ERP or specifically Enterprise Resource Planning software has evolved prominently in the business field in the recent years. Businesses were always seeking for technical systems or IT software through which they can automate their everyday operations and tedious processes including HR operations, sales, accounting, stock management and so forth. While major advantages of an inclusive all-in-one software are manifold, it prohibits the use of multiple software systems. Besides ensuring that all the functional aspects are compatible with each other, it also enhances the consistency of data. However, with such a type of comprehensive software that encompasses vast areas of operations, it is quite natural to have some pitfalls or vulnerabilities in the system which should be immediately addressed.
Following are the most prevalent security pitfalls in ERP that businesses need to be aware of along with some easy hints for preventing them.
Use of outdated or non-updated software
A big risk that businesses fail to interpret earlier is the use of an outdated software. If their current software is not supported with the upgrades of the latest version, it is useless in rectifying any integration issues or experience frequent crashes. Updates are always released for a reason and mostly for addressing the problems faced by the earlier version. This is why installing the last updates on the existing software is vital.
While sometimes risks in a software implementation are deliberate and malicious, most times they are because of lack of understanding in the team who are behind its implementation. Lack of thorough understanding of the ERP system or what it is expected to do for the organisation can lead to errors in implementation and leaves the organisation’s processes and data to serious security risks. To avoid such risks, make sure the ERP vendor provides proper manual guides or training sessions to users of the system.
Non-compliance with security standards
For an ERP software that stores vital confidential information including customer financial credentials and payment details of the organisation, it is obvious to meet certain security standards. Compliance with PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry’s Data Security Standards) may include too if the system keeps records of credit and debit cards. All in all, the ERP system should be able to store all confidential details in encrypted forms, restrict the access of all to sensitive data and track the access to data.
Lack of Reporting capabilities
Not being able to manage the task of reporting is one of the major security risks associated with ERP. The risks are greater when enterprises use outsourced or free solutions like Google Sheets or Excel for reporting. This is quite risky because all the sensitive data gets out of their secured system. Thus, insufficient capabilities of reporting can result in the loss of data control to some general insecure applications. To avoid this, organisations have to make sure to get some analysis and reporting system integrated into their ERP.
As the modern ERP software have to handle a wide spectrum of areas, vast information and sensitive data, single authentication like the use of passwords are not totally secure. The best and reliable way is 2FA (two-factor authentication) or multi-factor authentication, which confirms the user’s claimed identity considering several factors.
No doubt, an ERP system is built keeping in the mind the major security aspects of an organisation or business. However, these are some of the usual security pitfalls observed post its implementation, which can hamper the business flow. Henceforth, quick anticipation, evaluation and rectification of these above security failures will make an ERP software highly secure and foolproof.