A Team-Centric Security Approach Protects Last-Mile Logistics from Cyber Risks

A Team-Centric Security Approach Protects Last-Mile Logistics from Cyber Risks

Companies that don’t take the time to implement security measures at every step of their supply chain, especially the last-mile, are vulnerable to threats that could put them and their customers at risk.

Companies that gather and store payment data, personal information, and user credentials will continue to attract attention from sophisticated attackers, especially those that can’t protect their data in today’s perimeter-less environment.

Take the Port of Kennewick, Washington, for example, which was hit with ransomware that completely locked access to its servers. The attackers demanded $200,000 in ransom to restore access to the port’s servers and files, and it took nearly one week for port authorities to access their data. That meant loss of port revenue and blockages in the smooth flow of the supply chain.

Prioritizing last-mile logistics security—whether in warehousing, inventory management, or shipping and receiving—begins with creating a comprehensive culture of security from top to bottom.

How to Build a Security-Focused Team

Knowledgeable and experienced leaders must communicate the importance of security and bring on the right personnel to dispel that value throughout their processes and their teams. As risk and cybersecurity processes become more intertwined, these professionals are joining forces to ensure seamless communication and workflow.

For example, positions such as Head of Technology Risk now require candidates with a comprehensive cybersecurity background. Even professionals with an NSA background are moving into Head of Risk positions, which is a new trend that has emerged in the past few years.

Candidates who understand how the technology is made are highly attractive. Technical professionals with this experience can help companies understand how to shore up protections and what solutions to prioritize without unnecessary spending, especially when considering how to secure the data that has left their organizations and is now in the hands of employees and external partners.

Professionals who are seasoned in modifying infrastructure and creating processes that allow for further system development—while having security in mind from the beginning—will be crucial in building this security-focused culture.

The next step to ensure every inch of the supply chain is assessed for cyber-vulnerabilities and that security is addressed is an all-encompassing strategy.

Take a beat and assess every potential touchpoint that is vulnerable to a cybersecurity threat, such as real-time delivery tracking, port vulnerabilities, 3PLs, bring your own device (BYOD) policies and cloud-based apps. This creates a clear map of where a company is most at risk and helps leaders assess and develop a strategy to strengthen the supply chain’s defenses.

The Human Touch

Since 85% of all attacks involve a “human-element,” train and educate employees on cybersecurity, and communicate clear policies and procedures that promote awareness to mitigate risk. When new software or hardware is the solution, leaders must also ensure that their teams are properly trained on any new technologies and have the knowledge and skills to spot potential threats before they strike.

Strengthening last-mile logistics security comes down to creating a holistic security-forward culture through a team that can prioritize and address external and internal risks simultaneously. These factors will boost last-mile logistics security and protect  against cyberattacks that could be detrimental to the bottom line.