While logistics issues, sourcing problems and civil unrest can seriously threaten supply chains, they are not the only risks companies face in their quest to mitigate problems and deter costly mistakes. One of the biggest problems many firms face is data security, but most may not even realize how it impacts their supply chains.
Compromised systems can lead to serious issues
Now more than ever, businesses rely heavily on data kept on company computers or cloud storage systems. A corporation may have valuable information about its strategic sourcing initiatives, finances, product secrets, suppliers and logistical tactics and operational plans accessible via the web, and this poses a threat to their data security, which has the potential to compromise their supply chains.
Hacking is more common than ever, with even the United States government taking note and trying to implement the practices necessary to protect itself from attacks. Whether it's a competitor, criminal organization or rogue government, it seems no corporation can prevent an attack. This could cause a company to not only lose access to its critical information necessary to continue running operations, but also allow another group to access sensitive information, putting a firm's finances or corporate secrets at risk.
Even if an organization takes the steps necessary to shield its own data, it isn't completely protected unless its contractors and suppliers are taking the same steps. Smaller systems also offer hacking options to attackers, and if a partners' systems are compromised, all of its information - including data on partners, contracts and potentially sensitive information - could be accessed. By asking partners to protect their systems and ensure the necessary security measures are in place, a corporation can eliminate some of the risk associated with hacking and better protect confidential information.