Reporter’s notebook

Photo: Matthew Dembicki

  • Strengthening cybersecurity efforts
  • New reports from Michigan

Strengthening cybersecurity efforts

A new report from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and analytics software company FICO focuses on the cybersecurity challenges of working from home during the pandemic and offers ways employers can improve their protection.

The report says there are six important recommendations that every business (and community college, we think) can use:

  • Consider the benefits of using cloud services.
  • Instruct employees on the proper components of a home office network.
  • Use a properly configured virtual private network (VPN).
  • Take steps to introduce elements of security to teleconferencing.
  • Have a plan to identify and manage third-party and supply-chain risk.
  • Think through — and adhere to — sound Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policies and procedures.

The pandemic has given cyber criminals more opportunities to take advantage of vulnerabilities. For example, Google reports there are more than 240 million emails per day related to COVID-19 scams. So-called phishing using e-mails that seem genuine but are actually a Trojan horse is a common and successful ploy for cyber attacks. But with a little staff training, most are attacks can be deflected.

“The same practices that would have prevented a successful cyber intrusion last year are the same practices that can protect us today,” the report said.

New reports from Michigan

Two new publications from the Michigan Center for Student Success (MCSS) tracks the progress that the state’s community colleges have made in implementing guided pathways as well supporting student learning during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Organizing, Supporting, and Continuing Guided Pathways in Michigan” describes findings from a qualitative study of 13 participating colleges to determine how the colleges have organized the work of implementing guided pathways and how they plan to sustain and build on their progress.

Following Where #MIFacultyLead” describes the evolution of MCSS’s intentional efforts to engage faculty in student success-focused reform efforts over the past decade.

About the Author

Matthew Dembicki
is editor of Community College Daily and serves as publications director for the American Association of Community Colleges.