Have you thought about your security today? Why cyber security also plays a crucial role in logistics

It is the morning of the 17th of July when the head of your IT department notices unusual activity within the network. Shortly afterwards, a message appears on the screens of the office staff and in the warehouse: “Your data has been encrypted. Pay 100 Bitcoin to receive the decryption key.” Panic breaks out as it becomes clear that the entire IT infrastructure of your logistics company has been affected. You decide not to pay and call in IT specialists to restore the systems, but this will take several weeks. Customers are frustrated and threaten to break off business relations, and you are already struggling with financial losses and negative publicity. A scenario that could have been avoided had you invested in cyber security earlier and developed robust contingency plans.

It is not unlikely that you will be affected by such a scenario, even if not always to this extent. A study by IBM estimates that one in five companies in the logistics and transportation industry could fall victim to a cyber attack. This alarming figure suggests that investing in cyber security is essential to protect against devastating effects such as direct financial loss, business interruption and long-term damage to reputation and business relationships.

 

Digitalization as a gateway for cybercriminals

Digitalization and AI are currently revolutionizing the logistics industry. Automated warehouse and transport systems increase efficiency and reduce errors, AI-driven algorithms optimize route planning, real-time data analysis enables more precise inventory management in the warehouse and faster response times to market changes. In addition, networked systems and IoT technologies improve transparency in the supply chain, resulting in better traceability of shipments. This automation throughout the supply chain, whose processes are connected in invisible and complex ways, means a huge exchange of data and plenty of gateways for cybercriminals. In fact, seven out of ten logistics companies state that IT and data security is a challenge for them when it comes to digitalization.

 

Playing with emotions

In 2020, cyber attacks recorded a rapid increase of almost 700 percent. This trend is continuing due to AI and innovative technologies. Cyber criminals primarily use methods that play on human emotions – known as social engineering. More precisely, social engineering refers to interpersonal manipulation with the aim of persuading people to take certain actions, such as disclosing confidential information, purchasing a product or releasing funds. The increasing professionalization of cybercrime is making it much more difficult to distinguish between genuine and fake messages, while threats are spreading faster than ever before via a variety of digital communication channels. Cybercriminals are using phishing, ransomware or BEC (Business Email Compromise) attacks to gain access to sensitive data and information and to encrypt files and systems by penetrating the IT infrastructure. What can protect you from this is, above all, knowledge of these methods and the cybercriminals’ approach.

 

Knowledge is power

What are the weak points of your IT systems? What tools do cybercriminals use to gain access to sensitive data and information? How can you protect your supply chain from attacks on third-party providers? And how do you train your employees? To protect yourself effectively against cybercrime, it is crucial to be aware of the potential dangers and the latest trends among cybercriminals. Because only those who know the tricks can identify attacks and will not fall for them. Continuous training of your employees is therefore essential to protect your company from cyber attacks. What other measures can you take? We will be happy to advise you on your security!