WMU News

IT forum addresses security, reliability, compliance

March 11, 2005

KALAMAZOO--Corporate scandals and Internet security breaches have spawned a host of new regulations and new headaches for America's information technology sector.

To help members of industry and academia deal with the fallout, Western Michigan University's Haworth College of Business will sponsor a one-day conference on "Facilitating Information Security, Reliability and Compliance" from 7:30 a.m. to 3:50 p.m. Friday, March 25, in the Fetzer Center on the University's main campus in Kalamazoo.

The event, the fourth annual WMU-HCoB IT Forum, is a one-day conference that will feature presentations by U.S. Rep. Fred Upton, chairman of the House Subcommittee on Telecommunications and the Internet; Sebastian Holst, president of the Compliance Consortium and vice president of marketing for Axentis Inc.; and Robert Du Charme, security training manager for Cisco Systems Inc.'s Critical Infrastructure Assurance Group.

J. Michael Tarn, WMU associate professor of computer information systems and forum coordinator, says the financial scandals involving companies such as Enron and Arthur Anderson as well as the continued wariness of Internet users worried about their privacy have been painful reminders of the need for greater information reliability and corporate accountability.

"Many profit and nonprofit organizations have invested a great deal of money in securing information and complying with new legislation," Tarn says. "Our forum will be an excellent opportunity to learn about ways to strategically and practically deal with hackers; the Sarbanes-Oxley Act; and HIPPA, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act."

The cost of the forum varies and includes materials, meals and snacks. The rates are: corporations, $60; alumni, $40; members of academia, $35; and students, $20. Seats are limited, and refunds will not be made after March 21.

For more information or to register, visit the Web at <cis.hcob.wmich.edu/itforum> or contact Michael Tarn at (269) 387-5428 or <mike.tarn@wmich.edu>.

The major activities scheduled during the forum are as follows.

From 8:30 to 9:30 a.m., Upton is tentatively scheduled to speak about "Facing Challenges in a New Information Era." His focus is expected to be on the removal of regulatory barriers that are thwarting the deployment of IP-enabled services to the consumer and to encompass cybersecurity issues and the latest as well as potential federal regulations and policies that have had a significant, long-run impact on business operation in the new economy.

From 10:15 to 11:15 a.m., Holst will speak about "The Three R's of Compliance: Rescue, Results and Reward." This session will reference specific corporations when possible and review the essential steps in enhancing data, process and applications to meet ongoing regulatory and investor requirements, align operations, sustain compliance, and ultimately connect compliance activities to corporate performance.

From 12:45 to 1:45 p.m., Du Charme will speak about "Network Security--It's Not a Box." This session will focus on the need to view security as a process that incorporates different technologies throughout the entire infrastructure and will cover some of the factors that organizations must be aware of to protect their enterprises.

From 2:15 to 3:30 p.m., a professional panel will discuss the forum's theme issues while a second panel will simultaneously discuss student internships.

Media contact: Jeanne Baron, 269 387-8400, jeanne.baron@wmich.edu

WMU News
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