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Cherokee County School District Data Protection Plan

By Bobby Blount 

Technology has become an important part of the classroom, and as it has gained traction in the school system, it has become necessary to implement a data protection plan to protect the students of Cherokee County. The Cherokee County School District has implemented several strategies for protecting student information and investments as it relates to technology use. With an environment of continuous threats throughout the world, we find that we must remain vigilant to maintain and sustain a secured networked environment for our teaching and learning community.

While much of the responsibility for data security and protection falls upon the Division of Technology & Information Services, all users in the CCSD education community have a significant part to play in helping to keep information and devices protected. Here are some ways CCSD protects the students!

Microsoft and Windows  

The Microsoft Windows 10 Operating System coupled with the Windows Server 2016 environment, provide a robust secured environment for the district. Office 365 is a cloud-based productivity and communication resource and is widely used. Integrated into the Microsoft ecosystem are the following:
  • Ransomware protection for OneDrive
  • Advanced Threat Protection for email, which proactively prevents e-mail phishing. 

Daily Workstations, Laptops, and Desktop Computer 

  • Windows Defender – Provides antispam, antivirus and anti-malware on client computers
  • BitLocker – Encrypts data on local hard drives. This is helpful in cases of theft of devices that may contain personal or sensitive data and requires a secured key code to access the content of the drive. 

Network  

  • Firewall – Intrusion Protection System – CCSD has recently replaced the legacy firewall with new technology. Firewalls proactively keep unauthorized users (hackers), out of the CCSD network.
  • Load Balancers – The IP Intelligence Threat Analyzer prevents botnets, denial-of-service attacks, infected sources, phishing, proxies, scanners, spam sources, web attacks, windows exploits.
  • Content Filter – This prevents access to malicious sites by users of our network and protect students (and staff) from being exposed to inappropriate sites, images, or verbiage.
  • Backups for enterprise data – Backups of critical systems are performed daily. Cloud-based resources (e.g., OneDrive) are backed-up by the provider with appropriate Service-Level-Agreements (SLA) in place to offer guarantees on this service.

CCSD makes a point every year to remind employees and students be aware of security, malicious emails, phishing campaigns, and other such risks. Through constant reminders and quick notifications when a threat is imminent or actively in play, user awareness and training on appropriate action/reaction is crucial to successfully thwarting off the attacks. 

The Cherokee County Educational Foundation is dedicated to supporting the students and staff of the Cherokee County School District in whatever way is needed – including cyber security!
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