Manufacturers are bombarded daily by news of SCADA hacking, IP theft, and other threats to intellectual property security. Manufacturers tend to have complex supply chains, integral relationships with overseas partners and aging factory equipment not designed for cloud security — all of which pose difficult (and expensive) security challenges. With all of these complex considerations to work through, it’s easy to see why some companies might put off manufacturing data security initiatives, and just hope for the best.
But manufacturing security isn’t all or nothing. Most manufacturers can substantially reduce their risks with some basic changes.
How to Improve Manufacturing Data Security
1. Install Email Encryption
Manufacturing supply chains can involve hundreds of people exchanging proprietary data in a complex web of connections. If any of that data makes it into the wrong hands, there could be serious consequences. Losing control over valuable prototype designs and CAD files has obvious ramifications, but even something as seemingly harmless as a parts invoice getting out could give competitors valuable intelligence and damage your market edge.
Email encryption is the best business data protection solution for your whole supply chain. Virtru email encryption secures emails with a click, and allows you to send messages to anyone in your supply chain, without the need to create new logins or learn a new interface. And because Virtru sits on top of your existing email account, your team can protect manufacturing data security without switching accounts every time they have a sensitive message.
First, start small. Teaching your team how to encrypt an email takes only a few minutes. You can use our encryption videos below to get Virtru installed and teach your team encryption in just a few minutes.
2. Use Virtru Advanced Features to Mitigate Manufacturing Data Security Risk
Virtru goes beyond email encryption to protect IP and mitigate manufacturing data security risks. Our PDF watermark gives recipients access to files while preventing them from downloading it locally, or leaking it. This makes it a useful manufacturing data security tool for sharing information while reducing the risk of exposure — such as when negotiating with potential offshoring partners.
Users can rescind messages (even after they’ve been read), set time limits on sensitive communications, or disable forwarding to prevent a recipient from accidentally sharing a confidential design. Tracking and controlling forwarded messages is one of the most powerful features. Watch this demo below to see how easy it is to track where your secure messages have been forwarded, as well as how easy it is to granularly revoke access or disable forwarding altogether, right from your Virtru Dashboard.
3. Automate Manufacturing Data Security With Virtru DLP
Once your team is set up, you’ll want to start rolling out data loss prevention rules for high-priority departments, such as R&D or design. You can make the rules simple, and refine them as you go. For example, if you’re primarily concerned with CAD files being intercepted en route, you can improve manufacturing data security with a rule like, “all attachments must be encrypted.”
To see how easy it is for an administrator to set up DLP rules for an organization using Virtru for Google, please watch this demo below. Using Virtru for Microsoft? Get a tour of how to set up DLP rules here.
Virtru DLP helps prevent breaches, train users in manufacturing data security rules, and alert management to security issues. Virtru DLP uses customizable rules to perform a range of functions, including:
- Encrypting emails
- Stripping attachments
- Warning users that an email breaches data protection rules
- Forwarding messages
- Adding customizable text
Virtru DLP rules are especially useful for their ability to warn users before they break a manufacturing data security rule. This allows your team to learn from their mistakes, while preventing those mistakes from risking your security.
Manufacturing Data Security Should Grow With Your Company
You’ll always have security risks, just like you’ll always have market-based risks. But just as a volatile market doesn’t stop you from refining your products or production methods, a challenging security environment shouldn’t stop you from improving cyber security. Use these videos to learn more about manufacturing data security:
Basic Virtru Features & Training