Play Ball or Go Home

The Weekly Report – September 26, 2022
Manufacturers can no longer afford to ignore cybersecurity measures.

Manufacturers who work with prime Department of Defense contractors have known for years about the Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC), a new federal requirement for cyber safety standards, but now the date for compliance has been set — and it is rapidly approaching.

Manufacturers who haven’t achieved the rigorous CMMC certification by October 2023 risk losing their DoD contracts. If you’re not certified, you’re out.

We devote a lot of Enterprise Minnesota’s editorial real estate to cybersecurity because it hasn’t become a priority for enough manufacturers. Too many would rather risk losing large sums of money, access to their internal networks, or exposing their data to ransom from the ever-increasing number of cyber thugs.

In the most recent edition of the magazine, Robb Murray, one of our top contributing writers, got insights from several manufacturers and cybersecurity experts to help illustrate the critical nature of their vulnerabilities, whether they serve DoD clients or not.

One of Robb’s interviewees was Laura Eckholm, executive vice president of L&M Radiator in Hibbing, about how her company recently lost nearly a half-million dollars to cyber criminals.

“They were pretending to be one of our vendors. The tone of mail made it seem like everything was legitimate,” Ekholm told Robb. “It seemed real, but none of it was.”

Two years ago, Enterprise Minnesota began asking questions regarding cybersecurity as part of our annual State of Manufacturing® survey, and it was quickly revealed that these types of situations are almost commonplace now.

Fortunately, manufacturers can now choose from a growing number of experts available to help take cybersecurity measures to strengthen the security of their systems. But these take time to implement, especially when facing a compliance deadline.

“It’s not something where you can snap your fingers and it’s done in a short amount of time,” said John Norris, owner of Atscott Manufacturing and Tower Solutions. “If you haven’t gotten started, and if you want to do work with the federal government, you better get yourself pulled in. And they better do it sooner than later because it’s not an easy process.”

Read Cyber Scam on our website

Read the Fall 2022 issue

Events Calendar

September 28 – Ensuring Business Continuity Through Succession Planning
Business succession planning workshop. Exclusive to manufacturers. Online via Zoom.

State of Manufacturing® focus groups
Contribute your insights and perspectives to our annual manufacturing survey. Mix of 10 focus groups, in-person and online, Sept.-Oct. Find your session and register today.

October 11 – Investing in Your People to Create Leaders at All Levels
Role of leadership development in today’s workplace. Exclusive to manufacturers. In-person in Owatonna.

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