How to Prevent Supply Chain Attacks in 2022

You may have heard of supply chain attacks before, but what are they exactly? A supply chain attack is a type of cyberattack where the attacker targets a company or organisation by compromising one of its suppliers or service providers.

In other words, instead of attacking the organisation directly, the cybercriminal goes after a trusted entity outside your organisation that can easily convince your employees to disclose sensitive information or action fake invoices. Once the attacker has gained access to the third-party's systems, they can then use that access to launch an attack on the organisation itself. Supply chain attacks are becoming increasingly common, and they can be very difficult to detect and defend against.

One of the most famous examples of a supply chain attack is the NotPetya malware outbreak that took place in 2017, where attackers used compromised software from a Ukrainian accounting software firm called MeDoc to spread the NotPetya malware throughout Ukraine and other parts of Eastern Europe. This ultimately led to billions of dollars in damages for the companies that were affected by the outbreak.

That's why it's important for organisations to be aware of the threat and take steps to protect themselves. Here are four ways you can reduce the risk of supply chain attacks in 2022:

1. Educate your employees about supply chain attacks

Your employees are your first line of defence when it comes to protecting your organisation against supply chain attacks. They need to be aware of the threat and know what to look out for. Make sure they understand what a supply chain attack is and how it works. Teach them to be suspicious of unsolicited emails, links, and attachments. And remind them never to click on anything without knowing what it is and where it came from.

2. Conduct background checks on your third-party vendors

One way to reduce the risk of a supply chain attack is to only do business with reputable, trustworthy vendors. Make sure you conduct thorough background checks on all your third-party suppliers and service providers, verify their identity and check their references. Be sure to also ask about their security measures and what they're doing to protect their own systems (and by extension, your organisation) from attack.

3. Implement security measures throughout your supply chain

Even if you're confident in your third-party vendors' security measures, it's still important to implement your own security measures throughout your organisation's entire supply chain. This includes things like creating strong passwords, encrypting data, and using Multi-factor authentication wherever possible. By taking these extra steps, you can mitigate the risk of a successful supply chain attack.

4. Monitor your systems for signs of compromise

Supply chain communications are often trusted, making it easy for VEC attacks to disguise themselves in with legitimate and valid emails. Since these threats come from a trusted, albeit compromised vendor and partner accounts, most organisations generally cannot identify an attack until it’s too late. VEC attacks emphasise the importance of security tools to stop supply chain compromise. An AI and Machine Learning platform continuously monitors communications between vendors and partners, and provides a real-time, proactive risk assessment, preventing these targeted supply chain attacks. Furthermore, having a security platform that baselines good behaviour will help in detecting anomalies and block malicious, unwanted emails that can evade traditional security solutions.

Even with all these precautions in place, there's always a chance that your organisation could be targeted by a supply chain attack, which is why it's important to constantly monitor your systems for signs of compromise. Look out for unusual activity or any changes in performance or behaviour that could indicate someone has gained unauthorised access to your systems.

If you suspect that your organisation has been attacked, make sure you act quickly and contact your IT department or security team right away so they can investigate and contain the damage as much as possible.

5. Invest in comprehensive cybersecurity solutions for your organisation

This will provide you with an additional layer of protection against attacks, as well as giving you the ability to quickly detect and respond to any incidents that do occur. As an example, InfoTrust provides IT security solutions to organisations large and small, Australia-wide that use sophisticated tools such as defence in depth and AI & Machine Learning. 

We combine next-generation security technologies with our expert security services (tailored to your organisation's needs) in order to protect your data, your people and your assets from cybercrime.

Contact InfoTrust

Protect your small business against the threat of a supply chain attack in 2022, with InfoTrust’s industry-leading IT security solutions. Get in touch for more information.


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