When you think about distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks, you probably envision them being carried out by experienced hackers. And while it’s true that your “typical” hackers are responsible for the majority of these attacks, we are beginning to see an unsettling trend. More and more, children are launching DDoS attacks against their own schools.
DDoS Attacks: Not Just for Advanced Hackers
In the United Kingdom, the National Crime Agency (NCA) has seen an increase in DDoS attacks carried out against schools since the pandemic hit at the beginning of 2020. Upon further investigation, researchers determined that these attacks were not being launched by criminal masterminds. They were being spearheaded by school children themselves – some of them as young as nine years old.
These attacks, which have increased in both size and scope, have been responsible for crashing school servers and causing disruption to eLearning services during the pandemic.
Addressing the Problem in Schools
Across the globe, efforts are underway to deter students from attempting DDoS attacks on their schools. Specifically, the NCA has recently launched a program in the UK that educates children on the consequences of carrying out attacks online. When a student uses a school computer to search for terms related to hacking or launching a DDoS attack, the child is automatically taken to the Cyber Choices website, which provides information about the legal and criminal ramifications of being involved in DDoS attacks.
So far, the NCA believes that these initiatives have been effective in reducing the volume of DDoS attacks in schools. As such, this trial program is expected to roll out at more than 2,000 primary and secondary schools across the United Kingdom.
What Schools Can Do to Increase Security
Despite efforts to deter DDoS attacks among students, the reality is that DDoS vulnerabilities are not going away anytime soon. As a result, schools need to be on guard more than ever when it comes to protecting their servers and information.
So, what are some steps schools can take to improve security and protect against DDoS attacks? One of the best tips for DDoS protection for education is…well, education. Students should be reminded of the ramifications of these attacks, while staff and faculty should be properly trained on basic cybersecurity practices.
When using a dedicated server for schools it’s important to have an IT expert who knows the importance of cybersecurity. While ReliableSite servers come standard with DDoS protection, it is up to each school to set up the parameters of the protection and keep the server updated frequently. With proper DDoS school network protection, schools can drastically reduce the likelihood of activities being interrupted from an attack.
Upgrade to a Dedicated Hosting Plan Today
If your school doesn’t already have a dedicated hosting plan with DDoS protection in place, now is the time to make the switch. ReliableSite offers a wide range of DDoS school servers to suit your exact needs and budget, so you can enjoy added protection and peace of mind during these uncertain times. Reach out today to learn more or to get started!