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  • 20 February 2024
  • 4 min read

How can organisations secure their supply chain from cyber threats?

What does supply chain cyber security look like? How can you begin to formulate a third party security framework? And what best practices should you be aware of.
FAQ Series How can organisations secure their supply chain from cyber threats

Cybercriminals are increasingly targeting supply chains to gain access to sensitive data, disrupt operations, and steal intellectual property – especially if the parent or larger organisation is proving tough to crack.

It is, therefore, imperative for organisations to prioritise supply chain cyber security and raise awareness among employees at all levels.

Supply Chain Cyber Security and Awareness in a Nutshell

Securing the supply chain involves safeguarding every link in the chain, from initial suppliers to end customers. This process encompasses identifying:

  • Potential vulnerabilities
  • Implementing robust security measures
  • And fostering a culture of cyber awareness among all stakeholders.

3 Principles to Follow When Formulating a Supply Chain Security Plan

  1. Develop Defences with Breach Assumption: It is crucial to operate under the assumption that breaches are inevitable. Focus on not only preventing breaches but also mitigating attackers' abilities to exploit accessed information and recovering swiftly.
  2. Cyber Security is a People, Processes, and Knowledge Problem: Recognise that cyber security extends beyond technology—it encompasses people, processes, and knowledge. Human error is often the weakest link in cyber defence, highlighting the need for comprehensive training and awareness programs across the supply chain.
  3. Integration of Physical and Cyber Security: There should be seamless integration between physical and cyber security measures. Addressing vulnerabilities in both domains is essential, as attackers may exploit weaknesses in one area to breach the other.

7 Best Cyber Security Practices for Supply Chain Security

  • Include Security Requirements in Contracts: Ensure that security requirements are clearly defined in all vendor and supply chain contracts.
  • Pre-Assessment of Supplier Vulnerabilities: Before engaging with a supplier, conduct thorough assessments to identify potential vulnerabilities and security gaps. For example, TSC’s Security Awareness and Behaviour Research tool (SABR) uses a massive set of survey questions to assess employee behaviours and actions, to pinpoint gaps and vulnerabilities, before finally providing advice and materials to plug these gaps.
  • Implement "One Strike and You're Out" Policies: Enforce strict policies regarding counterfeit or non-compliant vendor products. Any deviation from specifications should result in termination of the vendor relationship. Your cyber security is far too important to entertain lax behaviours.
  • Tight Control Over Component Purchases: Exercise tight control over component purchases, inspecting and approving them before acceptance into the supply chain. This allows you to be aware of zero-day vulnerabilities and exploits and close security gaps on every potential attack surface entering the supply chain.
  • Obtain Source Code for Purchased Software: Obtain access to the source code for all purchased software to facilitate better oversight and security.
  • Enforce Tight Access Controls for Vendors: Implement stringent access controls for vendors to limit their access to sensitive systems and data.
  • Continuous Monitoring and Incident Response Planning: Continuously monitor the supply chain for anomalies and be prepared with a clear incident response plan that is easily accessible to all stakeholders.


Securing the supply chain from cyber threats requires a proactive and multi-faceted approach. By adhering to the principles of breach assumption, recognising the human element in cyber security, and integrating physical and cyber security measures, organisations can bolster their defences against evolving threats.

Implementing best practices such as stringent contract requirements, pre-assessment of supplier vulnerabilities, and continuous monitoring are crucial steps in mitigating supply chain risks.

Working with the right partner

Partnering with a trusted cyber security training and awareness company, such as The Security Company Ltd. (TSC), is crucial. With 25 years of experience, TSC specialises in enhancing security behaviours, fostering a robust security culture, and raising awareness of threats and risks across global organisations.

The dynamic nature of cyber threats necessitates a comprehensive and adaptive cyber security strategy for UK law firms. By understanding the evolving threat landscape and investing in robust training and awareness initiatives, decision-makers can fortify their organisations against potential risks and cyberattacks.

At The Security Company, we specialise in boosting cyber awareness, targeted training, customised projects and role-based solutions. Through our tailored subscription services, targeted and customised eLearning and awareness materials and our behavioural assessments, we're committed to helping organisations like yours instil long-term, security-conscious behaviours.

Our method is distinct. We begin by diving deep into your team's current mindset, pinpointing lax behaviours, security gaps and departments in need of focus and attention. From there, we craft tailored solutions that encourage better cyber practices from your employees. With comprehensive training and seamless integration into your current systems, we're here to fortify your team against modern cyber threats and be your trusted cyber security and awareness partner.

Ready to take the next step?

We can help you to formulate an effective and comprehensive cyber security training and awareness program for your organisation year-round and be your dedicated partner for employee behaviour change and, ultimately, security culture change.

Do not hesitate to contact us for further information.

Written by
Nas Ali
Cyber security and awareness content creator focused on emerging threats and the next wave of cyber security risks like AI, deepfakes and tech 4.0 initiatives in order to build towards a more secure organisational culture.
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