CHICAGO, April 27, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- More than 500 Chicago-area cybersecurity experts have already signed up for this week’s day-long Virtual Summit, hosted by Data Connectors, representing the largest cybersecurity community in North America.

The 2020 Chicago Virtual Cybersecurity Summit will take place this Thursday, April 30th, enabling attendees to obtain needed information about emerging threats to computer networks and the data on them, despite the ongoing quarantine brought about by the global spread of the COVID-19 virus. A keynote presentation from Patrick Hogan, Assistant Special Agent in Charge and supervisor of the Electronic Crimes Task Force at the Chicago branch of the US Secret Service, leads the full-day agenda.  The Summit will also feature industry expert presenters and virtual exhibits from cybersecurity solution providers.

“The physical wellbeing of our communities continues to be a primary focus of our nation, but law enforcement must remain vigilant to bad actors who use the COVID-19 pandemic to double down on their attempts to disrupt the banking and payment system,” stated Assistant Special Agent in Charge Chris Leone, of the US Secret Service. “Our ECTFs continue to build effective relationships with the private sector by introducing best practices to integrate law enforcement into an organizations cyber-incident response, gather evidence of the cyber-crime and eventually bring the bad actor to justice.”

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In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Data Connectors has moved its full schedule of planned regional events online. Both panelists and attendees have raved about the opportunities the virtual sessions have provided: “This has been a great experience and productive summit,” says Donny Fan, CIO at APLA Health in Los Angeles.  “Data Connectors has done a great job of bringing together the variety of vendors from the physical conference to the live, virtual summit.” 

In addition, E.J. Hilbert, CISO/Managing Director at CNM, a panelist at the Los Angeles and Louisville summits, says, “The format gives the audience an update on trends and direction in cybersecurity, where we can learn from others' experience, network with our peers, and interact with both solution providers and government agencies.”

The Virtual Summit will also feature an interactive panel discussion with Chief Information Officers (CIOs) and Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) from organizations throughout Chicagoland, including:

  • Dr. Michael Chahino, CIO, Elgin Community College
  • Jim Serr, CIO, Joliet Community College
  • Kenneth Townsend, VP/CISO, R1 RCM
  • Ryan Pilkus, CIO, RJW Logistics Group
  • Dean Sorensen, vCISO and Strategic Business Advisor, Sentinel Technologies
  • Adeola Adeoti, CTO/CISO Teasy Mobile International

Attendees will ask questions and interact online with the Secret Service Keynote executive, CISOs, as well as each other and the organizations who will feature their solutions at the event.  Solution providers at the Chicago Cybersecurity Summit include CriticalStart, Axis Security, Armor, Pure Storage, Illusive Networks, Netskope, Ivanti and over 20 other cybersecurity vendor partners.

The Summit will take place on Thursday, April 30, 2020 and start at 8:30am CDT. Registration is free for qualified professionals, who can also obtain Continuing Professional Education (CPE) credits for participation. More information can be found at

Data Connectors’ Virtual Summits are planned through the end of June. They continue to focus on the local and regional requirements for cities such as Philadelphia, Minneapolis/Des Moines, Tampa and the eastern provinces in Canada. The firm will continue its physical, in-person Cybersecurity Conference Series after the COVID-19 crisis has subsided, although the company said it has been heartened by the response to the virtual meetings and is studying ways to incorporate them into its regular schedule.

Details for all events 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 over 45 cities across North America each year, and also provides interactions with the community via Virtual Summits, Web Briefings, and regular communications. 

Note to reporters:  If you wish to attend these sessions at no charge, please contact Michael Hiskey, Chief Strategy Officer, at +1.636.778.9495, or

The @DataConnectors #CISO Community continues to collaborate with #Cybersecurity professionals, executives. @SecretService Keynote in Chicago highlights #COVID19 concerns, need for vigilance #CyberSecVirtual