Vendors Increase Breach Risk
Organizations have eagerly embraced growing and diverse populations of partners, vendors, and other contingent labor as well as non-human technologies like service accounts, bots, and smart devices to boost competitiveness. While these efforts are intended to fortify competitive strategies, many organizations are just now realizing the extent to which by utilizing these third parties, they are creating new operational challenges and expanding their attack surface, dramatically increasing cyber risk exposure.
The strategic opportunity: Enterprises - indeed all organizations of all sizes - have the unprecedented opportunity to innovate, grow faster, improve profitability, and ultimately create greater customer value by utilizing a variety of resources outside of their traditional employee base. Oftentimes, these resources are available on demand, have unique or underrepresented skillsets, and do not require the same long-term monetary investment as full-time employees.
The drawback: Most organizations have no way to centrally track and manage their relationships with this burgeoning number of third-party users, or “non-employees” and the access to organizational assets (facilities, systems, and data) they require. Many organizations have unsuccessfully attempted to solve the problem by customizing their existing HR or IAM systems, and others have tried to build their own proprietary systems. While these systems may address some of the operational challenges, none mitigate the risk these non-employees create as outsiders with insider access.
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