Cybersecurity professionals performs a risk assessment at a computer
Cybersecurity in higher education requires a cultural change. It’s important to get everyone to understand that there needs to be changes in the way that we do business, so it really starts at the top by educating leadership and then building a strategy to communicate it out to all the stakeholders.
Allen Baxter, Information Security Officer, The University of Southern Mississippi

Welcome to Higher Ed Advisor, the Baker Tilly podcast series where we speak with higher education industry leaders about practical and proactive guidance to help colleges and universities protect and enhance their value.

Cybercrime continues to elevate information technology (IT) risks across higher education and the research institution community is a prime target for increasingly more advanced and dangerous attacks. In this podcast, the University of Southern Mississippi’s (USM) Information Security Officer, Allen Baxter, and Baker Tilly’s Higher Education Cybersecurity Leader, Mike Cullen, navigate the critical role cybersecurity plays to protect institutional data and research.

Listen as we zone in on why research institution leaders should raise their awareness, education, collaboration, communication and plans to effectively and strategically manage and mitigate cybersecurity risks, in addition to complying with federal research requirements. We define the most common regulations (NIST 800-171, CMMC, NSPM-33 and GLBA) and further examine:

  • Why and how research institutions are increasingly vulnerable to cyberattacks and threats
  • Importance of understanding data to apply the controls and safeguards needed to secure research
  • Key implications of not protecting data from a regulatory and threat perspective
  • Questions that help identify, assess and manage cyber risks
  • Strategies to comply with federal regulations that can impact funding
  • How proper cybersecurity measures align with an institution’s mission

Cybersecurity is a journey. Allen and Mike reveal leading cybersecurity practices that decision-makers should consider as part of their long-term strategy to protect and enhance their campus’ data, resources and reputation.

The culture of higher education is both a challenge and an asset. The challenge is dealing with a lot of threats, regulations and different activities happening. The asset is that institutions can address all these things in smaller chunks or enclaves to meet the necessary regulations or requirements yet not be overly burdensome at the same time.
Mike Cullen, Principal and Higher Education Cybersecurity Leader, Baker Tilly

Meet this episode’s guest speaker

  • Allen Baxter, Information Security Officer, The University of Southern Mississippi
  1. Listen on Apple Podcasts
  2. Listen on Google Podcasts
  3. Listen on iHeartRadio
  4. Listen on Spotify
  5. Listen on Stitcher
School classroom of desks before students arrive
Next up

CommuniTIES: How inflation trends are affecting your organization and how to plan for these changes