As your business becomes increasingly reliant on vendors, suppliers and providers to support operations or deliver goods and services, managing security risk in your supply chain becomes more complex.
Attackers are aware of this fact and often target and use vendors as an access point to larger targets — like your organization. Having a plan in place with detailed measures to manage and mitigate supply chain risk is mission-critical, especially when a supply chain breach could compromise your systems, lead to outages, or exploit sensitive data.
What is supply chain security, and how do you achieve it?
The first step to establishing supply chain security is understanding the scope of your vendor relationships. This means taking inventory of all the vendors you use, from those who provide IT services or cloud storage solutions to those who manufacture products for you. Next, assess each one’s potential impact on your business operations in the event of an incident.
Once you have a clear picture of which vendors pose the greatest risks (and why), it’s time to start implementing measures to minimize and mitigate risk.
One way that organizations can reduce their exposure is by conducting thorough due diligence when selecting new vendors and when renewing existing contracts. Additionally, companies should require that all third parties they work with adhere to certain standards, such as having up-to-date cybersecurity policies in place and requiring regular penetration testing on any software or applications they develop before they’re deployed within your production environments.