Through an agreement with GTA, the Georgia Department of Education is bolstering cybersecurity resources for Georgia schools, providing tools to pinpoint vulnerabilities and generate a cybersecurity scorecard each district can use to focus improvement efforts.

The news release below was originally published on the GaDOE website on January 6.

GaDOE Providing Cybersecurity Infrastructure for All School districts

The Georgia Department of Education is working to expand cybersecurity resources to every school district in the state.

At its December meeting, the State Board of Education approved State School Superintendent Richard Woods' recommendation to provide licensing for a nationally recognized cybersecurity platform to each school district through a contract with the Georgia Technology Authority (GTA). GaDOE is dedicating $970,000 in federal funds to the licenses; school districts will not be responsible for any of the cost.

"With the escalation in cybersecurity breaches around the world, many of them in the education setting, it is essential that our school districts have the tools to keep student information safe," Superintendent Woods said. "This platform will help safeguard student data throughout the state without adding a cost burden at the school level."

The cybersecurity platform will give school districts the ability to view their technology infrastructure assets from an external perspective. In addition to exposing any vulnerabilities and providing recommendations for remediation, the platform will also generate an industry-standard cybersecurity scorecard of each school district's technology ecosystem. Districts can use this scorecard to focus efforts for improvement.

"Technology plays an essential role in our schools," GaDOE Chief Information Officer Dr. Keith Osburn said. "Ensuring our educational technology leaders have the tools necessary to identify and then defend against would-be threats to each district's infrastructure that houses student data is mission-critical. I applaud Superintendent Woods' and the state board's support for technology in education and their efforts to ensure the safety of student data."