supply chain attacks

What are Supply Chain Attacks, and Why Should You Care?


In 2013, cybercriminals gained access to retain chain Target's computer networks and stole personal and financial information from nearly 110 million customers. The interesting thing about this cyberattack? Hackers didn't penetrate Target's systems directly but infiltrated third-party software used by the company at the time. This event is one of the earliest examples of a supply chain attack. It involves bad actors targeting the third-party software used by thousands of different companies simultaneously. Supply chain attacks are on the rise and prove a real risk to your business, too. 


In this guide, learn the answer to the question, "What are supply chain attacks?" and discover how to protect your organization's software packages. 


Packagecloud scans for threats in software packages using the latest technology, preventing supply chain poisoning, trojan horse attacks, and other cybersecurity threats. The platform ensures no packages are vulnerable to attackers, helping you secure your software supply chain. Sign up for your free Packagecloud trial


Read more: What is a Software Repo?


What Are Supply Chain Attacks?

A supply chain attack (or supply chain poisoning) is a cyberattack that can impact thousands of organizations. Typically, a bad actor will hack third-party software you use in your organization, change the source code, and insert malicious code into the build. Because multiple organizations use the same software packages, a supply chain attack can trigger a series of events that puts every user at risk. These attacks spread from one computer system to another and can be difficult to control once executed. 


The Target attack isn't the biggest supply chain poisoning event to ever happen. That title goes to the 2020 SolarWinds attack, which impacted hundreds of thousands of public and private organizations, including the U.S. government. 


Packagecloud keeps all of your software packages inside a central location, enabling you to pull those packages from a controlled environment instead of relying on a public repo. That way, you can improve the security of packages and prevent supply chain poisoning and trojan horse attacks. Start your Packagecloud trial now!


Read more: How to Secure Your Software Supply Chain


What Damage Can Supply Chain Attacks Cause?

A supply chain attack can cause the following damage to your organization:

  • Reputational loss: The media often reports large-scale supply chain attacks, which could potentially damage your business' reputation.
  • Loss of customers: A supply chain attack might stop customers from doing business with you or purchasing your products or services.  
  • Loss of business opportunities: Partners and investors might not want to do business with you after a supply chain attack, especially one that exposes financial and sensitive information. 
  • Financial harm: Hackers can steal sensitive financial information from your business, which could cause thousands of dollars in losses. 
  • Further cyberattacks: Once hackers have accessed your systems through a supply chain attack, these criminals can do further damage. A DDoS attack, for example, is not uncommon after supply chain poisoning. 


How Can Packagecloud Help With Supply Chain Attacks?

Third-party software vendors can prevent supply chain attacks by using the latest security protocols such as endpoint detection and access controls and only allowing authorized persons to change software builds. However, vendors don't always take supply chain poisoning seriously. Packagecloud solves this problem by storing packages in a central location instead of public repos and scanning for attacks with the latest technology. By keeping your packages secure, Packagecloud can reduce the likelihood of supply chain attacks and safeguard your most sensitive data.


Read more: What is a Software Supply Chain Attack?


Final Word 

Supply chain attacks remain one of the biggest cybersecurity threats right now. When bad actors infiltrate third-party software, their actions kick-start a chain of events that can potentially impact thousands of organizations, including yours. That's why you should invest in a reliable tool that scans packages and keeps them in a central location.  


Packagecloud keeps your software supply chain secure. It checks packages against the latest security risks, helping you identify the most recent threats. Sign up for your free trial with Packagecloud here.

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