Security Breach ©123RF, vectorfusionart

Cybersecurity Breaches Stand to Disrupt Supply Chain Operations in 2022

“Organizations have to be right 100% of the time… the bad guys only once!”

Last year proved challenging, as cyber-attacks wreaked havoc on supply chains. This year, you should expect cyber-attacks to continue and possibly increase.

The latest victims of ransomware attacks are key oil terminals in western Europe. On January 30, 2022, cybercriminals attacked Belgium, Germany, and the Netherlands. Investigations are underway. Investigators have yet to provide any details about disruptions, costs, etc.

Many sources – industry and academia—see cyber-attacks as a rising and costly threat. Businesses and supply chains are vulnerable. Given this projection, it makes sense to do all you can to protect your supply chain from cyber threats.
Not only are cyber-attacks expected to increase, they are also expected to be more pernicious. They can damage your operations, your sales, revenues, and profits. They can damage your brand. Shareholders question their investments with your company. And shareholders and customers will leave in droves for your competitors.

It’s no longer a question of if, but when, a cyber-attack will occur.

How prepared are you? Can you avoid a cyber threat? Can you thwart a malicious attack? Can you recover from an attack? If so, how quickly can you recover and how much can you minimize the damage and disruption?

Last year saw multiple cyber-attacks disrupt supply chain operations. Companies attacked included Colonial Pipeline, Brenntag, Acer, JBS Foods, Kaseya, CAN Financial, Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.

In looking at the list of companies, cyber criminals attacked critical industries. Cyber-attacks hit energy, chemical, financial, software, hardware, and electronics companies. Financial costs were huge that extended beyond ransoms demanded and paid.

For example, Brenntag, a German chemical company, paid a ransom of $4.4 million. Also, cyber criminals demanded $50 million from Acer, the Taiwanese computer hardware company. Whether Acer paid the ransom remains uncertain… you can draw your own conclusions. Another victim succumbed to demands by cyber criminals and paid a $11 million ransom.

The financial costs are real, and they are substantial. In 2020, the average cost of a security breach was $3.86 million. Costs to your brand, your shareholder, and your customers are also substantial. Security officials expect annual cybercrime costs to cost $10.5 trillion by 2025. It’s clear the trend rising—going in the wrong direction.

Remote Work—a Weak Link

As companies shifted to remote work, cyber-attacks increased by 20%. They increased as the exposure increased with the expansion of remote work. Vulnerabilities increased with the manifold connections to the company cloud. The impact to operations of a malware attack is 50 days of downtime, says Accenture.

That proved to be a gold mine for hackers. According to Accenture, data breaches increased by 11% since 2018 and a staggering 67% since 2014. Also, the average cost of a data breach due to remote workers is $137,000, as reported by IBM.

More workers are returning to their offices, as Covid winds down. But many workers will continue to work remotely. The data show humans are responsible for 95% of security breaches. That means your cyber security plans must take this new vulnerability into account.

Given the increase in cyber threats, you must pay as much attention to cybersecurity as you do to operations. Cyber-attacks have become a Perma-trend. Cyber-attacks are not only here to stay, they are also increasing in scale, scope, and cost. Disruption and damage to your supply chain can be ruinous if your business is not prepared.

One last data point suggests cybercrime has a chilling effect on supply chains. It shows that 42% of businesses believe cybercrime hinders robust innovation. That does not bode well for businesses or their supply chains.

Working with a 3PL You Can Trust

As cyber threats increase, the landscape is becoming more precarious and uncertain. Readiness to operate in the New Normal is crucial. Your brand and your profitability depend on it. Even your company’s survivability depends on it.

Since remote work and employees represent the largest vulnerability to your security, working with a reliable 3PL becomes a critical criterion. By selecting a reliable 3PL to partner with, you can reduce your exposure to cyber threats.

At American Global Logistics, we take daily operations on behalf of our customers seriously. That means we take cyber security seriously.

Don’t get caught unprepared. Contact American Global Logistics to learn about our approach to supply chain management. We take pride in keeping your cargo moving day-in and day-out