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Michigan Announces Cyber Initiative

October 7, 2011

Gov. Rick Snyder today released an action plan that that will help defend Michigan against cyber attacks and position the state to take advantage of opportunities in the growing cybersecurity industry. The initiative was announced at the Michigan Cyber Summit, held at Eastern Michigan University in Ypsilanti.
Joining in the summit were U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano; Howard Schmidt, White House cybersecurity coordinator and special assistant to the president; and U.S. Reps. John Dingell, Mike Rogers and Hansen Clarke. The event served as the national launch of National Cyber Security Awareness Month.

"The benefits of online technology are enormous," Snyder said. "Instant communication and convenient service delivery are just some of the ways our lives are enhanced by the Internet. Unfortunately, attacks on our personal safety and economic security through the Internet continue to grow and expand. Whether it's identity theft, espionage or those who prey on our children, these threats affect all of us - families, businesses and government at all levels. Michigan is taking a leadership role with regard to protecting the vulnerable ecosystem in the cyber world, and in accelerating the economic development and growth of the cybersecurity industry. We look forward to continuing our close collaboration with our federal partners on this critical issue." 

Snyder pointed out that Michigan's talent and resources have been instrumental in building and advancing Internet technology, making the state well positioned for its leadership role. For example, Internet 2 was designed and introduced in southeast Michigan. Michigan also led the way in implementing state government cybersecurity measures. In addition, five Michigan colleges and universities are designated by the National Security Agency as National Centers of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance."

The Michigan Cyber Initiative will:

  • Create a "Cyber Command Center" under the control of the Michigan State Police to coordinate combined efforts of cyber emergency responders.
  • Create a Michigan Cyber Defense Response Team to support state government and key stakeholders.
  • Further Michigan's rich history of leadership in cybersecurity, keeping Michigan ahead of the nation in protecting its government networks and systems.
  • Use the talent and capital within the state, including strong partnerships with universities, to lead the way in technology initiatives that position the state for success in cybersecurity.
  • Provide a collaborative task force for sharing information and intelligence related to homeland security through the Michigan Intelligence Operations Center (MIOC), which operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week. 
  • Develop a curriculum focused on enhancing the overall advancement of cybersecurity.
  • Accelerate the economic development and growth of the cybersecurity industry, providing innovative economic development opportunities.
  • Provide an online cyber toolkit for safeguarding homes, businesses, government and schools.
  • Support the Michigan Attorney General's Cyber Safety Initiative (CSI) for children in grades kindergarten through eight.

A full version of the Michigan Cyber Initiative, as well as the new cyber toolkit, can be found at http://www.michigan.gov/cybersecurity

"This initiative underscores Michigan's commitment to cybersecurity," said David Behen, Chief Information Officer for the State of Michigan.  "It's an action plan that offers clear approaches for safeguarding our families, protecting Michigan's infrastructure and shielding our economy."

The Summit (http://events.esd.org/) addressed a variety of cyber security issues affecting business, education, information technology, economic development, law enforcement and personal use. 

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