Cybersecurity Raising Concerns for Global Supply Chains

Struggling through the aftershocks of the pandemic, the global supply chain is now likely to go under more stress in order to deal with cyber criminals vultures that are descending on the vulnerabilities of the value chain to create severe disruptions.
cybersecurity concerns global supply chains

According to a report from a cyber intelligence firm, all key sectors of the global supply chain are now being targeted by cybercriminals. The report stated, “We’ve witnessed ransomware attacks on the shipping industry throughout the year, which has undoubtedly put a constraint on companies that are already stretched thin due to the pandemic.”

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Over the past few months, cybercriminals have made attempts to sell network access credentials of several shipping and logistics companies on the cybercrime underground market. The targeted organizations included transportation companies in the US, UK, and Singapore.

This report from Intel 471 also added that the criminals ranged from newcomers to prolific network access brokers who were looking to obtain network credentials through widely known vulnerabilities in remote access solutions including Remote Desktop Protocol, Citrix and SonicWall.

That said, the US trucking company Marten Transport was reported to have been hit in a cyberattack in October this year which resulted in significantly disrupting the company’s operations and data theft. Before that, the Port of Houston was targeted in a cyberattack in the month of August. Following the pattern and series of reports filed by supply chain companies across the world, it was found that since early 2020, ransomware attacks on shipping and logistics firms have skyrocketed.

Also Read: How Important is Procurement Analytics?

BlueVoyant, a cybersecurity services company, in a statement said, “Some 93% of global organizations have suffered a direct breach due to weaknesses in their supply chains since last year. The average number of breaches experienced in the past 12 months grew from 2.7 in 2020 to 3.7 in 2021. That represents a 37% increase year-on-year.”

Did you know the number of companies coming forward to admit they have no way of knowing if a breach has occurred in their supply chain rose from 31% to 38%?

Even the White House expressed its concern about ransomware attacks on critical infrastructure, with President Joe Biden issuing an executive order to improve the nation’s cybersecurity and protect federal government networks. The US intelligence officials have blamed hackers based in Russia for several attacks on US companies.

In addition to the Colonial Pipeline attack, there were also thousands of Microsoft Exchange Server zero-day attacks, SolarWinds data breach, Kaseya ransomware attack as well as supply disruption at meatpacker JBS. Following these attacks, the Russian government denied any involvement in the attacks. President Biden also met with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Geneva and discussed on how to act against hacking groups.

The global supply chain however, continues to show extreme vulnerability in part to greater digitization of operations.

Recommended Read: Supply Chain Crisis Risks Taking the Global Economy Down With It

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