Enhanced supply chain security and optimization through cloud computing

December 20, 2022
Author: Chris Munoz
Blog | Security

The need for supply chain security

Managing supply chains has never been more complicated. There are numerous threats to fragile supply chains. Cyber attacks and malware are growing in number and complexity, seemingly daily. Supply chains are an attractive target because they offer a backdoor into dozens or hundreds of companies’ systems that are a part of the chain. To combat the eventuality of these events and bolster supply chain security, Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) furnishes backups of mission-critical data.

Beyond the external threats are the internal ones: aging infrastructure, poorly optimized data, lack of flexibility and scaling, and no backup plan. These variables limit business agility, and modern supply chain demands that companies must be able to pivot on a dime with little notice. Cloud technology has risen to meet the challenges of maintaining fluid supply chains. AI and machine learning tools grant insights into existing data streams while best-in-class security systems actively monitor and seek out evolving malware threats. This blog will examine how cloud computing provides supply chain security and optimization solutions.

Supply chain optimization

Optimizing a supply chain entails getting the most out of your data flows and securing said data through backups and security measures. Cloud-native predictive AI tools can help you analyze trends and stay ahead of supply chain disruptions. IoT devices and monitoring tech such as RFID tags track products during each step of the journey from manufacturing to purchasing to fulfillment. The Cloud allows for greater visibility and security across the supply chain.

Cloud systems also offer more opportunities for automation and simplification of supply chain management. APIs can simplify integrations across platforms and are valuable tools for creating complex automation workflows. Automatic backups are one of the core advantages of utilizing the Cloud.

Advanced security is another advantage of using the Cloud in supply chains. Public clouds, such as Google Drive and Microsoft OneDrive, have some of the best minds in security working around the clock to stay ahead of cyber criminals. However, many supply chains implement a multi-cloud environment. Smaller cloud providers may not have as robust security as industry leaders and may leave backdoors open to hackers. Multiply this by the number of companies and systems linked via a supply chain, and the potential for vulnerabilities explodes.

Data must be secured in all locations — onsite, in the Cloud, on third-party systems, and via a separate DRaaS solution.

Supply chain security fundamentals

Creating a secure supply chain is a two-fold strategy that involves identifying vulnerabilities and creating an automated backup system with disaster recovery as a critical component.

Vulnerabilities includes:

  • Deploying AI-driven security tools to seek out and destroy ransomware before it becomes a threat.
  • Creating an inventory of potential system security weak points.
  • Incorporating password best practices company-wide.

Creating a robust data protection program involves:

  • Automating backups to the Cloud.
  • Enacting cloud security best practices, which include solutions such as Zero Trust Networks.
  • Utilizing an encrypted unified data storage solution such as a data lake.
  • Using a DRaaS solution to allow for a speedy recovery from a cyber attack or natural disaster.
Learn more: How do you ensure the security of your supply chain?

Scaling and flexibility

Maintaining national or global supply chains comes with a great degree of uncertainty. Responding to shortages, overstock, or even crises is vital to modern supply chains so corporations must scale and pivot as needed.

A cloud environment is an ideal resource for scaling in near real time. You pay for storage or services as needed. With the mass adoption of serverless computing and microservices, you can drill down and develop the exact tools you need when you need them and deploy them across platforms. Additionally, AI keeps you agile by flagging potential issues. Your data works harder by providing invaluable business intelligence that translates into informed strategic decisions.

Data protection and recovery

DRaaS experts are vital to your supply chain because malware is always evolving and may eventually be able to target cloud backups.

How malware works now

While familiar tactics like phishing or spear phishing are still around, dangerous new ploys threaten supply chain security. For example, malware can now be implanted directly in documents and images. Another approach is to lock the disk drive itself rather than individual files. One particularly insidious assault uses malware with a timer that may remain dormant for months or even years. Hackers know to target older systems that may have more vulnerabilities.

Protection through DRaaS

Increasingly, companies must contend with climate change-fueled disasters that may damage business locations and devastate vital systems. Properly setting up DRaaS is a safeguard against both malware and catastrophic events. A DRaaS system should be a secondary, offsite cloud backup system and even though cloud vulnerabilities exist, a DRaaS can be made inaccessible to hackers and bad actors through expert setup.

Maintaining supply chain security now and into the future

Managing and securing supply chains remains one of the most significant business challenges. CBTS can help you optimize and secure your supply chain. Our experts craft custom solutions to address security, backups, and supply chain data insights through cloud-based solutions.

With decades of experience under our belts, CBTS helps our clients make sense of supply chain management. We partner with industry-leading technology providers, and our thousands of certified engineers and project managers make navigating evolving technology a breeze.

Get in touch today to learn how to optimize and secure your supply chains with cloud technology.

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