Your business could be impacted by a cyberattack, even if you aren’t the direct target. That’s what happened to Singapore Airlines last year. The airlines had to remediate a costly breach that exposed confidential details of 580,000 of its frequent flier program members, but it wasn’t the airline that was attacked.
The breach happened through a third-party vendor called Sita that provided a passenger service system used by one of Singapore Airlines’ Star Alliance member airlines.
This is just one example of a supply chain attack, there are others that you may have experienced yourself.
Another type of supply chain attack happens when a software company has a breach of its systems. This happened in the case of Kaseya, a software provider for managed IT remote connections. Its own software was infected with ransomware, which then quickly spread to multiple IT providers and the customers that they serviced. This one supply chain company attack resulted in roughly 1,500 companies being infected with ransomware.
And what about non-digital suppliers? Most people remember the ransomware attack on Colonial Pipeline in 2021. It took down a major supply line of petroleum products to the east coast for nearly a week and caused gas prices to go up nationwide.
Unfortunately, these types of supply chain attacks have been growing and are predicted to continue their upward trajectory. In just the first quarter of 2021, supply chain attacks rose by 42%. Additionally, the number of individuals impacted went up by a whopping 564%, which represented seven million people in total being affected during those three months.
It seems unfair that a breach of one of your suppliers would negatively impact your company. But our digital systems are so connected, and trade is global, meaning a cyberattack halfway around the world could impact U.S. residents and businesses.
No matter what size business you have, you can expect to see potential impacts from a supply chain attack this year. However, this doesn’t mean you have to resign yourself to being collateral damage. There are network security protections you can put in place to mitigate your risk of being negatively impacted.
Steps to Reduce Your Risk of Being Affected by a Supply Chain Breach
List Out All Suppliers/Vendors & Potential Risks
First, you’ll need to shed some light on exactly where your risk may be when it comes to your supply chain. Any cloud providers you work with could pose a ransomware or data breach risk should their systems be breached.
If you’re a retailer or product manufacturer, then having one of your goods and materials suppliers go down for a week or more due to an attack could cause you to miss customer order delivery deadlines.
It’s important to shed light on where your business continuity is reliant on the operations of another company.
Inquire About Security With Your Vendors
It’s time to have the “IT security talk” with your vendors. As one of their customers, you have a right to know how they are protecting data that you may be sharing with them. This might be your own business’s data (tax ID, banking details, etc.) as well as the personally identifiable information (PII) of your customers or employees, in the case of a cloud service.
Learn what safeguards they have in place, so you know how much risk there is in doing business with them.
Look at Your Own IT Security
If the software you are using gets infected with ransomware, do you have detection systems that will stop it from spreading throughout your network? Are your employees regularly trained on password security and how to spot phishing emails?
If you want to mitigate a breach of your own systems as the result of an attack on a digital vendor, you should have robust and automated security in place for your network that will monitor and respond to threats in real-time. We can help with this.
It’s estimated that approximately 53% of organizations have exposure to supply chain attacks and not enough safeguards in place.
Add Redundancy Into Your Supply Chain
If you have two suppliers for the same raw material instead of one, then you’ve reduced the risk from a supply chain cyberattack. If one supplier stops operations, you have a secondary source.
Look for ways you can hedge your bets by adding redundancy into your supply chain for things like your internet service provider, products and materials suppliers, and anywhere else possible.
This helps to ensure your business doesn’t become too reliant on a single supply chain company.
Schedule a Supply Chain Security Audit Today!
Don’t get taken off guard by a breach in your supply chain. Quantum PC Services can help your Sturgeon Bay area business with a review of your current supply chain risks and a plan to mitigate them in the future.
Contact us today to learn more! Call 920-256-1214 or reach us online.