Secure your supply chain by following these 5 essential tips
Advanced attackers rarely target their victims directly, instead reaching them via vulnerabilities in their supply chains. Here’s how to stop them.
Today’s procurement processes often incorporate multiple technologies to streamline mission-critical operations and automate routine tasks. Each of these technologies and processes also adds to your attack surface, giving attackers more potential entry points to your environment. Furthermore, since we’re talking about procurement, many of these entry points exist outside your direct control.
Cybersecurity must be central to any business process, including subscription management, invoice management, and procurement. The threats are real, and they are abundant, existing in the form of malicious software (malware) and social engineering attacks like email phishing. Many attacks against procurement and supply chains incorporate multiple methods.
How can you improve cybersecurity at your company?
Here are five essential tips to protect your business:
#1. Invest in security awareness training
Perhaps one of the most common misconceptions about cybersecurity is that it’s seen as the responsibility of the IT department. In reality, however, everyone in the business is a potential target, so it is everyone’s responsibility to do their part to protect it. Furthermore, given the rise of social engineering attacks, it should be clear that people are the first and last line of defence. Ongoing security awareness training helps create a culture of accountability, and it also helps your employees protect themselves from cyberattacks both at home and at work.
#2. Take a proactive approach to security
The best way for business leaders to approach cybersecurity is from a standpoint of it’s not a matter of if they’re attacked, but when. This line of thinking is vital for changing the business’s security posture from a reactive one to a proactive one, in which they actively hunt threats and stop them in their tracks. Modern technologies, such as AI-powered threat analysis solutions, can also help advance proactive security.
#3. Use virtual cards for online payments
A virtual payment card works in exactly the same way as a physical one, the main difference being that there’s no physical component that can get lost or mislaid. However, virtual cards also provide a lesser-known – but very significant – security and compliance advantage. Since virtual card numbers are unique to each transaction, there’s a greatly reduced risk of identity theft and fraud.
#4. Build multiple layers of cyber defence
No single defensive measure is ever going to be immune to cyberattacks, which is why every layer of security should be bolstered by another. This is especially important in account-based security, where usernames and passwords have long been the gold standard. However, such credentials can also be phished, hence why it’s important for procurement and finance teams to use multifactor authentication (MFA) to verify and protect user identities.
#5. Encrypt all data in storage and in transit
In the era of hybrid work and cloud computing, physical security measures have largely been rendered irrelevant. With businesses now routinely storing and sending sensitive information online, it has never been more important to protect your internal and external communications. Encryption is an obvious and highly effective solution, but it should never be taken for granted. Even if it’s provided, it might not be enabled by default. Ideally, businesses should have total control and ownership of their encryption keys as well.
Cybersecurity is not a destination, and there’s no such thing as a business that’s immune from attacks. Furthermore, the B2B sector is a favourite target for attackers owing to their relatively large financial, technology, and procurement footprints. This is why cybersecurity should never be considered an afterthought, but instead an integral part of every business process and IT solution.