Mitigating Third-Party Cyber Risks Improves Business And Customer Experience

organizations aren’t just sitting ducks; many have taken action to improve their third-party cyber risk management strategies. Sixty percent of respondents said their organizations are currently making improvements to these strategies today. Yet to fully negate the four factors of problematic strategies, these improvements must be thoughtful and actionable

Key Recommendations

Mature your third-party management program for reputational resilience.

Your third parties are an extension of your brand. When they fail, so do you. Your reputation depends on knowing and managing your third parties and building trust with your customers includes understanding your third-party risk. Review and assess — honestly and critically — whether your current practices for evaluating third-party risk properly serve your decision-making processes. Leveraging all available data (and automation practices to get the most from that data) ensures that your entire supply chain will meet your cyber requirements.

Require third parties to earn the right to do business with you.

A robust and detailed assessment of the third-party’s cyber maturity is the first step — but not the last — in a strict onboarding process. Continual monitoring using threat intelligence and a remediation mindset is needed to protect the business and the customer. Be stringent and set a baseline for what you will and will not accept and enforce it in real time.

Training means everything: Create and nurture strong communication across all business units.

Communication among all parties is a critical piece of third-party cyber risk management. Your protection is only as strong as your weakest link. Break down existing siloed processes to ensure business stakeholders and IT/ risk management decision-makers are in tune with each other. These units operate independently and often make decisions without consulting each other, but a robust security strategy requires consistency and collaboration among these teams. Take this one step further and make security training for all employees and stakeholders mandatory. Constant communication regarding cyber posture and third-parties’ compliance, and ongoing education for all involved is key to preventing threats.


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