IBM is helping these schools build up their ransomware defenses

IBM has expanded a program to improve the cybersecurity defenses of public schools with $5 million in grants. 

On Tuesday, IBM said $5 million of in-kind grants would be awarded to public schools, including K-12 institutions in the United States. While IBM’s existing grants program has previously focused on US schools, the scheme has now expanded to other countries. 

IBM said these programs are necessary to “help address cybersecurity resiliency in schools, including against ransomware.”

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In total, six grants are being awarded to US school districts. In addition, four grants are destined for Brazil, Costa Rica, Ireland, and the United Arab Emirates. Each award is worth $500,000, bringing the total to $5 million in resources and hours. 

The program is part of IBM’s Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives under IBM Impact, including social, environmental, and governance projects. 

IBM teams will work with schools to audit existing defenses and create playbooks for incident response. In addition, they will address cybersecurity awareness and training for staff, students, and parents, and develop a management-level strategic plan for handling communication in the aftermath

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