CyberArk has been selected by Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU) to protect the identity of 27,000 staff and students. GCU is to deploy CyberArk’s Identity Security Platform to “power its mission-critical identity and access management modernization initiatives.”

Tahir Yousaf, IT director at GCU (Image Credit: LinkedIn)
Tahir Yousaf, IT director at GCU

Tahir Yousaf, IT director at GCU, said, “In recent years GCU and others within the sector have increasingly been the target of cyberattacks. These risks drove us to completely reassess our approach to cybersecurity in general, and identity and access management in particular. We needed to closely examine every aspect of our security stack.

We selected the CyberArk platform for its well-established privileged access management and access management capabilities, knowing it could offer additional identity security capabilities as we mature and expand our security programs.”

Enabling greater security

Cyber-attacks on universities have soared in the last year. This deal between CyberArk and GCU is likely to provide the university with a number of benefits. In the press release, GCU highlighted ongoing audit and upcoming regulatory requirements as some of the areas to benefit. It also sees this as boosting productivity and securing privileged access for its team of IT administrators.

In addition, it has called out eight other areas where the Identity Security Platform will deliver. Those are:

  • Authenticate users with adaptive multi-factor authentication
  • Securely access and share student and staff application passwords
  • Secure web applications from threats originating on the endpoint and prevent data exfiltration
  • Provide greater insight into user risk and potential threats
  • Demonstrate compliance
  • Improve user lifecycle management
  • Continuously review and verify access
  • Prevent credential theft and limit privilege escalation and lateral movement

Enterprise Times: What does this mean?

Universities are common targets for cybercriminals. It is not just about the disruption that ransomware causes and the potential earnings for the attackers. Universities are hotbeds of research & development. Professors are expected to bring in research funds as part of their tenure. It means that attacks on research teams yields data that can be sold by an attacker to governments and unscrupulous companies.

By tightening up on identity management, GCU is looking to reduce its attack surface. It will also see this as giving it a more hardened IT environment. That will appeal to organisations looking to commission research as it means data will be better protected.

It also makes sense that, as a university offering computing and cybersecurity degrees, GCU delivers as secure an environment as possible. It reassures staff and students about the security of their PII and gives students on relevant courses a chance to experience real-world challenges and solutions.


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