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Steering clear of threats: cybersecurity in transport and distribution industry

25/07/2023 minute read OneAdvanced PR

The transport and distribution industry are increasingly reliant on technology for the movement of goods and vehicles across vast geographies. With the ever-increasing use of internet-connected devices and cloud computing, companies in this industry have become more vulnerable to malicious actors. Additionally, the goods that are being transported often contain sensitive data, such as customer information or financial records.

It is therefore crucial that organisations take proactive measures to safeguard their data and systems. In this blog, we'll discuss the top five cyber threats faced by the transport and distribution industry and how they can be overcome.

Key threats in the transport and distribution industry

Phishing scams

Phishing scams are one of the most significant cyber threats facing the transport and distribution industry. Cyber criminals use deceptive email techniques to get employees to download malware or give out confidential information. Phishing scams can be highly successful at stealing confidential information, as they are often difficult to detect. Cyber criminals use a variety of techniques to make their phishing emails look legitimate, such as mimicking the design of a company's emails or using spoofed email addresses and domains. Furthermore, they may send targeted emails to specific individuals within the organisation.

The most effective way to overcome this threat is to educate employees about phishing scams and how to recognise them. Companies can also implement multi-factor authentication and spam filters to minimise the risk of a phishing attack.

Malware attacks

Malware attacks are a common threat in the transport and distribution industry, as they allow cyber criminals to gain access to confidential information or sensitive data. Cyber criminals may distribute malware through malicious emails or by exploiting vulnerabilities in software and hardware.

The best way to prevent malware attacks is to ensure that all computers and mobile devices are running the latest version of antivirus software. Companies should also regularly patch their systems and use firewalls to protect against malicious actors. Furthermore, companies should create strong password policies, as weak passwords can be easily guessed by attackers.

Ransomware attacks

Ransomware attacks are a major threat to the transport and distribution industry, as they can cause significant financial losses and disruption of operations. These attacks occur when cyber criminals use malicious software to gain access to an organisation's computer systems and encrypt its data. The attackers then demand a ransom in exchange for decrypting the data.

Ransomware attacks can be prevented by employing proactive security measures such as patching all systems regularly, using strong authentication methods, and backing up data regularly. Furthermore, companies should educate their employees on how to identify malicious emails that may contain ransomware.

The Internet of Things (IoT)

The IoT has presented many opportunities for organisations to work smarter and increase connectivity, however it has also increased the attack surface. With IoT devices scattered across the supply chain, companies need to be vigilant against hackers using these devices to gain access to their systems. One way attackers can gain access to IoT devices is through unsecured Wi-Fi networks. If an attacker can intercept the data being sent over the network, they may be able to bypass authentication measures and gain access to the organisation's systems. Furthermore, if IoT devices are not properly configured and updated with the latest security patches, they can be vulnerable to cyber attacks.

To address these challenges effectively, businesses should consider implementing multi-layered security protocols that encompass not only access controls and authentication measures but also advanced encryption techniques. Regularly updating and patching IoT devices is crucial, as it helps to eliminate known vulnerabilities. Additionally, continuous monitoring of IoT networks and devices is essential to promptly detect and respond to any suspicious activities or potential security breaches, ensuring the overall integrity and safety of these interconnected systems.

Insider threats

Lastly, insider threats present a significant risk to the transport and distribution industry. These threats can come from disgruntled employees or malicious actors who gain access to an organisation's systems by exploiting weaknesses in their security measures. A robust cybersecurity policy covering access restrictions, regular monitoring, and employee training can go a long way towards reducing the risks of insider threats.

Additionally, companies should conduct regular security reviews and enforce strict policies around the handling of data and information. Companies should also invest in implementing a secure network architecture that allows them to identify suspicious activities on their networks quickly, thus helping prevent cyber attacks before damage is done.

Third-Party risk

The transport and distribution industry is full of third-party vendors and supply chain partners. Each of these vendors holds some data that could be exploited in a cyber-attack. It is essential to vet and monitor these third-party vendors rigorously. Companies should also put in place strong contracts and cybersecurity policies to manage third-party risks.

In addition, as the reliance on third-party partnerships continues to grow, businesses must implement a comprehensive risk assessment process to identify potential vulnerabilities. Regular security audits and risk evaluations should be conducted to ensure that third-party vendors are upholding the necessary cybersecurity standards. It's vital to maintain open lines of communication with these partners to foster a collaborative approach to security. Moreover, having a clear incident response plan in place, which includes third-party risk scenarios, can be instrumental in mitigating potential threats and minimising the impact of a cybersecurity breach involving these partners.

Lastly, businesses should consider ongoing cybersecurity training for their employees who interact with third-party vendors to enhance their understanding of potential risks and reinforce best practices in handling sensitive information. This proactive approach can play a pivotal role in protecting the transport and distribution industry from third-party-related cyber threats.

How MSPs can help

Managed Service Providers (MSPs) can help organisations overcome cyber-security threats in several ways. Role of MSPs in cybersecurity is crucial to mitigate risk and protect businesses. MSPs can provide companies with 24/7 monitoring and response to cyber threats, reducing the risk of significant damage from a cyber-attack. MSPs can also offer cybersecurity training for employees, helping staff identify and mitigate risks. Furthermore, MSPs have access to the latest cybersecurity tools and technologies to safeguard against cybercriminals and often have a range of existing partnerships with industry-leaders in cyber-security.

Not sure where to start? Get in touch today to learn how we can help protect your business.