Technology and mobile devices are everywhere on today’s college and university campuses. Students are using digital tools both in and out of the classroom, and have come to expect a fast wireless connection wherever they are. To keep up with their connected students and the digital demands of a 21st century education, higher education institutions are constantly expanding their technology offerings.

But in addition to increasing the benefits of digital connectivity across campus, these changes can also increase the opportunity for cybersecurity breaches. Because of this, I wanted to talk a little more about what schools can do to mitigate their cybersecurity risk.

One thing institutions can do is invest in new tools and solutions that increase the campus’ cybersecurity protection. However, something that most IT teams don’t think of is not adding more, but looking at what they already have. When universities add new features and new equipment, the old ones don’t just disappear. And with all of the other IT issues that pop up on large, interconnected campuses, as long as things are working properly, why bother?


The problem is that old, outdated network equipment might still work fine, but it’s actually increasing your school’s security risk. These legacy systems were not designed to withstand today’s cyber threats, and most fail to meet current cybersecurity requirements. And if you can’t trust your infrastructure, everything else that’s built off of it is at risk as well.

So instead of adding more and more cybersecurity solutions to your system, you might want to consider focusing on what you already have. By updating your network infrastructure, you can be assured that it is capable of protecting you against modern cybersecurity threats. When you ensure each piece of equipment is trustworthy and deliberately added, you’ll be able to create a trusted end-to-end infrastructure for your campus. This infrastructure will allow you to offer the latest and greatest technologies to your students and staff while still mitigating your cybersecurity risk – a win-win situation.

Learn more about Cisco’s security solutions for education here, or follow along on social media:


Stephen Orr

Distinguished Systems Engineer

US Public Sector