Raleigh, N.C. — While many college students are adjusting back to virtual classes, some students in Wake County hit a road bump after a group of students gained access to about 20 virtual classes at Millbrook High School.
After multiple incidents of intruders accessing classrooms, cyber experts have some tips for concerned parents on how to help protect their children.
A local cyber expert, Steve Spragens of StoredTech, said hacking is a big problem right now – and anytime there’s a major disruption like the pandemic, hackers take advantage.
One parent said it’s concerning to hear, especially since his children spend hours, sometimes all day in front of the computer.
Students will be spending the coming weeks in front of their computers, but this virtual classroom can have its risks.
“So you have this weakness, of all these untrained individuals accessing these online resources and there hasn’t been time to adequately train them,” said Spragens.
Spragens says most safety measures fall on the users and their personal efforts to guard against hackers, which is why training is needed.
“There needs to be training and there need to be people that are taking it seriously and they need to implement it. And, children are children they like to show off with friends and they’re reaching out for social interaction that just isn’t available in a lot of capacities right now,” said Spragens.
Students sharing passwords is a big risk and an easy target for hackers, according to Spragens.
Trevis Bailey, who has 5 children learning at home, said it’s something that’s always in the back of his mind.
“I’ve seen a couple of videos on social media about children neglecting their passwords and I’ve seen some pretty derogatory things happening in the incident but thankfully it hasn’t happen at any of my children’s school thus far,” said Bailey.
However, he’s making sure he keeps a close eye on his children and what they have access to.
“We’re going to be monitoring their stuff and asking questions and we’ve also asked them to talk to us when they see stuff. If they see anything they’re not supposed to cause we’re still having to balance our working life as well but we’re committed to them not seeing anything they shouldn’t have to see,” he said.
Spragens said it’s not necessarily the remote learning that causes the problem – it’s the outside activity that leads to vulnerability.
Like sharing passwords.
He said it’s important to sit your child down and talk to them about being careful with the information they’re sharing online.
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