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Why Third-Party Risk Should Be an Executive Issue

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While it’s easy to relegate vendor security management and third-party risk as “security team” issues, the last few years in the InfoSec space have made it extremely clear that this is no longer possible. Cybersecurity breaches, hacks, and threats are now front-page news and can destabilize organizations.

Executives across departments are taking a vested interest in the security protocols, regulations, and operations of a business because they need to stay informed.

Understanding Security as a Corporate Value

From finance to marketing, every department leverages cloud-based vendor relationships to do business, whether it’s a CRM, creative application, or an operation tool like Slack or Hangouts. There will always be an inherent risk within an organization with so many different vendor relationships—especially if internal employees don’t understand the value of corporate security. By elevating vendor risk to an executive focus and making it a corporate value, InfoSec teams and corporations can:

  • Ensure that internal employees don’t open the door to malicious threats or hacks on data.
  • Establish a strong brand reputation in the market as a security practice leader.
  • Show prospective customers and partners that security is more than just a buzzword. It’s a proactive practice within an organization.
  • Set up a scalable, long-term security infrastructure with the full support of an executive team and board.

The strength and sophistication of security threats will continue to grow over the next few years as the technology becomes stronger and more innovative. By putting vendor risk management at the forefront of corporate strategy and making third-party security an executive issue, organizations can ensure they’re prepared for whatever threats come their way.

Three Reasons Third-Party Risk Needs Executive Focus

Vendor security has the potential to become a full-scale corporate issue, which means it needs executive focus well before things get out of control. Here are three ways organizations can benefit from executive involvement in third-party risk:

  1. Better alignment between corporate growth and technical limitations: if your company and product offerings are growing at a rapid pace, security restrictions shouldn’t hold your team back. Having executive-level transparency into security operations ensures teams can grow without risking compliance.
  2. Staying on top of security advancements and regulations: there are new security guidelines, assessments, and workflows released every day. If your team brings a new vendor on board without having the most recent security protocols in place, you could lose out on a revenue-generating opportunity.
  3. Building a corporation focused on risk management: the safety and security of your organization’s data – and your customer’s data – should be the number one priority of your entire organization, not just your InfoSec team. Focusing on third-party risk as a part of your corporate culture ensures that everyone is on board from the CEO down.

Full-Scale Vendor Security

Understanding why executives need more insight and visibility into the third-party risk management process is one thing, but putting these plans into action can take resources and planning. WithWhistic, organizations can have end-to-end transparency into all facets of vendor risk management, from the executive to developer level. CEOs, CISOs, and board members can keep tabs on high-level information, while InfoSec teams and managers can delve into individual assessments, issues, and details.

Third-party risk can impact an entire organization from the top-down, so now is the time to ensure your business is prepared. Learn more about Whistic and how to get executive buy-in for InfoSec operations.

Third-Party Risk Management