The rise of supply chain cyberattacks

The rise of supply chain cyberattacks has increased over several years.

The way these cyberattacks work is through cyber criminals attacking the vulnerabilities within your supply chain network. Hackers are growing in ingenuity and the ways they are infiltrating networks, gaining unauthorised access, data theft, operational disruptions, and planting malware.

As digital communications are constantly evolving, with connections in the supply chain relying on third-party vendors to operate, they have unwittingly become an attractive target for criminals.

We’re working with organisations to continuously improve their cybersecurity methods and collaborating with partners to mitigate the risks.

Let’s look at why supply chain cyberattacks are rising:

There are several considerations for the rise of cyberattacks, a significant factor being the complexity and interconnectivity within supply chains, creating increased opportunities for criminals to exploit vulnerabilities.

Many organisations rely on global supply chains, involving multiple third-party retailers and suppliers, with each posing a potential weak link in the chain.

What’s more prevalent is the consideration of rapid deployment of many digital technologies, as more and more organisations look to their digital transformation it has expanded the attack surface for criminals to infiltrate. Essentially, providing more entry points.

It doesn’t need today’s blog to preach how cyber criminals are increasing in sophistication with their techniques, including supply chain manipulation, social engineering, and phishing attacks to compromise systems, with the desire to disrupt, compromise and steal information.

What can supply chains do to minimise the risk of cyberattack?

There are many ways that our supply chain customers can minimise their risk, however for the purpose of today’s blog we’ll look at just a few, starting with:

Cyber Essential and Cyber Essentials Plus:

Cyber Essentials certifications are one way (or two ways) that can minimise your organisations risk of cyberattack. The schemes were developed by the NCSC to help organisations to mitigate the risk of Cyber Attack, by focusing on five essential technical controls:

  • Firewalls
  • Secure Configurations
  • Access Controls
  • Malware protection
  • Security Updates

If organisations implement these technical controls they can strengthen their cybersecurity posture, thus reducing any exploitable vulnerabilities.

Cyber Essentials Plus, goes one step further, with rigorous testing and verification of these security controls- providing both your organisation and others within the wider supply chain a higher level of assurance that you take your security responsibilities seriously.

Both certifications promote good cybersecurity practices and support in awareness raising of common threats, encouraging organisations to adopt best practice and being proactive in the protection of their systems and data against cyberattacks.


DMARC, which is the acronym for Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting and Conformance supports organisations in the battle against business email compromise- safeguarding both the email senders and recipients from spam- including domain spoofing. Did you know that hackers can get hold of and use your corporate email to send communications anywhere in the world, feigning to be you? Even more scary is that this can be done without even hacking into your systems.

So, how can DMARC help? By turning DMARC (it’s free to do) on it can make you significantly safer than what you are without turning it on, but probably more importantly, the probability of a hacker targeting your customers by pretending to be you is massively reduced.

DMARC provides you with a report at the end of each day showing who is pretending to be you- both legitimately and illegitimately, thus reducing the probability of domain spoofing and criminal contacting others in the supply chain claiming to be you.

Dark web scanner:

A high level cybersecurity solution that takes a proactive approach towards hacking. It provides you with the intelligence of an incoming attack. Referred to at Data Installation & Supplies (DIS) as pre-emptive security. It allows us to provide you with a full rationale, with information that actually helps you.

Phishing campaigns:

Phishing campaigns are a way for criminals to trick individuals into divulging sensitive information. Typically they involve the sending of fraudulent emails, texts, or websites, impersonating legitimate organisations. The nature of these messages includes urgent, or enticing requests. Password updates, account detail updates, clicking on malicious links, or downloading attachments.

They are designed to steal credentials, data, or business sensitive information, enabling unauthorised access into your systems, or deploying malware- amongst other things.

Unfortunately, as much as you may think your team wouldn’t be fooled by a phishing email, you would be wrong, which is why we offer Phishing campaigns which allow you to devise phishing emails that could enable your employees to unwittingly divulge information/ react. Which if it was a real attack, would leave your organisation vulnerable. We can tailor campaign emails to be company wide, or department wide and you will access a full database of how each person reacts. This then allows you to conduct further training with employees if necessary to better protect your organisation.

The information received through the solution is much more than creating awareness alone, which in itself doesn’t help in either your protection or defence.

Instead what you receive is an alert of the incoming attack, coalesced with the reasons and method, before advising what action to take, find out more here.

Hopefully today’s post gives you a small insight into the rise of supply chain cyberattacks, with several solutions that could support and better protect your organisation. However the details included aren’t exhaustive and if you would like to understand further please contact Data Installation & Supplies (DIS) on 01274 869 099, or fill out our online contact form here and our team of experienced engineers will be happy to help.