Teachers cast doubt on cyber security resilience of schools amid shift online

Less than half of teachers believe their school has done enough to prevent cyber security problems, according to a survey.

Around 51% said they were unsure or disagreed that their school was well equipped to tackle such issues, at a time when pupils have been forced to shift learning online from home during the coronavirus pandemic.

Internet Matters research of more than 1,000 teachers revealed that over a third (36%) have received no information from schools on cybersecurity in the past year, while only one in five (20%) say they were given training after lockdown began.

Some 45% of teachers said they feel pupils have a better knowledge of cybersecurity than they do.

“The research highlights how online safety needs to remain a top priority for parents as tech is playing an even bigger role in children’s lives,” said Carolyn Bunting, chief executive of Internet Matters.

“Following lockdown, children are relying on their devices to socialise, for their downtime and increasingly, for their education.

“We’re urging parents to familiarise themselves with cybersecurity risks head-on this summer as children’s use of connected devices is on the rise and devices remain vital to their education when they return to lessons.

“Having regular, honest and open conversations with your child about both their personal safety and cybersecurity issues is vital in helping them navigate their online world safely and responsibly.”

The findings come as part of a joint initiative between the online child safety organisation and cybersecurity firm ESET.

“Now, more than ever, tackling cybersecurity needs to be a top priority for schools as they may be increasingly forced to turn to the online world to support their pupils and their educational needs,” ESET’s Julian Roberts added.

“Cybercriminals are constantly evolving their methods and organisations that oversee young people using technology must be fully equipped to not just tackle potential issues but educate as well.”