Why is Cybersecurity Awareness and Training Required in the Supply Chain Industry?
The supply chain industry, like many others, is undergoing a digital transition, from task automation to the Internet of Things optimizing operations. However, this has increased the industry’s vulnerability to cyber-attacks. As the supply chain industry prepares to take yet another digital leap, cybersecurity awareness and training are becoming increasingly important for companies in the industry.
According to estimates, the supply chain industry was hit by 300 cybersecurity incidents in 2019. Two notable ransomware attacks resulted in the companies concerned being forced to shut down for a period of time. Fortunately, there are ways to reduce your company’s risk of being seriously harmed by cyber-attacks, such as employing a reputable cybersecurity consultant and advising firm or investing in targeted breach preparation assessments. But, ultimately, the first step is to understand why these attacks occur in the supply chain industry in the first place and what you can do to mitigate their impact on a basic, internal level.
Because of the nature of the business, the risk perimeter of supply chain organizations is often higher. Here are a few reasons why cybersecurity awareness and training are especially important for these businesses:
Relying on third-party vendors and service providers
Third-party logistics companies that provide shipping, packing, warehousing, and other services are needed by the supply chain industry. Even if your organization has a cybersecurity risk policy in place, your other suppliers and service providers who have access to your systems may not.
Conducting regular cybersecurity health checks on your suppliers should be a part of your protocol. After all, third-party suppliers have involved in around one-third of all IT breaches. Additionally, you should verify their websites to see if they are vulnerable to ‘watering hole attacks.’ According to Tech Advisory, fraudsters target vulnerable-looking websites and infect them with malware, infecting any computer that visits the site. Don’t let any of your company’s computers become part of this statistic.
Software and hardware are outsourced
Checking the hardware and software you employ should be part of your company’s cybersecurity risk and breach preparation evaluation. Although outsourcing software and hardware might help cut costs, a Tech News World article on counterfeit network equipment warns that it can compromise security. Apart from hacking, these tools — which may be infected with malware — can also be used to launch cyber-attacks. This allows hackers to bypass traditional cyber defenses, allowing them to take advantage of their target company’s technology and even delivery methods. Make sure you thoroughly inspect any software and hardware before purchasing it, and that you only purchase it from reliable sources.
Use of cutting-edge technologies
Innovative technology is continually disrupting supply chains, which means the sector needs to keep up with the newest cybersecurity training. Telematics, for example, has surpassed fleet management. This system, according to Verizon Connect’s telematics guide, entails the use of a device in a car. It keeps track of and communicates detailed information about the car, such as its position, fuel usage, and defects. This information is then supplied back to the organization, which might utilize it to identify workflow gaps. Cybercriminals, on the other hand, have figured out how to interfere with the device, allowing them to exploit the data for malevolent purposes such as vehicle theft and identity theft. Of all, if it means bettering your operations, there’s nothing wrong with experimenting with new technologies. But make sure you take the time to study them and understand how to use them safely.
Employees are unaware of the situation
Threats have become increasingly difficult to spot in recent months, ranging from phishing emails to ransomware disguised as charity efforts. Despite this, the majority of businesses throughout the world lack well-trained employees and suitable cybersecurity infrastructure to enable them to defend against such attacks. As a result, it is critical for supply chain companies, particularly those at the cutting edge of technology adoption, to invest in cybersecurity training and scenario-based tabletop assessments of incident response strategies. Because employees are the first-line defense, they must be properly trained.
Cybersecurity should be a top priority for every firm that wants to be technologically advanced. One of the most important steps an organization can take to mitigate the impact of cyber-attacks is to invest in a good cybersecurity awareness training program for staff, especially for supply chain organizations with a larger perimeter of exposure.