Resources shared by our guests this episode:

In this episode of The K-12 Tech Experience, Jake Kasowski is joined by Northshore School District’s Senior Systems Engineer, Jon Biggerstaff, and Lead Unix Server Support, Ski Kacoroski. This episode is a follow-up to an earlier episode with Northshore School District’s Network Operations Manager, Jon Wiederspan, discussing the district’s October 2019 ransomware incident. Jon Biggerstaff and Ski join to share their experience dealing with ransomware and what each had to do technically to help the district recover.

Share your thoughts with us on Twitter @managedmethods @jakasowski or on LinkedIn.

Learn more about ManagedMethods.

(04:21) – Jon and Ski share what it was like when the team first discovered the ransomware, what was happening, and what they wish they would’ve done in hindsight.

(08:30) – The first steps Northshore’s tech team did in response to the ransomware.

(10:52) – Rebuilding Active Directory and using LDAP mapping to help recover.

(15:17) – Prioritizing which systems get brought back online first.

(19:51) – How the rest of the district administrative staff outside of technology felt the impact of ransomware.

(22:08) – The unexpected challenges Jon and Ski had to overcome during recovery.

(26:29) – The changes Northshore’s team has made as a result of the district’s ransomware incident.

(32:27) – The indicators for school districts to watch for before (and during) an attack and what districts can do proactively to improve their security posture.

(39:16) – How Jon and Ski’s outlook on cybersecurity has changed in the past 2 years since the ransomware incident.

(40:32) – Resources Jon and Ski use to stay up-to-date on news and trends.

In this episode of The K-12 Tech Experience, Jake Kasowski is joined by ManagedMethods colleagues David Waugh, ManagedMethods chief revenue officer, and Senior Account Executive, Michael Summer. The three discuss the latest report from ManagedMethods, What You Don’t Know Can Hurt You, based on a survey of district-level administrators by EdWeek Research Center, and the findings that came from it. Michael and David share their reactions to the results of the survey (02:51); Michael talks to the state of cybersecurity and data privacy in K-12 schools (07:40); David discusses why district IT administrators have not been keen to cloud security (09:44); Michael shares why district IT administrators are confident in the security of their data, despite not having cloud security platforms implemented (16:31); David talks to the lack of concern by district IT admins of data breaches and leaks in K-12 (19:58); Michael and David discuss the growing attention cyber safety is receiving, but the lack of concern among administrators overall (23:54); David and Michael talk about the lack of resources and budget school districts allocate to cybersecurity (28:59); David and Michael share what district administrators need to know about their Google and Microsoft cloud environments to be protected moving forward (34:35); Michael shares his thoughts on how his thinking on cybersecurity, safety, and privacy has changed–being a former technology director (39:31).

View the announcement of ManagedMethods report: https://managedmethods.com/blog/new-managedmethods-report-reveals-30-percent-of-k-12-school-districts-lack-cloud-application-security/

Read the full ManagedMethods report: https://managedmethods.com/wp-content/uploads/ManagedMethods-K-12-Cloud-Security-Survey-Report-2021.pdf

View ManagedMethods infographic, What You Don’t Know Can Hurt You: https://managedmethods.com/wp-content/uploads/ManagedMethods-2021-K-12-Cloud-Security-Report-Infographic.pdf

Share your thoughts with us on Twitter @managedmethods @jakasowski and on LinkedIn.

Learn more about ManagedMethods at https://managedmethods.com/

In this episode of The K-12 Tech Experience, Jake Kasowski is joined again by David Mendez, the Information Security Lead and Technical Project Manager at Region 10 Education Service Center. Jake and David have a conversation about mental health in K-12 IT and David shares some of his own personal experiences when it comes to maintaining a good state of mental health. David speaks to the topic of mental health and why it needs to be discussed more often, especially in the IT sector (03:33); how the information age has created anxiety, mental health issues, depression, etc. in today’s society (08:05); how social media impacts mental health (14:12); how the past two years since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic exposed mental health issues (21:42); David shares a personal experience of his in regards to mental health and the expectations he put on himself that impacted him (28:35); David and Jake discuss imposter syndrome, social media, and disconnecting (36:50); David and Jake offer up some good habits to help improve mental health (52:54).

Resources cited and referenced during the conversation:

  • National Alliance on Mental Illness (https://nami.org/mhstats)
  • Overcoming Information Overload (https://psychcentral.com/blog/overcoming-information-overload#1)
  • Video: Habit Loops w/ Judson Brewer, MD, PhD (https://youtu.be/hhxj_4QV_us?t=648)
  • Calm (meditation app, free for schools): https://www.calm.com/schools?from=/schools

Share your thoughts with us on Twitter @managedmethods @jakasowski and on LinkedIn. Learn more about ManagedMethods at https://managedmethods.com/

*Disclaimer: This episode features anecdotal experiences and conversations on mental health. This is not professional medical advice.

In this episode of The K-12 Tech Experience, Jake Kasowski is joined by Domenica Lee Crognale, a Certified Instructor and Author at SANS Institute. Jake and Domenica discuss SANS Institute’s #SecuretheFamily campaign and how families can be better protected online. Domenica shares more about the classes offered at SANS Institute (03:20); the SANS Institute #SecuretheFamily campaign and its mission (04:09); the key issues that the #SecuretheFamily campaign aims to address and help educate families on (05:16); the importance of separating work and school from the personal items of parents and kids (05:59); what school districts and organizations need to be aware of as employees and students bring personal devices into their networks (09:08); the reasons hackers are after data and what to be mindful of as different types of devices are used in organizations and schools (12:04); the risks that families and school districts need to be mindful of (14:02); how to balance privacy and safety when protecting devices (16:58); what IT staff can do to help educate parents and students who log into school accounts on personal devices (20:45); how families can help better protect school-issued devices at home (24:47); the school online safety risks that parents should be mindful of and look out for (27:13); what can families do to make sure their home networks are secured (29:46); how the past 18 months has changed Domenica’s thinking on cybersecurity, safety, and data privacy (31:45).

Learn more about the #SecuretheFamily campaign: https://www.sans.org/mlp/secure-the-family/

Learn more about SANS Institute: https://www.sans.org/

Share your thoughts with us on Twitter @managedmethods @jakasowski and on LinkedIn. Learn more about ManagedMethods at https://managedmethods.com/

In this episode of The K-12 Tech Experience, Jake Kasowski is joined by Chris Johnson, the Director of Technology at Mount Pleasant Community School District in Iowa. Jake and Chris discuss how cybersecurity across K-12 has changed and how mature school district cybersecurity is when it comes to the ability to protect against emerging threats. Chris shares how his role has changed as a technology director in a school district (06:54); any lessons learned from the past year that Chris has continued to implement at Mount Pleasant CSD (10:11); what cybersecurity maturity means and how it applies to K-12 schools (12:20); how the increased cyberattacks toward K-12 has impacted cybersecurity maturity (18:00); why smaller school districts need to assume they are as big of a target as larger districts and organizations (20:19); the types of cyber threats school districts face, especially from the students and staff internally (23:38); the direction that government and K-12 education are moving when it comes to cybersecurity (25:49); the vulnerabilities school district technology directors need to be mindful of (28:12); how Chris’ outlook on cybersecurity, online safety, and privacy has changed during the past year (31:16); how technology departments can balance cybersecurity and accessibility to learning resources in school classrooms (36:53). Resources Chris uses to stay up-to-date on the latest news and trends: SANS Institute (https://www.sans.org/), MS-ISAC (https://www.cisecurity.org/ms-isac/), CISA (https://www.cisa.gov/), Flipboard (https://flipboard.com/), his local education area resource.

Listen to Chris Johnson’s podcast MSP 1337 (https://anchor.fm/msp1337) and his episode on K-12 vulnerabilities (https://anchor.fm/msp1337/episodes/Cybersecurity-in-K12-eosocg).

Share your thoughts with us on Twitter @managedmethods @jakasowski and on LinkedIn. Learn more about ManagedMethods at https://managedmethods.com/

In this episode of The K-12 Tech Experience, Jake Kasowski is joined by David Mendez, an Information Security Lead at Region 10 Education Service Center in Texas. Jake and David discuss how K-12 school districts can better embed cybersecurity into their culture to improve their cybersecurity posture. David discusses how his role has changed as an Information Security Lead and a Technical Project Manager at Region 10 (05:38); the importance of culture when it comes to cybersecurity in schools and why cybersecurity isn’t talked about as much in K-12 (09:00); how the reoccurring cybersecurity incidents over the past two years has impacted cybersecurity culture in school districts (12:37); David’s advice on how a district technology director can embed cybersecurity into their culture (18:59); what school districts as a whole can be doing to improve cybersecurity practices in their schools (23:53); David’s thoughts on staffing for cybersecurity to make sure it’s as effective as can be (31:14); how the 2020 school year changed David’s thinking on cybersecurity, student safety, and data privacy (36:53). Resources David uses to stay up to date on the latest news and trends: The Slack channel ‘Building Security People’, Reddit’s k12sysadmin subreddit, Twitter, Black Hills Information Security, and hands-on training from industry organizations offering it. Share your thoughts with us on Twitter @managedmethods @jakasowski and on LinkedIn. Learn more about ManagedMethods at https://managedmethods.com/

In this episode of The K-12 Tech Experience, Jake Kasowski is joined by Dr. Travis Paakki, the former Senior Director of Technology at Portland Public Schools. Jake and Travis discuss risk management and what is missing in K-12 cybersecurity. Travis discusses how his role as Senior Director of Technology changed over the course of the 2020-21 school year (06:20); the findings of his doctoral research into K-12 risk management (09:03); the research findings that surprised Travis in regards to risk management in K-12 (11:57); what risk management practices Travis recommends to get started on today (21:10); how school district IT teams can get more buy-in from the rest of their district administration (23:39); the updates Travis and his team made for the 2021-22 school year (26:04); how the amount of technologies students have access to has impacted risk management practices for his team (28:20); how the past year has changed Travis’ thinking on cybersecurity, online safety and data privacy in K-12 schools (33:34). Resources Travis uses to stay up to date on the latest news and trends: The Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center (MS-ISAC), the K-12 Security Information Exchange (K12 SIX), SANS Internet Storm Center podcasts, InfraGuard, and CISA. Share your thoughts on Twitter @managedmethods @jakasowski and on LinkedIn. Learn more about ManagedMethods at https://managedmethods.com/

In this episode of The K-12 Tech Experience, Jake Kasowski is joined by Kevin Nolten, the Director of Academic Outreach at CYBER.ORG, for another episode. Jake and Kevin discuss CYBER.ORG’s newly launched K-12 Cybersecurity Learning Standards and how teachers, school districts, state departments of education, and more can better incorporate cybersecurity education into their curriculum. Kevin talks about the importance of having cybersecurity learning standards in place for K-12 education (02:58); the organizations CYBER.ORG partnered with to develop these standards (06:54); when educators and organizations can start to implement these learning standards and what that process looks like (10:17); the core concepts of CYBER.ORG’s K-12 Cybersecurity Learning Standards (14:55); how these concepts can be implemented into the classroom and school courses (19:40); how the changing cybersecurity trends shape the development of the learning standards moving forward (22:50); how these standards can be used by teachers, school districts, state departments of education, and more (24:16); what’s next from CYBER.ORG to be on the lookout for (27:49). Learn more about CYBER.ORG at https://cyber.org/. Share us your thoughts on Twitter @managedmethods @jakasowski and on LinkedIn. Learn more about ManagedMethods at https://managedmethods.com/

In this episode of The K-12 Tech Experience, Jake Kasowski interviews Jon Wiederspan, a Network Operations Manager at Northshore School District in Washington state. Jon gives an inside look at the ransomware attack against Northshore School District back in October 2019, and shares more about the recovery process and what the early warning signs are that district IT teams need to be aware of. Jon discusses how his role has changed since March 2020 and the start of the 2020 school year (04:16); the lessons Jon and his team learned during the 2020 school year (05:53); the ransomware incident that Northshore School District experienced in October 2019 (08:15); the unexpected issues experienced during the incident (12:27); how Jon and his team went about informing district leadership at the start (15:13); the list of priorities that needed to come up first during the recovery process (16:49); the experience working with cyber insurance and government agencies (18:55); key changes Northshore School District has made to help protect against potential future incidents (25:05); what IT teams can be doing to catch ransomware and the warning signs as early as possible (30:11); how the ransomware incident and the past year in K-12 education changed Jon’s thinking on cybersecurity (34:08). Resources Jon uses to stay up to date on the latest news and trends: The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT), FBI Newsletters, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), and the K12 Security Information Exchange (K12 SIX). Share us your thoughts on Twitter @managedmethods @jakasowski and on LinkedIn. Learn more about ManagedMethods at https://managedmethods.com/

In this episode of The K-12 Tech Experience, Jake Kasowski interviews Adam Feind, a Customer Solutions Architect at Red River—a ManagedMethods partner. Jake and Adam discuss the challenges K-12 school districts face when dealing with ransomware and explore the cybersecurity needs of schools heading into the 2021-22 school year. Adam shares more about the challenges and successes for Red River this past year (04:47); how Adam’s role changed (07:53); the biggest needs of school districts looking ahead to the 2021 school year (09:10); the biggest challenges Adam anticipates for school districts in hybrid environments (11:45); the struggles school districts face when addressing ransomware (14:53); what school districts can be doing to be better protected against ransomware (19:19); how Adam’s thoughts on cybersecurity, student safety, and data privacy have changed in the past 18 months (21:53); what Adam is hearing around the growing cloud layer in school districts (24:36). Learn more about Red River at https://redriver.com/ and its Access EDU solution https://redriver.com/access-edu and its Security solution at https://redriver.com/security. Share your thoughts on Twitter @managedmethods @jakasowski and on LinkedIn. Learn more about ManagedMethods at https://managedmethods.com/