Japanese car manufacturer Toyota is the latest big company to be hit by supply chain problems, following one of its suppliers being hit by a cyber attack.

As a result, the company’s plants in Japan have ceased operations for the day, resulting in 13,000 cars being frozen on the manufacturing line.

The delay comes as the company’s supplier of plastic parts and electronic components was hit by a cyber attack. The issue is the latest in a long run of recent incidents of cyber crime. Not only has Toyota been affected by its supplier being hit, but chipmaker Nvidia, US broadband provider Viasat and a host of Ukrainian banks and government offices have also been hit by cyber incidents.

As the amount of cyber crime groups continues to ramp up, now is the time for organisations to act. By ensuring your cyber security policies are in order, you are installing a firm layer of defence against cyber criminals, who are finding new, complex ways to infiltrate businesses.

The alternative? The thousands of cars Toyota will be unable to put together will cost the company plenty of money. This could easily go onto impact your business in an equally costly manner. The cyber security landscape is becoming so dire that the UK’s National Cyber Security Centre has offered some advice for businesses, on where to start with their review:

  • Patch your systems
  • Improve access controls and enable multi-factor authentication
  • Implementing an effective incident response plan
  • Checking that backups and restore mechanisms are working
  • Ensuring that online defences are working as expected
  • Keeping up to date with the latest threat and mitigation information

Paul Chichester, NCSC Director of Operations, added: “The NCSC is committed to raising awareness of evolving cyber threats and presenting actionable steps to mitigate them. While we are unaware of any specific cyber threats to UK organisations in relation to events in Ukraine, we are monitoring the situation closely and it is vital that organisations follow the guidance to ensure they are resilient.

“Over several years, we have observed a pattern of malicious Russian behaviour in cyberspace. Last week’s incidents in Ukraine bear the hallmarks of similar Russian activity we have observed before.”

As we reported last week, in the wake of a Russian cyber attack on Ukraine, the current activity is following similar malicious incidents that have hit Ukraine in the past. Most notably was the NotPetya ransomware attack in 2017. While this attack first victimised those in Ukraine, it very quickly spread to affect businesses all over the world. While the hope is that these current attacks cease, it could very much be the case that Russian cyber criminals are behind the incidents.

Of course, as has been the case for Toyota, it could well be that a customer or supplier of yours is impacted by a cyber attack. This in turn can have an adverse effect on your own operations. Where possible it is imperative to have Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery (BCDR) plans in place. They look to counter-act any kind of disruption, including supply chain problems.

Without a BCDR plan mapped out, some organisations may not know how to respond to a serious cyber incident. Don’t be one of them, ensure you are ready for the worst and avoid becoming the next victim of cyber crime.

For more information and to review your cyber security policies, contact Neuways today on 01283 753 333 or email hello@neuways.com.