Partnership helps protect Irish education institutions against cyber threat

The collaboration, between Dublin’s HEANet and UK-based Jisc, is designed to offer protection against distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks

Last month marked the start of a new cybersecurity collaboration between the national research and education networks (NRENs) in Ireland and the UK.

Two not-for-profit organisations – Dublin-based HEANet, and Jisc in the UK –agreed a 12-month rolling contract, with Jisc providing protection for Irish universities, colleges and schools from distributed denial of service (DDoS) cyber attacks.

Jisc’s DDoS mitigation service already protects all UK further and higher education organisations from an increasing threat. Designed to disrupt or bring down network connections by flooding systems with data, DDoS attacks can be catastrophic for any organisation that relies on the internet.

The new contract has its roots in a longstanding collaborative relationship which has existed between the two organisations for more than a decade.

DDoS attacks represent a serious and evolving threat to our Irish education and research community

Jisc’s CEO, Paul Feldman, said: “Our research shows that DDoS attacks are increasing against the UK education sector, and are rightly considered by our university and college members to be one of the top five security threats; that’s why we take DDoS protection so seriously. We are delighted to be able to use our knowledge and expertise to help protect Irish organisations, too, and look forward to a continuing partnership.”

HEANet’s CEO, Kerrie Power, said: “DDoS attacks represent a serious and evolving threat to our Irish education and research community. HEAnet is committed to ensuring we have the right tools in place to minimise that threat, and the addition of Jisc’s DDoS service will significantly enhance our security services portfolio. Such deals are made possible through the spirit of collaboration which exists between international NRENs.”

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