Academic journal article Library Philosophy and Practice

A Review of Trends and Issues of Cybersecurity in Academic Libraries

Academic journal article Library Philosophy and Practice

A Review of Trends and Issues of Cybersecurity in Academic Libraries

Article excerpt


Cyber security is the body of technologies, processes and practices designed to protect networks, computers, programs and data from attack, damage or unauthorized access. In a computing context, the term security implies cyber security. Organization and user's assets include connected computing devices, personnel, infrastructure, applications, services, telecommunications systems, and the totality of transmitted and/or stored information in the cyber environment. Cyber security strives to ensure the attainment and maintenance of the security properties of the organization and user's assets against relevant security risks in the cyber environment. Security remains near the top of the list of strategic issues facing higher education institutions. Given the increasing volume of information that needs to be protected, the expanding body of rules, regulations, and laws governing information security and privacy, and the current economic downturn, which makes it even harder for an institution to obtain the funding necessary to keep up with requirements, this is not at all surprising. Security is not strictly a technology matter; indeed, it is a foundational element for almost all academic libraries. Responsibility for security needs to extend beyond information technology to every functional office in the institution and to the highest level of management. IT professionals can assist in this endeavor by not limiting their own perspective to IT and by modeling behavior to treat security and privacy best practices as everybody's responsibility.

Purpose of paper

The importance of information resources cannot be overemphasized as users depend on library resources for knowledge and new ideas to enhance intellectual development. As a result, libraries faced varying degrees of delinquency in the use of their resources. The extent of this problem varies from one library to another. Previously theft and defacement were the order of the day but now that we are in the technology age, cyber threats have plagued academic libraries thereby making it necessary for the emergence of cyber security.

Structure of paper

There would be a brief background to security in general, perspective of cybersecurity, forms of cyber security, cyber security actions, consequences of inactions , cyber ethics, conclusion and recommendation.

Background to the study

Different libraries have adopted varying security measures for their collections' safety. McComb (2004) writes that physical (non-electronic) security, electronic security and security policies/procedures are substantial methods for securing information resources of all kinds of libraries. Physical security includes architectural considerations, the use of personnel, and security hardware to prevent crimes against library collections. Electronic security system refers to the use of equipment which typically provide alarm notification to the appropriate authority on entry control and site surveillance. Major elements of the electronic security system include burglary protection, collection security (hidden on materials), access control (systems that directly "read" unique personal characteristics such as voice quality, hand geometry, identity cards, etc.), and video surveillance, particularly the CCTV system. Sensors (detectors) to detect an intrusion and alarms (to notify appropriate authorities) are the facilities that make this type of security electronic ( On the other hand, security policies and procedures include all created and implemented security policies, procedures, and plans for the library. These should, at least, include entry and exit procedures, room registration procedures, personal belonging restrictions, special collections use policies, and entry key management procedures (McComb, 2004).

Cybersecurity is concerned with making cyberspace safe from threats, namely cyber-threats. The notion of "cyber-threat" is rather vague and implies the malicious use of information and communication technology (ICT) either as a target or as a tool by a wide range of malevolent actors. …

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