Slotkin Convenes Cyber Security Discussion with Local Leaders

January 17, 2020
Press Release

DIMONDALE, MI –– U.S. Rep. Elissa Slotkin (MI-08) convened local governments, businesses and financial institutions in Michigan’s 8th district today to discuss tools for preventing and responding to cyber attacks. Chris DeRush, the Chief Security Officer for the State of Michigan and Lt. James Ellis of the Michigan State Police’s Cyber Command Center also led the call, which brought together dozens of participants from across the district, representing governments, private companies, utilities and schools.

 

Slotkin convened today’s call from the Michigan State Police Cyber Command Center, following weeks of escalating tensions between the U.S. and Iran that have increased the risk of cyber attacks against U.S. businesses and local governments. The Iranian government has a history of retaliating against other countries, and especially the United States, with asymmetric attacks, with cyber attacks being a central element of that strategy.

"In the year that I've been a Congresswoman, one of the most common things I've asked about when I go visit a local town supervisor or a school district, or a business, is cyber security," Slotkin said on the call. "And we know a lot of our smaller communities in particular have been attacked and on the receiving end of a constant stream of cyber threats, not necessarily from a state actor, like Russia or China or Iran, but from just a grab bag of folks who are trying to either get to someone's data, destroy equipment or ransom that data."

 

"This elevated concern about potential Iranian-affiliated threat was a good opportunity to talk about preventing attacks, more generally, that many of us are seeing across our systems, especially those who are responsible for maintaining people or community and data," Slotkin added.