Securing Your Supply Chain – How to Protect Your Business Against Third-Party Breaches

How a Single Supplier Risk Can Wipe Out Your Business and Trust

Last year, a small tech services firm had to notify over 10,000 clients that their data had been breached. The culprit wasn’t an external hacker – it was a newly hired HR contractor who abused their access privileges to steal customer PII. The fallout severely damaged the company’s reputation and led to over $400,000 in costs.


Unfortunately, third-party breaches like this are increasingly common. Businesses granted access to vendors, contractors and other external parties often have security gaps that leave networks vulnerable. In fact, over two-thirds of data breaches involve third-party access in some capacity. Along with financial damage, these incidents severely undermine customer trust.


With limited resources, businesses typically struggle to align the security of external partners with internal systems. Onboarding third parties is often rushed, with little vetting. Even once granted access, ongoing monitoring of how external parties are accessing data is nearly impossible without the right solutions. 


This article will overview the growing insider threat for your business related to third-party breaches, and how the right technology can help identify risks and lock down your supply chain security to avoid becoming the next victim

Rising Third-Party Breaches Undermine Business Trust

Third-party risks are no longer just a theoretical threat. The incidents plaguing businesses have reached epidemic proportions:

  • 53% of businesses suffered a breach linked to vendors or external partners in 2022 – up from just 15% in 2020
  • Supply chain attacks increased by 430% in the last year
  • Damages linked to third parties averaged $5.4 million per incident, enough to cripple most SMBs
  • Over half of businesses say loyalty decreased after a partner exposed customers’ data


Whether it’s contractors stealing trade secrets, vendors leaking customer data or suppliers exposing networks to malware, third parties have become a leading digital security threat. Their expanded access privileges make it easy for even one external partner’s oversight to severely damage an entire business.


The far-reaching impacts of these third-party breaches include:

  • Irreparable damage to brand reputation and customer trust that took years to build
  • Major financial losses from remediation costs, legal fees and business disruption
  • Loss of competitive advantage if intellectual property is compromised
  • Class action lawsuits, fines and other regulatory repercussions
  • Diversion of focus away from core business priorities to manage breach fallout


For most businesses, recovering from a third-party breach can be a nightmare scenario. The damage often extends well beyond just immediate costs and can mean the downfall of their business entirely. And with strained resources, SMBs in particular, often struggle to contain breaches and restore customer confidence once they occur effectively.

Why Do Businesses Struggle With Third-Party Risks?

Businesses rely heavily on external vendors and partners, from HR and accounting to web services and legal. This expands their digital ecosystem and attacks the surface. Without the right oversight, a single supplier vulnerability can jeopardize the entire organization.

Yet most businesses generally have far less mature IT security than large corporations.


Challenges include:

  • Limited Security Resources: Businesses have smaller (or no) dedicated security teams. Critical third-party monitoring tasks often get deprioritized.
  • Rushed Onboarding: Understaffing also leads to rushed onboarding of third parties without proper vetting or setting access privileges.
  • Poor Access Controls: Once granted entry, businesses lack ongoing visibility into how third parties are accessing data and systems. Access isn’t segmented or adequately restricted.
  • Lack of Monitoring: Businesses can’t feasibly monitor all third-party activities 24/7 to catch suspicious access or events that may indicate a breach. 
  • Compliance Gaps: They are also less likely to structure agreements or audits to ensure third parties comply with security policies and protocols.


When businesses allow third-party parties permeability without proper oversight, it makes networks highly susceptible to breaches.

Take Control With Comprehensive Third Party Security

The good news is businesses can take back control and lock down their supply chain security using the proper solutions.


Cyberangels integrates seamlessly with existing systems to provide comprehensive third-party risk mitigation. Core capabilities include:


  • Automated Vendor Risk Assessments: Continuous auditing of third-party security measures and compliance. Immediately identify gaps putting your data at risk.
  • Granular Access Controls: Define and restrict what systems and data each vendor can access based on role. Limit privileges. 
  • Active Monitoring: AI-powered monitoring of all third-party activities – what data they access, when and how often. Get alerted to anomalies.
  • Ongoing Authorization: Re-validate third-party access is still required. Automatically revoke permissions once work is completed.
  • Compliance Enforcement: Ensure vendors, and contractors comply with security protocols and policies. Violations generate alerts. 


Cyberangels empowers businesses to align third-party security with their data policies, providing needed visibility and control. Businesses also benefit from robust features like DDoS prevention, malware scanning, intrusion detection and automated remediation to harden environments.

An SMB implementing Cyberangels reduced third-party incidents by 92% within 8 months. They prevented an attempted breach by a vendor. The platform paid for itself in cost savings by avoiding just one incident.

Take The Next Step in Supply Chain Security

Businesses can no longer afford to have their supply chain security outpaced by third-party risks. With tight budgets, the most effective approach is the technology that’s purpose-built to lock down vendor access without draining limited resources.


Sign up now for a free trial of Cyberangels’ all-in-one platform designed for businesses to take control of third-party risks.


Within minutes, you can conduct automated assessments to uncover vulnerabilities and start reining in access. No credit card is required and no impact on your systems.


It’s time to take the guesswork out of third-party security and ensure your customers’ trust isn’t compromised by supply chain blind spots. Strengthen the security fabric across your digital ecosystem today.

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