Vendor Risk Assessment

Vendor Risk Assessment

The analysts at InfoSystems, as well as our partners at Vivo Security, work with you to determine the security posture of your vendors and create a risk mitigation plan. As a result, both you and your vendor strengthen your security hygiene and avoid potential incidents.

Vendor Risk Assessment

Your organization’s cybersecurity is only as strong as its weakest link. It is critical to remember that third-party vendors, despite operating in separate environments, offer an in-road for cybercriminals looking to breach your organization’s networks, computer systems and data. Therefore, it is in your best interest to monitor vendor security as if it were your own.

Vendors play a significant role in helping organizations achieve their business goals. But too often their security protocols are glossed over or completely overlooked. The cybersecurity risks facing organizations today require digital partners to maintain rigorous monitoring and maintenance.

To start, comprehensively review your existing vendors and assign each with a security rating based on your organization’s standards. Next, determine how well the vendor can respond to security risks. Take that into account and define a vendor’s performance metrics.

Preliminary Vendor Assessments

A common approach to gauging a vendor’s security rating is by providing a questionnaire. Questionnaires can be compiled internally or through your security partner and completed by representatives from each vendor. Typically, these questions align with your security requirements and provide context to assist the vendor’s understanding of security importance.

Your organization may be able to determine the vendor’s general security stance by assessing their answers. If vendors cannot provide adequate answers, organizations should request a meeting to discuss the steps necessary to meet requirements.

The primary goal of the questionnaire should be to answer the following questions:

  1. What security measures does the vendor currently have in place?
  2. Is the vendor aware of existing vulnerabilities and have they taken steps to patch them?
  3. Does the vendor have an incident response plan, and if so, what steps do they take to mitigate a security breach?
  4. Is the vendor aware of your organization’s compliance requirements, and if so, how close are they to meeting them?
 
Predictive Analytics for Vendor Risk Quantification

While the security questionnaire approach mentioned above reflects basic best practices for assessing your vendor security risk, more can be done. Security threats evolve and shift as companies rely on additional vendors. More than 15% of all breaches occur through third parties, and as companies grow and expand their roster of partners, the chances of suffering a data breach increases. As a result, it’s important to forecast threats before they become attacks. One way to do this is through predictive analytics.

Our partner, Vivo Security, quantifies vendor risk through objective risk analytics based on empirical data. This approach provides insights into root causes and vulnerabilities and tests for even the most stringent industry requirements. The practice of using predictive analytics is unique to vendor assessments as it goes beyond benchmark questionnaires and foundational best practices that many vendor assessment services offer.

InfoSystems and Vivo Security can help you mitigate as much as 50% of cyber-risk simply by having the proper vendor assessment practices in place. Vendor and third-party risk assessments are performed twice per year. These reports include detailed company analysis, aggregated risk, and peer or vendor comparisons. We turn these reports around quickly – in as little as two (2) business days – so you are able to take steps immediately. Vivo Security’s analytics are able to determine what a company can expect to lose when a breach strikes. Advanced modeling and software tools highlight a company’s risk profile.

Your organization knows the importance of maintaining a cybersecurity program that keeps your clients’ data safe. Due to the consistent modernization of systems and software and ever-increasing security threats, it can be daunting to stay aware of and maintain control across your environments. The analysts at InfoSystems, as well as our partners at Vivo Security, work with you to determine the security posture of your vendors and create a risk mitigation plan. As a result, both you and your vendor strengthen your security hygiene and avoid potential incidents.

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