Software supply chains have become the hallmark of modern businesses. In fact, 73% of organizations rely on software from third-party vendors to optimize their operations. This reliance on third parties has given rise to some serious risks that companies must manage today in order to protect themselves against future threats. Fortunately, it’s possible to mitigate these risks with a few simple steps:
Make security everyone’s priority.
When you’re building software with a defined life cycle, it’s crucial to include security as an integral part of the process. Security should be everyone’s responsibility and not just an afterthought. Everyone in your organization needs to think about how their role affects the security of your software supply chain.
Begin by establishing clear expectations for all stakeholders: developers, product managers, business analysts, and architects—and make sure there are specific people responsible for reviewing those roles on a regular basis (like once per week). You also want to make sure that these same people are involved in training new recruits from day one so they can help them understand what good practices look like early on in their careers.
Each team should establish its own standards for both internal testing and external audits through third parties such as Veracode or UL Cybersecurity Services. These standards will help ensure that all teams are following best practices when delivering code into production environments where sensitive data resides or is accessed by end-users who depend on it being secure all day long every single day (YODA).
Scan software for vulnerabilities as code is being written, so that ensures quality at every stage of development.
Scanning for vulnerabilities as code is being written ensures quality at every stage of development. It also improves productivity and allows developers to ensure security at every stage of development.
Include security in the software development life cycle (SDLC).
The software development life cycle (SDLC) is a set of steps that should be followed during the development of software. Every project, including security, should have its own SDLC. The process should begin with the identification and prioritization of requirements by all stakeholders in order to understand what needs to be developed and how it will be used. This step allows for the creation of functional specifications that describe what capabilities are needed from your software application or system. From there, you can begin building prototypes which allow you to test assumptions about how those requirements might work together with other processes related to your end goal; this helps identify issues early on before they become major problems further down the line when time becomes scarce or resources aren’t available anymore due to constraints outside of your control (such as budget). Finally, once these designs have been agreed upon we’ll move onto implementation where actual code gets written using one language/framework over another depending on who created them previously.”
Create a set of best practices for supply chain security and then apply them consistently across the board.
Best practices are a set of guidelines that can be applied to a given situation. They often include specific steps with clear instructions, like how long to hold inventory or where to ship products from.
Best practices are typically created by experts and compiled into a set of documents that can be used at any company for guidance on security, shipping and warehousing, warehouse management systems (WMS), and more. You can also create custom best practices based on your unique needs or by reviewing the ones already in existence.
Once you have created the set of best practices for supply chain security, ensure they are followed consistently across the board by:
- Training employees on how to follow them properly so they know what’s expected of them;
- Using automated software tools that make adherence easier;
- Tracking compliance using metrics based on those specified in your custom-made rules; and
- Holding employees accountable when they don’t adhere—for example, by penalizing them financially through docking their paychecks if they fail too many audits or not completing required training sessions within specified time frames
Keep a close eye on third-party vendors.
When it comes to third-party vendors, the best way to ensure that they follow the same security practices you do is by making sure they’re following industry standards. This will help ensure that they’re meeting or exceeding their requirements for protecting data and preventing breaches. You should also monitor these vendors closely so that if there is a breach at one of them, you can take steps quickly. To do this, set up a formal process whereby each vendor has its own compliance officer who reports directly back to your company’s security team.
In addition, create an incident response plan with all of your third-party vendors—and make sure you actually follow through on it when something happens! Your vendor may think this isn’t necessary because “it won’t happen here,” but the truth is that no one knows where or when an incident will occur (or how severe it will be). The only way we’ll ever know if something goes wrong with a vendor is if we have an established process in place for handling these situations.
Ensure that you have thorough oversight of your supply chain from start to finish.
Your software supply chain must be secure. A security breach in your supply chain could lead to a loss of customer trust and an increased risk of fines from regulators. If a breach happens, you’ll need to understand how it happened, who was affected, and what steps you can take to prevent further breaches.
It can feel overwhelming when dealing with so many different vendors and partners. To manage this complexity, try these strategies:
- Keep track of all the people working on your supply chain—and make sure they are using strong passwords that change often
- Monitor who is accessing sensitive data or files by tracking logins and access permission levels on each device connected with sensitive information
With the right tools and strategies in place, you can ensure that your software supply chain is secure. By implementing these strategies and best practices, you’ll be able to reduce your risk of being breached or compromised at every stage of development—and keep