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Cybersecurity Concerns in Supply Chain: How BIA Can Help

The global pandemic exposed companies that relied on lean inventory models. Typically providing excellent efficiency and cost-effectiveness, businesses are dealing with work disruptions, including significant transportation delays and limited access to supplies. Their leaders are addressing these unfortunate issues in the present day while also working towards supply chain resilience for the long term. As a result, they are strengthening their previously overlooked cybersecurity efforts.

The risks associated with cyberattacks on global supply chains have never been higher. A new study found that 97% of firms have been impacted by a cybersecurity breach in their supply chain, and 93% admitted they had suffered a direct cybersecurity breach because of weaknesses in their supply chain. This surge is driving a new record for total data breaches and the complexity of the attacks. Just as business leaders have worked around the clock to adopt digital operations amidst the global pandemic, hackers have learned new ways to infiltrate vulnerable supply chain processes. It is a matter of not if – but when your business will be fighting off supply chain cyber-attacks.

Suppose you are responsible for your organization’s data, systems, and networks. In that case, supply chain disruptions can cause substantial impacts on your company’s bottom line, legal and regulatory actions, data integrity, business operations – and your reputation. Critical hits can result from computer viruses, ransomware, hardware and software failures. They can also occur due to misconfigurations, human and coding errors, manufacturing defects, flood, fire or theft. Having reliable data backup is not enough. Prolonged outages can occur for various reasons and last for several hours, days, and even over a month – and some businesses never recover.

There are also internal threats of a non-malicious nature. Facebook recently went down for several hours due to a maintenance error on critical servers; Sony’s networks have previously been down for over a month concerning a data breach. Chip shortages and supply chain issues should be a concern as they are critical components of networks, systems, and data. Cloud architecture helps – but is not a silver bullet to address all risks. Moreover, cloud architecture creates new risks. A well-developed Business Continuity Plan that has been independently verified to handle modern, evolving cyber threats is critical. It will minimize disruption to the health of your company’s financial and operational stability, as well as to its reputation from today’s devastating cyber impacts.

In addition to these efforts, consider a business impact analysis (BIA) which assesses the potential impact of a disruption of business operations that result from an incident. Withum’s BIA identifies critical elements of an organization’s information systems based on the consequences of being compromised from threats explicitly targeting your organization and industry, regardless of whether it is malicious or accidental. BIA correlates critical information system elements of your business (systems, networks, and data) with the organization’s mission-critical and business-critical operations. Then, it identifies the most critical information system elements based on the cost that the disruption would occur.

Withum integrates its diverse expertise in cyber and beyond to provide realistic targeted critical risk identification, risk management, and mitigation. Withum’s BIA will help ensure your business is ready before critical impacts occur, as well as where to align specific resources to address threats and mitigate crippling and potentially catastrophic business impacts.

Contact Withum’s Cyber and Information Security Team to learn how we can help.

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