The Increase in Supply Chain Attacks And How to Protect Against Them

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The big issue with supply chain attacks is that they cause a ripple effect and can drastically affect many other links in the chain. As a result, a single attack could essentially cripple an entire supply chain cutting off resources meant for consumers.

Supply Attacks Increasing

By now, everyone knows about the SolarWinds attack and the subsequent fallout. Additional supply chain attacks on Colonial Pipeline, a meat processing provider, Kaseya, and some water treatment plants across the U.S. have disrupted operations at various intervals and cost Americans millions. Some of these attacks, if not quickly thwarted, such as the Oldsmar Water attack, could have even resulted in fatalities.

The increase in supply chain attacks started with the pandemic and has increased exponentially over the past two years. The issue is that many of the targeted organizations are tightly connected to other businesses or government agencies. Once criminals successfully breach one target, they set their sights on another and may have an easier time of it since the initial breach often contains information allowing them to access other third-party vendors.

Security experts expect the trend to continue and foresee supply chain attacks quadrupling in the next year.

How to Protect Against Supply Chain Attacks

Even if your own business is not considered a critical part of a supply chain, if one is targeted, your company may be affected. Therefore, it’s not enough to protect yourself against direct criminals but also to expand your security to anyone you do business with, are connected to, or work with, in any way. Some of the ways you can bulletproof your organization includes:

  • Vet third-party vendors and businesses thoroughly with complete background checks.
  • Audit your business process to look for any interdependencies and tighten up security around those vulnerable pieces.
  • Invest in high-quality surveillance cameras and other equipment for all facilities.
  • Institute strict access control to high-value assets, data, and restricted areas.
  • Constantly monitor all aspects of the supply chain that affects your business. This may include hiring additional security personnel to provide 24/7 surveillance.
  • Identify all vulnerabilities by performing a thorough risk assessment of the entire company, buildings, staff, and third parties.
  • Monitor all internal and external resources constantly.
  • Increase security around access points (incoming/outgoing).
  • Educate yourself on the ways perpetrators attack supply chains and learn how to protect yourself.
  • Consult the U.S. government websites to see what they offer in terms of cybersecurity protections and free resources for business.

Cybersecurity professionals note that 66% of supply chain hackers go after source code so they can easily infiltrate every point along the supply chain and disrupt specific aspects at will. If you have questions about how to tighten the security of your supply chain, contact DMAC today.

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