We live in the technological era, which changed almost every aspect of our lives. For some time now, technology is a big part of education. Now, after the pandemic and rise of online learning, we can definitely say that education as we knew it changed to its core. And while this has brought tremendous opportunities for learning and growth, as well as unlimited access to information, it also brought security concerns that we need to tackle.In terms of offering the Best Education New Brunswick New Jersey is fortunate to have exceptional universities and schools that place emphasis on excellence and imaginative teaching.
With the easy access to information, education has become more complex for the student. Today, educators have higher expectations when they assign a paper. After all, students can access millions of resources simply by typing on their keyboard, so the requirements for writing are much, much higher. Thankfully, technology can also be used to make this simpler and more effective for students. When a paper is too difficult or the student has little time on their hand, they can just say “write my essay” and get a paper written by a writing expert without anyone knowing.
While technology is very useful for finding data, not to mention the many tools that can help both teachers and students, it can also be dangerous. Much of education directed at students who use technology today is focused on security and privacy – and rightfully so.
It is very important to teach the generation that uses technology for learning – as well as teaching, to keep themselves safe on the Internet. Let’s take a look at some of the best cyber security tips all teachers and students should know.
1. Security is an Ongoing Conversation
Cybercrime changes and advances all the time. The threats that existed before are gone now, but criminals always find new ways to attack the users. That being said, the classroom should be a positive space where students share information regarding their online usage and threats they’ve come across. Educators should continuously talk about security and cyber risks, and teach the students how to avoid them.
2. Always Be Alert
When it comes to online learning or writing, common sense is our best friend. It’s smart to always think twice before opening attachments from people we don’t know or clicking links just because the content in the message looks interesting. In most cases, when the content is too good to be true, it’s because it is. Those messages requiring ‘immediate action’ or throwing prizes at the recipient are almost always scam.
3. Protect Your Passwords
Updating passwords for the accounts we use is paramount for our security. There’s no stronger measure to protect you against criminals obtaining your personal information than using different, strong passwords and changing them frequently. On top of that, it’s recommended to enable multi-factor authentication wherever possible. MFA requires 2 actions to unlock an account in addition to your password, such as a time-sensitive code on your mobile or in your email.
4. Keep Software Updated
Updates exist for two main reasons – to improve the user’s experience and their security. Those annoying update notifications students keep avoiding are the developer’s fixes of glitches, whether they are in usability, functionality, or security.
To improve your cyber security, you should set up automatic updates for your mobile, computer, and any other device you use. These can take time and space, but most of them contain security patches for known exploits that are putting you at risk.
5. Be Careful with Your Downloads
Today, there’s an app for almost everything. Students can download apps to help them edit their papers or take notes. Educators can use apps to create their lesson plans or engage the students. However, not all apps are equally secure. When it comes to privacy and security, some apps fall behind tremendously.
This is why it is important that you stick to software that is legit and approved. Download apps only from the official stores such as the App Store on iOS or the PlayStore on Android. Whenever you find an app that’s not in the store, find out why they didn’t offer it there – and think again before downloading it.
Some apps might not be in the store but still be of great use to you. This is why it’s smart to check who developed the app. If the developer is a trusted company, this is a good choice. If it’s not, you might want to do more research or look for an alternative.
6. Limit Your Activities when Using Public Wi-Fi
Public Wi-Fi makes us vulnerable to cybercrime. If possible, you should avoid using Wi-Fi altogether. However, since students and educators often use public networks when they work or study outside their home, it’s important to practice some caution. When logged into a public network, avoid entering sensitive information and don’t access private sources such as your online banking account. You might want to use a virtual private network, too.
7. Don’t Overshare on Social Channels
This is a common problem with students today. Social media is very popular, and most users share too much about their personal life on the channels. This puts them at various risks. For example, if you keep posting photos whenever you are at vacation, this makes you an easy target for burglars.
This is why it is important for students and educators to understand and talk about the risks that come with oversharing on social media.
8. Back Up Your Data Regularly
Data can be lost, stolen or misused. If you want to keep it safe and not lose it, set up automatic backups. Every now and then, make sure that the important documents you have are on a cloud or external hard drive. You wouldn’t want losing the big project you’ve been working on before you submit it, would you?
9.Protect Your Physical Devices, Too
It’s not just the online access or behaviors that put students and educators at risk – it is their behavior with the physical devices, too. When it comes to protecting yourself and your data, it’s important to take care of your devices too. Students should be encouraged to lock their laptops, tables, and smartphones and not leave them unattended.
Technology has transformed education on many levels. It made it richer for both educators and students, not to mention given them an unbelievable access to useful resources. However, we should all learn to handle this gift carefully. If we want to be protected, we must take measures like the ones above to maintain our safety online.