Cybersecurity and Supply Chain Management, Expected Challenges and Solutions

Cybercrime is increasing at an alarming rate, and it negatively affects supply chain management. The goal is to find specific and effective solutions to combat these problems. These damages often stem from email, URL connections, and malware attacks. Education combined with the effective solutions described below can successfully guard against attacks.

Recent Attacks on Supply Chain

The attack on Kaseya was one of the most expensive forms of ransomware hacking. Hackers managed to cripple numerous accounts through the remote monitoring scheme, VSA. The cybercriminals demanded $70 million to restore the system after the infection.

Through a data breach, the Marriott International hotel chain suffered a supply chain attack. This trickled down to over 5 million customers of the chain. The breach may include information from the company, such as contracts, account data, and internal information.

Affected by an outage, navigation and fitness guru Garmin found that some files were encrypted, and this took services offline. It appears this was a ransomware incident affecting many website functions, customer support, applications for customers, and internal communications. Hackers demanded $10 million for the release of information.

Supply chain management is particularly susceptible to these attacks because of the lack of detection, creativity of hackers, and a lack of anticipation of these attacks.

Vulnerabilities of Supply Chains

Ransomware, malware, email breaches, and phishing attempts are all ways cybercriminals can cripple a company through their supply chain. Outside sources use email to break the defenses of supply chain management by embedding links that open to external sites that may infect the computer. Others will use these emails to obtain confidential login credentials to certain accounts.

Spyware may infect a computer to gather intel about what is necessary to increase the chances of a successful attack through the dissemination of malware. Malware infections may come through an email breach or by an employee opening a link to a website that can immediately infect the computer.

Hackers use ransomware to hijack the network and hold it for ransom until a certain price is met. However, once the company pays the price, the hackers can and often do infect the computers again for a higher price.

Challenges and Solutions

Challenges for supply chain management include the following:

  • Untrained/Uneducated Staff – Staff members that do not have the training to identify or the education to understand these types of attacks can become a liability to the company when facing cybersecurity breaches.
  • No Plan for Facing an Attack – The company needs a plan to defend against an attack before one ever occurs.
  • Creative cybercriminals – Cybercriminals continually find innovative ways to deliver their attacks. Hackers are always finding new ways to implement an attack, no matter how many defenses exist.

Possible solutions to these challenges include:

  1. Countermeasures Even If 100% Secure – Even if the network is already 100% secure without any breaches, it is vital to have countermeasures in place to have a plan of action to defend the system.
  2. Employee Education – Management and staff should know how to defend against these attacks. Teach your team what warning signs to watch for.
  3. Cybersecurity Tools – Purchasing tools that work to identify leaks, breaches and other threats can defend a company from outside attacks and internal vulnerabilities.
  4. Dark Web Scan – A dark web scan will search the dark web and sift through extensive databases that include stolen data to see if yours is there.

Threats Against Cloud Computing

Cloud computing is sometimes more vulnerable due to the increased downloads that occur on and through the Cloud, especially when employees are ending their contracts. Some hackers use certificate infections to infiltrate applications and accounts. Many workers will also authorize a third-party app which can become an infection point. Additionally, with cloud use so high, unauthorized applications may go unnoticed until it is too late.

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