In this business environment, where more output is expected faster, while consuming fewer resources, organizations have little choice but to embrace outsourcing and other means of becoming more efficient while maintaining productivity. Interconnecting business technology systems accelerates inter-enterprise collaboration, but there are clear risks to providing access to external parties.
The post-mortem on a few recent high-profile data breaches indicated the adversaries first entered the victim’s network not through their own systems, but instead through a trusted connection with a third-party vendor. Basically the attacker targeted and then owned a small service provider, and used that connection to gain a foothold within the real target’s environment. The path of least resistance into your environment may no longer be through your front door. It might be through a back door (or window) you left open for a trading partner.
In our Building a Vendor (IT) Risk Management Program paper, we explain why you can no longer ignore the risk presented by third-party vendors and other business partners, including managing an expanded attack surface and new regulations demanding effective management of vendor risk. We then offer ideas for how to build a structured and systematic program to assess vendor (IT) risk and take action when necessary.
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