The Benefits that Actionable Risk Intelligence Provides to Your Extended Enterprise

Posted on: May 24, 2023
Author: Jordan Johnson

Bamboo Forest ViewIs Risk Intelligence Necessary?

Following the compounding crises that have taken place over the last few years, I think we can all agree that a strong third-party risk management (TPRM) program foundation is critical for effective identification of inherent and imposed risks. Having this type of integrated program allows organizations to remain both compliant and afloat during times of crisis.  

However, different threats levels require different degrees of risk remediation. Your ability to identify and respond to each of those different threat levels will determine your likelihood to: 

  1. Simply stay afloat or, more importantly, thrive when risks arise 
  2. Meet evolving regulatory and compliance mandates such as the Digital Operational Resilience Act (DORA) 
  3. Scale your business, or  
  4. Do all of the above  

To that end, a proven third-party risk management strategy that includes extended capabilities can help detect different degrees of criticality. However, the ability to do this requires much more than manual processes/assessments and static surveys – it leans more heavily into real-time risk sensing. This is where the need for actionable risk intelligence comes into play. 

How is Risk Intelligence Beneficial to TPRM?

The truth is that there are many pieces to the puzzle when it comes to driving enterprise resilience and business continuity and experts will tell you that one critical piece is implementing enterprise-wide TPRM efforts, as managing risk is now everyone’s responsibility. This has been proven in what we’ve all witnessed over the past few years, as we’ve seen significant changes in the risk landscape. It has quickly become clear exactly how important it is for the enterprise as a whole to prioritize effective TPRM practices and that simply putting blanket controls into place and leaving them to their own devices just won’t suffice.  

Controls are processes and/or tools that are put in place to remove, mitigate, or reduce an identified risk. There are various ways to identify different types of necessary controls for effectiveness, as mentioned in our blog “Taking it Back to the Basics with Risk Assessments”. Given that your third-party operations are in constant motion which means that new vulnerabilities with varying levels of criticality could arise from day to day, hour to hour, minute to minute, or even second to second risk tracking must be performed in real time. Assigning the right controls, gaining heightened visibility, and having risk intelligence are all essential to staying ahead of threats that may surface and will help provide a better understanding of different threat levels so that mitigation efforts can be prioritized appropriately.  

Advanced TPRM capabilities and interactive toolsets (i.e., holistic views of your third-party ecosystem, real-time continuous monitoring, and scenario testing) bring potential risk into sharp focus. These features not only enable teams across the organization to quickly detect, assess, and proactively respond to critical risk events, but they also empower them to cohesively navigate disruption as an enterprise. This is best done when you’ve aligned your business and its security objectives with the proper tools and strategies needed to operationalize effective third-party risk intelligence activities. Having both the expanded TPRM capabilities and alignment on TPRM priorities can significantly reduce operational risk, allowing you to exceed compliance standards and thrive through future disruption.

Risk Intelligence in Action

Real-time risk sensing and data-driven risk intelligence play a key role in driving a deeper understanding of vulnerabilities and the potential impact that your extended enterprise may have on your own organization’s core products and services. This understanding begins with: 

  1.  A robust data foundation which informs an action-oriented strategy to identify, recognize, and respond to TPRM threats  
  2. Proper analysis of risk data to uncover granular details that are necessary to take informed action and be better positioned to protect your enterprise  

Taking it a step further, when combining the power of real-time data with alerts, this helps organizations become more agile and intentional in their ability to protect the enterprise and its critical products and services, ultimately allowing them to maintain true operational resiliency.  

In short, actionable risk intelligence is a fundamental tool for any organization that wishes to stay ahead of potential disruptions and remain compliant when it comes to mitigating third-party risk. Putting effective practices in place to combat threats and close risk gaps is only one step in the direction that organizations will need to take to anticipate and avoid disruption. Organizations must now realize that expanded TPRM capabilities are no longer a “nice to have” but rather a “must have”. 

Fusion supports the full TPRM lifecycle and also leverages data broker services that seamlessly integrate various security risk ratings into your TPRM program across the most critical risk domains (e.g., business health, financial health, cybersecurity, IT security, etc.). All of these features combined provide organizations with actionable intelligence, expert guidance, and risk insights with an objective to position them to take quick action and also improve their security posture.  

Want to learn more about how Fusion can help strengthen your TPRM program with actionable risk intelligence? Contact your Fusion Account Manager or request a demo today!