SolarWinds Hack, Ransomware, Regulations Figure Prominently as Virtual Cybersecurity Summits Resume in 2021

Department of Homeland Security, Industry Experts Comment on 2021 Trends, Directions, Continued Revelations on Government and Private Network Breaches Stemming from Russian Cyberattack

DENVER, CO. – JANUARY 6, 2021 Data Connectors, representing the largest cybersecurity community in North America, continues its industry-leading series of Virtual Summits, with over 15 past annual gatherings in the Salt Lake City and Denver areas.

The 2021 Salt Lake City and Denver Virtual Cybersecurity Summit will take place on Wednesday, January 13, and is slated to allow the local community of cybersecurity professionals to gain insights and education regarding the latest updates and challenges in the industry, despite the continued effects of the COVID-19 crisis.

Headlining this summit is Region VIII Cybersecurity Advisor David Sonheim from the Department of Homeland Security Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA). He will provide an overview of the active exploitation of the SolarWinds Orion software and how those events resulted in the establishment of a Cyber Unified Coordination Group (UCG) as a Government response. As well, he will discuss its extensive and lasting impact on both private industry and government agencies.

Sonheim, a Colorado native, will deliver his remarks, “Overview of the SolarWinds Supply Chain Compromise,” during the Summit’s main keynote on Wednesday.

“The key now is to build on our public and private partnerships by sharing information to assist the community in understanding their risk exposure while taking steps to identify and mitigate any further compromise,” Sonheim said. “For the keynote we’re going to step back and take a look at previous supply chain compromises, and review the timeline of the response efforts leading to the activation of the UCG as part of the National Cyber Incident Response Plan. By understanding the risk factors that drove these chain of events we can better work together across industry and Government to find a collaborative path forward as we respond to future events. So much of our nation’s critical infrastructure is in the hands of private industry partners which is why a collective approach is vital to its protection. CISA stands ready to help and provide advice to organizations, in partnership with numerous government agencies,” he added.

The Summit will also feature industry expert presenters and virtual exhibits from cybersecurity solution providers, as well as live, topical expert panel discussions fielded by leading subject-matter experts. At the Summit, industry experts will dive into topics around identity and access management amid the rush to work from home in 2020, and the key trends on which Chief Information Officers (CIOs) and Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) should most concern themselves in 2021 in panel discussions. 

Data Connectors, which has conducted physical conferences since 1999, rapidly responded to the COVID-19 crisis, moving its full schedule of planned events online. The cybersecurity community has in turn responded to the opportunity: more than twice as many people have signed up for the virtual regional events than had registered to attend the previously scheduled in-person meetings.

The Virtual Summit will also feature a live, interactive panel discussion, with some of the top CISOs and CIOs from organizations throughout the Rocky Mountain region. This week’s panelists include:

  • Dan Anderson, CISO and Privacy Officer, Lifescan
  • Eric Sorenson, Chief Information Security Officer, doTERRA
  • Steve Winterfeld, Advisory CISO, Akamai Technologies
  • Dr. Ken Knapton, Senior Vice President & Chief Information Officer, Merrick Bank
  • Niel Nickolaisen, Chief Information Officer, OC Tanner
  • Navpreet Jatana, Deputy CISO, Zions Bancorporation
  • Nathaniel “Peter” Walton, Chief Information Officer / Director of Communications, 76th Operational Response Command (OR)

Attendees will ask questions and interact online with the CISOs, as well as each other and the organizations who will feature their solutions at the event. Featured solutions providers at this summit include Attivo Networks, Cloudflare, Avanan, Capsule 8 and more.

The Summit will take place on Wednesday, January 13, 2021 at 8:00 a.m. MT. Registration is free for qualified professionals, who can also obtain Continuing Professional Education (CPE) credits for participation. 

Data Connectors Virtual Summits continue to focus on the local and regional requirements for cities and regions across North America, with upcoming Summits taking place for Eastern Canada, Detroit and Indianapolis, Minneapolis and Des Moines, Ohio, Boston, and more.

More information can be found at

About Data Connectors

Since 1999, Data Connectors ( has facilitated the collaboration between cybersecurity professionals and solution providers. Today, the community comprises over 650,000 members and 250 active vendor partners. Members enjoy informative education from industry luminaries, innovative solution providers and government agencies such as the FBI, InfraGard, US Secret Service and the Department of Homeland Security. Data Connectors brings live conferences to cities across North America each year, and also provides interactions with the community via Virtual Summits, Web Briefings, and regular communications.

SolarWinds Hack, Ransomware, Regulations Fi …

Industry News Posted by Jen Greco on Jan 6, 2021

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