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Why Schools Shouldn’t Share Security Information Online

Written on 29 May, 2024

Why Schools Shouldn't Share Security Information Online 1In an age where transparency is highly valued, it is understandable that schools want to keep parents, students, and staff well-informed about what’s going on. However, when it comes to security, it’s best to keep things under wraps.

Here are just a few reasons why schools shouldn’t post their Critical Incident Plans or IT Disaster Recovery Plans on their websites:

1. You don’t have to!

There is government guidance available to all schools that informs them exactly what must or should be published on a school websites. It is regularly updated, and you can find it using the links below:

What maintained schools must or should publish online

What academies and further education colleges must or should publish online

2. Keep Your Plans Secret – Increase Your Cyber Resilience

Imagine if someone who wanted to cause trouble knew exactly how the school handles emergencies or IT Disasters. When security plans are posted online, it’s like giving potential attackers a blueprint of the school’s defences. Perpetrators could find weak spots and take advantage of them or target individuals to gain access to school systems. By not sharing this information online, schools reduce that risk and immediately increase cyber resilience.

3. Protecting Personal Information

School security plans often include information about the people who keep the school safe. This might encompass names, roles, access levels, and even personal contact details. If these details are shared online, not only could this be a potential breach of UK GDPR, but those individuals could be at risk of being targeted, perhaps by phishing.

4. Insurance Policies

If you left a note on your car that let someone know where the keys were, would you expect your insurance company to pay out if it was stolen?  Publishing detailed school security and recovery plans on your school website may void insurance policies so please check the small print. To be on the safe side – don’t publish them!

Transparency is crucial in many aspects of school administration, but security information should be handled with the utmost discretion so that schools can better protect their students, staff, and wider school community from potential threats.


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