Risk Management, Cybersecurity In Education, Security System, Higher Education
During the unprecedented times of COVID-19 pandemic, globally all education providers have been subjected to a major shift to e-learning mode of study. This paper aims at structuring multiple facets of e-learning risks in a way that will be feasible for educators and education administrators to assess and plan countermeasures. We have superimposed the stakeholders of Wagner, different classifications of risk from the review of literature and the specific conditions posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. The outcome is a framework where the risks of e-learning are exemplified under two dimensions - general risks and specific stakeholders’ risks. General risks are applicable to all stakeholders and are broadly classified under Non-availability, Illegitimate use /Theft, Integrity violation, Privacy violation, Deliberate attacks and Unintended/Natural threats. At the specific stakeholders’ level, the way in which the general risks affect each stakeholder group are categorized as content developers’ Risk, Instructors’ Risk, Institutions’ Risk, Administrative officers’ Risk, System Developers’ Risk, Students’ Risk, Employers’ Risk and Accreditation bodies’ Risk. We proposed a framework of risk analysis in two different dimensions - the general risks faced by any e-learning program and the risks faced at each stakeholder level. New areas of risks specific for the COVID-19 situation were identified as the lack of readiness, unexpected overload on all stakeholders and increased risks of security breaches which could lead to damaged reputation and reduced enrollment. In addition, the sudden online shift of examinations, lack of practical skills, poor attendance due to excessive internet traffic, lack of student engagement, uncertainty of regulations and increasing cybercrimes can have a negative impact on credibility and validity of the learning. The mitigation measures are similar to non-Covid times except that there is more emphasis on training, motivation and additional awareness campaigns.