Chris Conrardy, Chief Technology Officer of EWI, announced a pilot program to help small and medium-sized manufacturers (SMMs) address the threats of cyber attacks in an increasingly interconnected industry. This cybersecurity cooperative was introduced at an event on December 13th in Loveland, Colorado, “The Importance of Cybersecurity for Manufacturers.” This program was hosted by Manufacturer’s Edge, NoCO Manufacturing Partnership, and CAMA.
Manufacturing is undergoing a massive transformation today as game-changing, digitally driven technologies intensify the connectivity within the industry. The need to protect critical industrial systems and intellectual property has never been more important – or more difficult. The state of cybersecurity is constantly in flux as new vulnerabilities emerge and attackers adapt to defenses.
SMMs make up more than 90% of all U.S. manufacturers and constitute the backbone of US supply chains. Many, however, lack the expertise and resources necessary to adequately address their cybersecurity needs.
EWI’s pilot program is testing the effectiveness of a novel, non-profit, “cybersecurity cooperative” business model to simultaneously serve SMMs while developing a pool of cyber-savvy talent from disadvantaged communities. While the program is being tested in a rural region in Virginia, EWI actively seeks input from SMMs across the country with the goal of developing a cybersecurity cooperative that is affordable, accessible, and sustainable for SMMs nationwide.