Universities are a popular target for cyberattacks. In fact, 79% of universities have had their reputation damaged by a cyberattack. The main reason for this is the kind of information these institutions store; as well as the personal data of students and staff, which can be sold if stolen, universities also store large amounts of research.
This research can be scientific, technological, or even medical. In fact, in recent months, British universities have suffered multiple attempts to hack their systems to try to steal their research into a COVID-19 vaccine. In this case, it is believed that nation states are behind the attacks. Universities store patents and designs for technologies; if a cybercriminal managed to steal this data, they could sell it to a private company to give them a competitive advantage.
This is why protecting university IT systems is so important. However, these institutions are often under-prepared to deal with cybersecurity challenges. Some of the reasons for this include a lack of resources, outdated infrastructure, and a host of devices, which are often poorly protected, connected to the university network.
Case study: Budapest University of Veterinary Medicine
The University of Veterinary Medicine in Budapest is the only higher education institution in Hungary training veterinarians. The institution was one of the first veterinarian schools in the world; veterinarians have since been trained at the university for more than two centuries without interruption.
The university has been working as an independent institution with an independent budget since its separation last year, which led it to rethink and transform it IT infrastructure. The previous structure was isolated, and had components at various levels of development. The infrastructure was transformed following a carefully thought-out, contiguous plan.
A key part of the transformation process was to review the protection the university was using until then. They were looking for an easy-to-use service that could offer a higher level of protection, rather than a cumbersome, robust solution that required a lot of resources.
One of the university’s providers draw their attention to Panda Security’s solutions. They decided to organize a meeting in order to see the main features, options, and modules.
During this meeting, the university talked about the need for not just a security solution, but a complete package to simplify the management of all their computers. The university needed this ability because the university is in numerous buildings and on several levels on the main campus. This situation makes it difficult to manage IT resources.
After the presentation, the university’s IT team began testing to see how the solution worked. Throughout the evaluation phase, the IT team received support from the Panda team.
The solution used by the university, Panda Fusion with Adaptive Defense 360, is a complete package. Because of this, the team received several training sessions throughout the test period to familiarize themselves with the different modules included.
One of the things that the IT team liked from the very beginning is that cloud-based infrastructure. It made deploying and updating the solution much easier. What’s more, it greatly facilitated the management of different locations.
The remote management software allows the university to automate some IT tasks, preventing problems before the can arise, and meaning that the IT department does not have to do “emergency” work.