Are You Up to Date on Cybersecurity for Your Manufacturing Company?

by Mary Varano

Cyberattacks are an increasing threat for manufacturers because of the advanced level of technology that governs many processes and activities. Manufacturing companies are especially vulnerable in three key areas:

1. Your Supply Chain

Your business partners, suppliers and other members of your supply chain may pose a very real threat to your systems. Each day, they send your company emails, promotions and invoices. You may even share software programs that are critical to your manufacturing processes. Because the sender appears familiar, your employees may quickly and automatically respond to emails, pay electronic invoices or click on a link without following some simple due diligence steps. Cybercriminals trick employees by making small changes to email addresses or automated templates, and then using these false communications to insert malware into a company’s IT systems. By developing and adhering to cybersecurity protocols, and providing employees with ongoing IT security training, you can instill a culture of vigilance against cyberthreats for email and internet use.

2. Your Software and Hardware

Updating hardware and software is one of the best ways to protect your company against potential cybercrimes. Because cybercriminals are continuously trying to break down barriers, IT companies are continuously updating software to patch holes in security. If you fail to update software and fall behind, or if you have not upgraded the hardware that holds your sensitive client and company information, you could be putting your company at risk. To remedy the situation, begin by checking for the latest versions of your hardware and software with system manufacturers to see if potential updates are available. It may require a small cash outlay to catch up, but this small investment will prevent larger, more expensive cybersecurity problems from occurring.

3. Unexpected Points of Entry

Cyberattacks can occur through “smart” appliances such as refrigerators, coffee makers and HVAC systems. These smart appliances and building systems are part of your company’s network and thus provide access points for malware to gain entry into your IT systems. Any common technology that is connected to your wireless internet poses potential security threats that give hackers the ability to see and control everything taking place on that particular network. By updating hardware and software with appropriate firewalls and cybersecurity features and exploring the potential risks with smart appliance manufacturers, you’ll be able to protect your company against this type of threat.

It’s important to stay alert to the changing nature of cyberthreats to keep your company’s sensitive customer and business data secure. Cyberattacks can happen to companies of all shapes and sizes, not just the Teslas of the world. The best defense is to remain vigilant and adaptable to protect your company’s sensitive information.

Corrigan Krause Specializes in Manufacturing Companies

The Manufacturing Services team at Corrigan Krause can help support your manufacturing company as you improve your processes to prevent cyberattacks. Email to learn how to become a client.