Supply chains made vulnerable by lack of IT security

1 February 2006
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01 February 2006 | Rebecca Ellinor

Medium-sized firms are putting their supply chains and those of their partners at risk, according to the Confederation of British Industry (CBI).

It said many firms were vulnerable to electronic and online attack because they had failed to put security measures in place, and today launched online guidance to help SMEs deal with the threat.

According to a recent CBI survey, 60 per cent of medium-sized firms engage with their suppliers, partners or clients online but more than half of firms (52 per cent) have no security measures whatsoever.

It said while small firms are not much better, the supply chains of medium-sized companies are at a higher risk because they are more likely to integrate their systems with large firms as well as trade with smaller ones.

The IT security guide includes advice on how to deal with online attack, viruses and cyber crime in the supply chain. It gives examples of how to address real-life problems including disruption to systems and networks, theft of business information, hacking and "spam" e-mails.

Alun Michael, Department of Trade and Industry minister for industry and the regions, launched Securing Value in the Online World today. It is available free to CBI members. Non-members can find information at www.tso.co.uk/cbi/

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