Why Manufacturers Should Prioritize Cyber Security When Choosing a SaaS Provider

Posted by Maziar Adl
Maziar Adl
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Illustration: data securityManufacturing companies benefit from technological advances across their organizations. Technology simplifies tasks and task management from the factory floor to the design and development stages to company-wide correspondence. The prevalence of technology makes security one of their top concerns, and for good reason. Large manufacturing companies are a target for their intellectual property, sensitive customer and employee data, and money. Cyber threats are a real concern, from phishing scams that can target any employee, ransomware or data breaches resulting from vulnerable networks to supply chain disruptions. 

A cybersecurity strategy and privacy protection plan is vital for organizations of all sizes. Companies need to protect their proprietary information, keep their systems running smoothly, and protect the data of their employees, partners, and customers. They can accomplish this internal IT solutions as the first step of defense. The second layer is to use Software-as-a-Service, better known as SaaS, from providers that prioritize cyber security. 


The Advantage of Using Software-as-a-Service

Illustration: single source of truthCompanies that use cloud-based SaaS know the operational benefits of these services. They provide powerful solutions for customer relations management, payroll, product roadmap management, engineering ticket management, finances, and administrative activities, such as team meetings, email, and file-sharing. Your company likely uses many cloud-based SaaS products in daily work, such as Slack, Salesforce, Hubspot, Zoom, and Dropbox. 

The way SaaS works is that the provider hosts the application and makes it available to end users over the Internet. Using the cloud means that team members can access and share the same tools no matter where they work, as long as they have an internet connection. 

Another benefit is that the SaaS provider can provide real-time software updates to their customers and eliminate the need for a physical product. Whenever you see a prompt to update your software, that’s usually in response to a usability feature or an improvement to cyber-security. It’s also why you should always accept the update rather than deferring to later. Some SaaS companies program the updates to happen automatically so you’re always protected.  


Better Cyber Security than Your Internal Strategies

Illustration: cloud security teamIt’s one matter to subscribe to a service for your personal use and ensure your computer cyber security software is up-to-date. It’s a whole other matter to keep an entire organization secure. Think of the number of employees a large manufacturer, such as Ford, GE, or Samsung, has. 

Now, imagine how many electronic devices are in play per person. That’s a lot of potential devices to protect and people to educate on cyber security best practices. These large companies will have policies, IT teams, and network protections. It also means when they shop around for a SaaS provider, they seek companies who prioritize security to align with their company goals. 

Because SaaS providers focus on delivering a seamless experience for remote teams and large-scale organizations and want to keep their customers satisfied, they will invest in cybersecurity measures that often outperform internal solutions. They can hyper-focus on security details for a specific application or suite of applications in ways that large companies cannot do as easily or efficiently.


Do Your Due-Diligence

Illustration: Researching and investigateOne way to check that the SaaS companies you’re working with are taking cyber-security seriously is to check their certifications. Do they clearly state on their website or marketing materials that they focus on cyber-security? Do they display the logos and symbols of their certifications? If you don’t see that information, you can ask directly. Knowing in advance whether or not a company has the safeguards to protect your sensitive proprietary information can help you decide who to work with. 


The International Organization for Standardization (ISO)

Many countries and regions have independent standards for cyber-security and certifications to match; however, the core of the standards will be the same from country to country. The International Organization for Standardization, or ISO, also has a set of standards that are internationally recognized. ISO 27001 is recognized as one of the highest standards for information security management systems (ISMS). Companies often seek this standard, especially if they operate internationally, as it overlaps with most other certificates, has high standards and applies across borders. 

The certification process involves a thorough third-party audit of the business to ensure the product (the SaaS) and every aspect of operations meet the requirements for secure information management. The certification also requires annual maintenance audits to keep the certification and a complete re-application every three years. With the rapidly changing nature of technology, this frequency is essential to ensure the company is maintaining their best practices. 


Other Ways to Boost Cyber Security

Illustration: cyber securityEnsuring your partners have top-notch cyber security features is one way to protect your organization and half the equation. The other half is your internal cyber security measures. There are other actions your company can take to keep your organization protected and your data secure. 


Train Your Teams in Cyber Security

One of the most common ways to gain access to sensitive information is due to human error and human ignorance. The more your team knows how to recognize a phishing scam in their emails or the importance of strong login credentials, the more your organization will be protected. 


Keep Your Remote Teams Secure

Cloud-based software is the glue that holds your teams together and makes collaboration feasible. It can also be a vulnerable point in your business. Using secure VPNs for company business, having a device policy, and routine cyber security awareness training can help protect your remote teams, no matter where they’re located. Selecting SaaS companies that prioritize cyber-security can also give you a layer of protection above and beyond your internal measures. 


Invest in Your IT Team

Manufacturers have similar sensitive data to protect, no matter what your product portfolio contains. You need to keep your financial information, intellectual property, employee data, and sensitive information entrusted to you by third parties safe. Large manufacturers can outsource their cybersecurity to firms that specialize in IT and cyber security or invest in their internal teams. Whichever solution you choose, keeping cyber security at the core of your business is another tactic to set you apart from the competition. 


SaaS for Product Roadmap Management

Your product ideas and portfolio data are sensitive to your business data. That’s why at Gocious, we take cyber-security seriously. Our product roadmap management software has features to keep your information private and secure. We have ISO 27001 certification and update our application annually, so you know your data is in safe hands when you use Gocious. 


Book your free demo with our team to see first-hand how Gocious can support your product management teams. 

Topics: Product Management, Security

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