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Meet Michael Connelly '19

Preventing Cyberattacks with "Big Four" Accounting Firm Deloitte

Michael chose Emmanuel because of its location in Boston and its proximity to the city's "big players," specifically its leading names in the financial industry.

Two decades ago, computer programmers were concerned that mayhem would ensue when the clock struck midnight on January 1, 2000, as most complex computer systems weren't prepared to recognize dates beyond the twentieth century. While a summer 2018 intern at Fidelity Investments, Michael worked with the very team established to mitigate the effects of this potential technological breakdown, known as the Millennium Bug.

Learning and developing in a group that was founded due to crisis made me want to help solve problems rather than fear them.

Today, the Fidelity Center for Applied Technology (FCAT), the research & development arm of their financial technology department, is an innovation catalyst that helps clients imagine the possibilities of new ideas and technologies such as augmented reality, artificial intelligence, digital currency, the future of work and the "gig economy."

"My time there was filled with accelerated learning on emerging technologies and new management styles known as Agile and Design Thinking," Michael says. "One of the projects I worked on was directly related to keeping information proprietary."  

The internship had a profound effect on Michael's career journey. Shortly before his graduation, the management majro secured a role at "Big Four" accounting firm Deloitte as a cyber-risk consultant in the Financial Risk and Advisory practice. There, he helps clients build cyber-security strategies in defense of data hacking and data privacy.

"Brand image can be torn down overnight from a data breach," he says. "As e-commerce grows, it is imperative that businesses have adequate protection from individuals looking to exploit weakness in company systems."

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