Companies in the manufacturing sector are facing a new challenge: cybersecurity risks.
Understanding the emerging risks and how to tackle them is vital for manufacturing companies to sustain their competitive edge.
Rise of cyber-attacks in the manufacturing sector
The COVID-19 pandemic greatly impacted working conditions in every industry; many businesses implemented remote working conditions.
The downside of this is employees have become more susceptible to cyber-attacks – in particular, those working in the manufacturing industry.
In 2020, the industry moved up on this list from 8th to 2nd – a rise of 300% globally – as more and more businesses shifted to remote working conditions.
However, more and more cyber-attackers will continue to target businesses that fail to implement strong cybersecurity systems.
Cyber threats against manufacturing businesses
The manufacturing industry has clearly been the focus of cyber-attacks in recent years. Companies should assess their cybersecurity strategies as well as their vulnerabilities so as to be better prepared for any potential future attacks.
Supply chain attacks
Many manufacturing companies rely on third-party vendors, who may not have their own cybersecurity measures in place. This is because manufacturing companies generally have a wide range of various suppliers, so there is a high chance for an attacker to penetrate through one of them and compromise an entire supply chain.
Malicious actors can potentially exploit any gaps in the supply chain to sabotage the company’s operations and steal data.
Phishing emails are being sent out every day to companies around the world. Surprisingly, many of these phishing emails are successful in getting sensitive information – like employee logins and passwords – from manufacturing companies.
The most common way for a malicious party to steal this private data is by sending out emails that are disguised as originating from a company higher up that they have access to. This type of phishing email is called “whaling”. It works on the premise that employees might open an email, believing it to be legitimate, if it has an address belonging to someone they know and trust.
Ransomware – malware that encrypts data on a computer or network and demands payment before unlocking it – has become increasingly popular among cybercriminals in recent years. These cyber-attacks do not just attack one company at a time, but often target multiple industries simultaneously.
It’s an especially dangerous threat for manufacturing companies because it can cripple production lines, costing them millions of dollars in lost production time.
It can also impact vital infrastructure, such as transportation and power distribution systems, leading to economic disruption at a global level.
In the manufacturing industry, there are risks that come from not protecting their copyrighted material. They can’t afford to have their intellectual property stolen and used to create knockoffs of their products.
All manufacturing businesses need to protect all their designs and data, keeping it safe from hackers and other competitors.
Businesses should also invest in the best security system possible. Cybersecurity systems should be constantly updated with the latest security features, so the businesses remains one step ahead of the next malicious move.
Manufacturing companies store a lot of personal data about their employees, customers, and suppliers. They also have sensitive information about their infrastructure and company security. This information is highly valuable to hackers because it can be used for industrial espionage, identity theft, data manipulation, and more.
With all this sensitive data spread across multiple remote networks and devices, manufacturing businesses are at risk of data breaches. Many types of information are stored on many different platforms – from laptops to smartphones – making it difficult for CEOs, managers, and IT teams to protect all the data from being stolen by threat actors, or having it accidentally leaked by negligent or ignorant employees.
Protect your business from cyber threats
All manufacturing companies must have a detailed plan for how it will protect its data from cyber threats. This plan should be reviewed on a regular basis, so the company can stay up-to-date on new risks and vulnerabilities that may emerge in the industry or in their own environment.
Strategies to protect your sensitive data:
Get expert help from the security specialists
Cyber threats are a significant concern for all businesses, but they’re especially dangerous for manufacturers. Your data is more sensitive, and the potential consequences of a successful cyber-attack are much greater.
The cybersecurity experts at Technology Solutions are specialists when it comes to protecting and managing the cyber security needs of manufacturing corporations and businesses across the Southwest. Talk to their team today and enhance your business’ security for a well-protected future.