Back in July 2018, the US DHS (Department of Homeland Security) issued an alert warning to raise a sign of alarm with regard to securing ERP CRM systems before it gets too late for the companies to act. Attacks on ERP CRM systems have been quite frequent these days and can easily make the organization end up losing millions of dollars as well as significant number of customers. As it is a well-known fact that ERP implementation is a tough nut to crack, likewise ERP CRM Security is a topic that should not be taken lightly. There are several failed cases of ERP Security and CRM Security, which lead to shareholders’ lawsuits and financial meltdowns.
Thus, the importance of understanding these security factors is inevitable in order to lead a successful ERP security and CRM security implementation. And to help you with the same we have crafted this article for discussing about the ERP CRM securities to be concerned about before selecting the best ERP CRM software.
ERP and CRM systems are undoubtedly some of the important company assets. Not only the said systems handle the day-to-day company tasks, but these also store a humongous amount of data including both external and internal resources. Most important kinds of company data may include customer data, contract data, production plans, financial data, or even trade secrets, losing which means losing millions of dollars and customer trust at the same time. No company will even entertain the prospect of the same, and this is exactly why ERP CRM security is being over-emphasized as days go by.
Now to answer what ERP security is, it can be stated that it is the practice of involving effective security measures aimed at guarding the entire Enterprise Resource Planning systems against illegitimate and unauthorized access to maintain the integrity of the ERP systems. The same goes with CRM security as well. Securing a CRM system revolves more around securing confidential and crucial customer data. With impending security threats, ERP and CRM businesses have started to invest in robust measures to protect their systems against cyber bullies and their exorbitant ransom.
Considering the digital transformation, the most valuable resource in the current world scenario is no longer crude oil or petroleum, but Data. Information! Not at all exaggerated but a real fact! Hackers tend to target the more vulnerable and easier sources which are the smaller businesses since they rarely have strong and sufficient cybersecurity, whereas global enterprises with sturdy and well-built cybersecurity protections ironically tend to attract fewer cyberattacks. The worst part, small businesses often end up with data breaches, coping with financial disintegration, and are overwhelmed by the lost business.
Unfortunately, all the critical data and business information in one place are prone to risks of external threats, just like having all of your eggs in one basket. This implies that you are more vulnerable as an organization. Thus, ERP security and CRM security are indispensable countermeasures to ensure the safety of the exposed and sensitive data of your organization.
To keep your ERP CRM systems secure and confidential information unscathed, ERP CRM Security covers different areas such as:
It refers to the measure of providing protection and security to the critical systems and assets that includes both hardware and software such as end-user devices, data center resources, cloud systems and networking systems against cyberattacks, disruptions, malpractices or security threats. It aims to develop high-level tactical security plans in order to protect the entirety of the organization’s technological perimeter. Top concerns include resilience, boost security measures, downtime, customer attrition, brand and reputation abrasion, and compliance costs.
The policies and practices adopted by the organization to prevent, detect and control unauthorized access, mishandling, or modification of a computer network and network-approachable resources. The main focus is to safeguard access to files and related directories in a computer network against misuse, cyber threats, hacking, and intrusions. Measures that can be espoused to ensure Network Security Protection:
A security practice of ensuring operating system safety from threats and attacks, enabling different applications and programs to perform required responsibilities and avoid unauthorized interference. There are various approaches in adherence to the following:
It comprises of various tools, measures, processes and methodologies that establish security inside a database environment to guard it against malicious cyberattacks, illegitimate use, and data breaches. Some of the known database security cyber threats are:
ERP has evolved significantly over the years and being a fully comprehensive system that covers such a broad spectrum, naturally, there are going to be a few chinks in the armor and vulnerabilities that are to be looked after. Below are some of the common ERP security and CRM security facts which you should check before selecting the best ERP: -
1. Updates Behind Schedule: ERP systems support many of the organization’s core business processes and operations and if it lags behind, it will hinder your business efficiency and decision-making capabilities. And if you are using an outdated ERP and the updates are behind schedule, then it will not only impede your business growth and hold you back from staying competitive, but you will also find yourself on the verge of security risks such as vulnerability to hacking, vandalism, or viruses.
Reports say that a whopping 87% of businesses use archaic software, including ERP CRM software which are not up to date. Updates happen for a reason, occasionally to introduce new features but most importantly to address Achilles' heel. The world of cybercrime is hyperactive, and hackers are constantly discovering ways to attack software.
Thus, your prime focus should be on timely ERP updates including all the ERP CRM security patches and ask for more questions to your vendor regarding the automatic updater which will apply software updates when available.
2. Full Access Rights: Undoubtedly, the external sources possess the greatest business security threats, but does that imply that we should become reluctant and sit back and neglect in-house risks? Full Access rights should not be provided by default, because it is very necessary to keep an eye on who has access to what data. It is worth noting which employees have permission to make alterations to the system. Let us understand it with an example- In most cases, a software developer’s job is to develop software, design, build and maintain computer programs, they would not require a sneak peek into an employee’s salary information. Access Rights largely depend on the needs and requirements of the business but generally, it should depend on a “need-to-know” basis. There are 3 main types of access control systems namely:
3. Inadequate Training: User training is often deemed as an "Underdog" in an ERP CRM implementation process. In some cases, risks may be malevolent and on purpose but most of the time, it is likely to occur due to the lack of proper understanding and knowledge and inadequate user training. Most of the attention is allotted to implement the system precisely, but enterprise undermines the ERP CRM training to employees and lays a very little emphasis on the same. If done correctly, it can ensure immeasurable success to the company. Ultimately, it’s the employees of the company who are the end-users and they must learn how to operate the system, for which they should be given proper and systematic training to use ERP CRM to its full potential. The errors caused by them due to the lack of understanding may be categorized as “innocent mistakes”, but you cannot leave your business exposed to security threats. You must ask your ERP provider whether system training is included as standard and well-equipped staff to train new hires and make sure certain business protocols are readily available and accessible to the employees.
4. No Automatic Trust: Migration from On-Premises to Cloud ERP systems is gaining humongous popularity. Although there are many advantages attached to it such as freeing IT department for more profit-oriented tasks, and they can save you more money. But a slight downside to it is that you have to place your entire ERP security and CRM security in the hands of a third-party provider. Thus, you are required to consider cloud provider very prudently and without being afraid of asking questions, asking around , and reading reviews. You must pay utmost attention to their security processes and data compliance rules and regulations.
5. Two-factor Authentication: Password cracking is one of the most easiest and common forms of hacking, so it doesn’t actually add up to protect the sensitive and confidential business data just with a simple password (one-way authentication) which can be interpreted by hacking experts with no trouble. Therefore, two-way authentication stands out as clear solution.
Two-factor authentication is a mighty security tool to safeguard data and users from the increasingly sophisticated cyberattacks. It lets you not rely on passwords alone but it provides a two-way authentication process that helps in adding another layer of security to your business. The cybercriminals find it quite difficult to steal user’s identities and access their device and systems. It also helps the organization to keep attackers at bay even if a user’s password is stolen or hacked.
6. Identifying Configuration Vulnerabilities: One of the prime influences in many data breaches is configuration vulnerabilities. Almost all cloud providers offers a wide variety of controls for your business environment. Now you have to spare time to assess these controls and identify which one will provide significant security benefits. Guidelines such as the CIS (Center for Internet Security) benchmark can render great help when it comes to learning about industry best practices for securing IT systems, software and networks. Hunting down vulnerabilities and identifying what measures should be in place to effectively curtail risks is essential for securing the underlying cloud infrastructure. Like this, you can keep a check on the ERP security means and CRM security means before selecting the best ERP and CRM system.
In an organization, the top management is aimed towards what’s best for the business. Everyone should learn together and respect each other’s viewpoint. ERP security and CRM security should not be considered burdens instead, paint them a picture to show what good can occur if the measures for the same are carried out in a better way, how you can actually make your business even more secure and provide your employees and clients with better and enhanced experience.
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