Vendor risk management is now a very important concept that needs meticulous planning. It is a necessity and also a policy that many companies are following for greater efficiency and profit.
There are many Third party vendors or direct company vendors are present in many industries including software, hardware etc. Today it is an integral part of business to manage information and knowledge, as it is the most important asset of an organization. Information security, legal documentation, trademarks, patents, copyright are some traditional and newly evolved concepts. Starting from design to concept today all can be patented or protected by legal documentation.
Today companies assess the brand value, customer information, internal customer satisfaction report, past and present client information before handing over non public information to vendors, like credit card details, bank information, even address phone numbers in mailing and calling lists, (PCI DSS Requirement 12.8 similarly requires covered entities to maintain a list of service providers with whom card holder data is shared.) To back up the institution’s vendor risk assessments in conversations with regulators and auditors, it is also helpful to keep handy files containing due diligence and audit reports on the vendors or summaries of such reports.
Vendor risk management is the process organizations analyze not only from the point of view of past experience but also in case to case basis that can be particular to the partnership. This is particularly important for companies that relates to data sharing and the outsourcing of business functions and processing. Vendor risk management is a standard practice today and has matured to an extent where some leading financial industry groups such as BITS have standardized the process significantly through their Standard Information Gathering (SIG) and Agreed upon Procedures (AUP) standards. The use of these standards or their derivatives helps organizations quantify the risk that may be involved with their vendors and then incorporate appropriate risk lessening techniques and measures to alleviate the risk.
Vendor risk management process helps organizations to operate in a mutually secured environment that encircles security of organizations information, customer data and also third party vendor’s operational security. It does not eliminate but certainly minimize security concerns involved in third party production of good and services, processing of information and handling data and process. This also enables the third party vendors to draw border line for their employees on basis of certain legal or agreed points within which they have to deliver and work. So it is mutually benefiting the principle organization and the vendor creating a secured platform of operation where both can deliver excellent product or service to their customers or interest groups.