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New cyber security guidelines could impact local Michigan manufacturers

Thousands of Southwest Michigan jobs could be in jeopardy if local companies don't adhere to new federal cyber security laws.

Berrien County hosts 29 of them, seven are in Cass County, nine are in Van Buren County. 

Those defense manufacturers generate billions into the state's economy. Right now they are looking at bills ranging from $1000 to $10,000 dollars, a big payout for a small business. 

That's why the Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center says they are working with these local companies to find affordable ways to comply with the new standards. 

The Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center says, that while this can hurt a small business, these guidelines are actually a good thing. And they want to make sure it can work for them. The organization is providing educational workshops throughout the year. They want these companies to embrace the new guidelines. Because it could keep their business safe from cyber criminals. 

"While these requirements add a new set of standards for anyone who does work with the department of defense," said Elliott Forsyth with the Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center.  "A lot of these are just good practices."

Companies have until the end of 2017 to get equipped, so time is of the essence. 

The Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center says they are working fast. The next informational is at the beginning of March.

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