Davin Healthcare Software Solutions
Knowledge | 9 min read

Cyber-Security and Learning Institutes: Best Practices

Date published: July 24, 2019

What are the Best Practices for keeping your college or university safe from a cyber-attack?

Recent Gallup polls showed that one in four Americans have experienced cybercrime1 and that 71% of Americans worry about hackers stealing their information2.  With the average cost of breaches well into the millions3, it is prudent for everyone to be vigilant with best practices in cyber-security.

Small, but essential changes can increase the security at your University or College.  The following are our tips from our experts about the best cyber-security practices that can help keep you, and your school’s data, safe.  Our Director of Software Development, Mike Zinni, shared his thoughts as well.


Ensuring that everyone at your learning institute stays up-to-date on current threats and cyber-criminal tactics can be a challenge.  Even evaluating everyone’s base-level of understanding can be a massive undertaking.

Using security awareness training, such as Wombat Security (https://www.wombatsecurity.com/), allows you to evaluate and train your employees to safeguard your company from breaches that start at the user level.

“The people in your buildings and on your network are your biggest risk.  Providing education for these people is the most cost-effective way of mitigating this risk.”



Software updates are more than functionality and aesthetic changes; those updates are invaluable for keeping your computer secure.  Hackers exploit bugs and security flaws to infiltrate your computer.  Never put off or ignore software updates because they can contain fixes that help to eliminate exploitive bugs and flaws.

“Have you done the basics to prevent a breach?  That is the question that you will be asked if a breach occurs.  Regular updates to all of your software applications is a best practice and a minimum requirement for protecting your network.”


Spam Blockers

Stopping phishing and malicious spam e-mails before they reach the user will go a long way to reducing the risk of a breach.  Check with your hosting partner to make sure that they have implemented the catching and quarantining of suspicious e-mails.

“Don’t let your employee make a bad decision, automate the process to identify and remove suspicious e-mails before they reach the end-user.”


Password Maintenance 

Honestly, it may seem like this is a no-brainer, but how many of your passwords do you use multiple times?  If someone found out that password, then multiple accounts would be compromised.  Practicing proper password maintenance is key to keeping your secure accounts locked.

Proper password maintenance is three-fold:

    • Never use the same password twice.
    • Create a password that is at least 10 characters long and always use a combination of numbers, letters, and special characters.
    • Use a password keeper program to manage your passwords and replace sticky notes to save your passwords.

“Many applications now allow very long passwords. A phrase can be a very effective method of creating a secure and memorable password.”


Also, make sure to use password hygiene with outgoing employees.  Read our blog about this subject here.

Secure Partners

A chain is only as strong as its weakest link, and that applies to cybersecurity.  You could take all the precautions in the world, but if your integrated partner doesn’t hold itself to the same level of security, your system is not secure.

Whenever you’re partnering, make sure to find out the partner’s security protocols.  We have a blog here that goes into this topic further.

“Don’t be afraid to ask for details.  If the partner cannot provide details on its security processes, it may not be the right partner for you.”



Following these essential tips will go a long way to preventing your University or College from becoming the next news story about the latest breach.  Be smart, be safe, and be secure.


1. Reinhart, R. (2018, December 10). One in Four Americans Have Experienced Cybercrime. Retrieved July 19, 2019, from https://news.gallup.com/poll/245336/one-four-americans-experienced-cybercrime.aspx

2. Brenan, M. (2018, November 13). Cybercrimes Remain Most Worrisome to Americans. Retrieved July 19, 2019, from https://news.gallup.com/poll/244676/cybercrimes-remain-worrisome-americans.aspx

3.>Eubanks, N. (2017, July 13). The True Cost Of Cybercrime For Businesses. Retrieved July 19, 2019, from https://www.forbes.com/sites/theyec/2017/07/13/the-true-cost-of-cybercrime-for-businesses/#76c59de04947

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