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Need a way to secure Google Workspace Logins by students from abroad? — Tune in then.

And we’re back at it again folks! It’s lockdown 2.0 for most of the world and schools have once again closed their doors and completely shifted to online classes and remote teaching.

But if there’s one thing we learned from the grand eLearning shift of 2020 it’s that we need to put our school’s digital classroom management and cybersecurity operations first. And, thankfully, this time we’re more prepared. 

This eLearning shift, however, started right after or amid the Holidays season. With many schools allowing students to eLearn from abroad, and staff working from overseas as well.

To that, while doing research on logins to Google Workspace, we recently noticed a large number of logins to domains from outside their home country . In particular to US school domains. 

And even with schools allowing students and staff to remotely learn and work from abroad, we still suspect a large number of these logins are not legitimate. And here’s why ?

Why Do Schools Need to Monitor & Secure Google Workspace Logins from Abroad?

1.School students are highly susceptible to these types of account theft because: 

  • They tend not to have 2FA enabled.
  • They use their accounts or passwords on dubious sites — They might not even realise that they’re co-sharing their accounts with overseas individuals.

2. Logins from ‘unexpected’ areas abroad is one of the TOP tell-tale signs of a compromised Google Workspace Account. 

Even with schools allowing students and staff to login from abroad, admins need to know which countries they’re logging in from. But we’ll discuss this in more detail below.

3. Cyber thieves are well aware of this remote shift and tend to fully exploit any security gaps therein. That’s why they wouldn’t sweat much now about being detected via geolocation tracking — which is exactly why you need to monitor it closely.

Did you know ?: Schools are the no.2 target for ransomware attacks. Ransomware in 2020 has increased by a factor of seven compared to 2019. 


How Schools can monitor and secure Google Workspace Logins from abroad?

1. MONITOR Logins. First you need to prepare a list of areas/ countries where you’d expect your users to login from. Once this list is ready,  ‘whitelist’ those areas and investigate domain logins from outside that scope you specified.

You can also set up alerts for logins from outside this scope to stay in the know of things. This will help you spot compromised accounts better and act fast before malicious actors get a chance to cause any real damage.

Blog - How and Why Schools need to Secure Google Workspace Logins from abroad


2. REMIND students NOT to reuse their accounts and passwords on multiple sites, especially dubious ones, as this helps attackers steal their login details via credential stuffing.

3. ENFORCE 2FA for all users on your domain. Here’s how.

4. CHECK suspicious logins with relevant account owners. Have they lost their device? Checked in from another country recently? 

That way you get the full picture and can quickly act upon viable suspicions.

Finally, we recommend that school admins stay vigilant to our TOP tell-tale signs of a compromised Google Workspace account to better help and secure users learning and teaching remotely during this shift.


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