SOURCE: SBDC Michigan

SBDC Michigan

March 22, 2016 16:25 ET

Michigan's Small Business Cyber Security Assessment Tool Now Offered in Spanish

Free Online Tool Has Been Used by 3,000 Individuals

GRAND RAPIDS, MI--(Marketwired - Mar 22, 2016) - The Michigan Small Business Development Center (SBDC) continues to enhance its efforts to assist Michigan small businesses in evaluating risk of cyber threats with its free risk assessment tool by offering the site in Spanish.

The initiative, which centers on the "Small Business, Big Threat" website and assessment tool, evaluates cyber security risk and provides access to downloadable resources, online and in person cyber security training.

In the first four months since its launch, the Small Business, Big Threat website has engaged over 3,000 individuals, and in-person cyber security trainings have been held in Grand Rapids, Bay City and Lansing. Four more training events are scheduled through May, contributing to the program goal of increasing the cyber security awareness of 10,000 people.

In an effort to expand the initiative to a broader, growing audience, the website is now offered in Spanish.

"The Michigan SBDC launched www.pequeñonegociogranamenaza.com in an effort to raise cyber security awareness with a broader audience of small business owners and employees," said Zara Smith, SBDC Program Manager. "Approximately 5% of Michigan's population currently identifies as Hispanic, and that figure is projected to grow. The site www.pequeñonegociogranamenaza.com is aligned with the program's wide outreach goal."

The initiative was launched December 4, 2015 with a cyber security panel discussion and training held in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The initiative was developed and is operated by the MI-SBDC with funding support from the U.S. Small Business Administration. Grand Rapids-based technology firm Trivalent Group serves as the lead content production partner and cyber security experts.

The foundation of the initiative is a website, www.smallbusinessbigthreat.com, which allows individuals to take the free online assessment. At the conclusion of the assessment, the individuals receive a risk assessment report. From there, participants can choose from a variety of resources to engage with, including in-depth trainings, webinars, best practices, or industry articles on small business cyber security.

The information on the website is targeted to small business owners and employees who are non-technical. The assessment takes between 25 and 35 minutes to complete. The site has been live for a few weeks and already has received positive feedback.

"We piloted the program for a few weeks before launching publicly and saw notable results from participants," said Michigan SBDC Associate State Director Jennifer Deamud at the December news conference. "We are confident that Michigan small businesses will benefit from this tool and be more prepared to fight cyber threats."

"The ultimate goal is to arm small businesses with information, an assessment of their awareness, and an action plan," Brophy adds. "The assessment tool is the starting point, but we're hopeful that our webinars, in-person training and action plans will help protect Michigan small businesses against cyber-attacks."

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