Some U.S. senators have recently made an urgent appeal to the U.S. Department of Education and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to aggressively step up cybersecurity protections at K-12 schools across the country.
The call came after a recent Government Accountability Office (GAO) report showed that plans put in place to address k-12 schools threats are outdated and focused primarily on stopping physical threats. The four senators who introduced the demands include Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), Jacky Rosen (D-NV), and Chris Van Hollen (D-MD).
Although the GAO report highlighted the vulnerability of K-12 schools, it highlights some steps that need to be taken to include a meeting between the Department of Education and CISA to determine how to update existing plans.
The senators also endorsed this position when they stated that “an updated subsector-specific plan will help the Department of Education and DHS effectively prioritize the risks, cyber and otherwise, to the Education Facilities subsector, while subsector-specific guidance would help K-12 schools better use existing cybersecurity frameworks and implement best practices.”