Sterling Heights

Macomb cyber security event to boost business awareness

For online legal expert Jim Giszczak, being cyber savvy isn’t a choice for businesses anymore. 
“Organizations of every size, and in every industry, are under attack daily from phishing attacks, ransomware, data theft, and business interruption by criminals around the globe,” said Giszczak, a cyber legal member at McDonald Hopkins.
“It’s no different than any other business risk that must be understood and addressed.” 
Giszczak and a panel of experts will be addressing the problems businesses face online at a Utica event on January 29, organized by the Sterling Heights Regional Chamber of Commerce (SHRCCI).

The Cyber Security for Business event, in partnership with Rochester-based IT company Auxiom and the Michigan Automotive and Defense Cyber Awareness Team (MADCAT), is aimed at boosting safety measures for large and small local companies.

The event will feature four speakers, including Matt Loria from Auxiom, Brian Pilarski from Brown and Brown, and Erin Stein from First State Bank, as well as Giszczak. The panel will instruct on ways to keep a business, organization, or person safe from cyber threats in the evolving era of technology. 

Pilarski said that while businesses "don't think twice" about protecting physical property, many are slower to realize the need for online safety. 

The three biggest threats to businesses in 2019 were ransomware (a type of malware that prevents users from accessing their system without payment), business email compromise, and phishing scams, according to research by McDonald Hopkins.

"We are seeing these type of cyber attacks with businesses of all sizes, and all industries, every single day," Pilarski said. "Some of these attacks have been financially and organizationally significant, threatening the business' survival."

Stacy Ziarko, president and CEO of SHRCCI, said that discussions around cyber security are important within today's changing technology, and that the chamber were proud to be hosting the panel. 

The event costs $20 to $30, depending on membership with SHRCCI and MADCAT, and more information can be found here.
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Kate Roff is an award-winning freelance writer and journalism educator, currently based out of Detroit. She is the managing editor of Metromode and Model D. Contact her at