Proactive Security Risk Management in the Pharmaceutical Industry

Tony PelliTony Pelli

Practice Director
Security and Resilience

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The pharmaceutical sector experienced a monumental transformation over the last two years. The pandemic forced the industry to realize meeting new demands would not only require unprecedented growth in both medication development and distribution, but also in adopting and incorporating innovative technological solutions. Despite these huge leaps forward, pharmaceutical companies will continue to face challenges surrounding counterfeit production concerns, distribution disruptions, increasing market demands, data collection advances, cybersecurity threats, and rapidly fluctuating customer requirements over the next five years.

Fortune Business Insights reports the global pharmacovigilance market is projected to grow from $6.28 billion in 2021 to $14.85 billion in 2028 at a CAGR of 13.1% during the forecasted period. The report also indicates the industry’s main objective is to enhance patient care and safety with respect to the use of medication.

This is a direct reflection of how medication has become more personalized. We are seeing a shift in the industry as distribution is now closer to the customer than in years past. In this type of one-to-one model, pharmaceutical companies will encounter problems with direct shipping methods as they generally have less visibility and control of the entire shipping process. It’s great for customers, but for the distribution channels, this poses its own set of security and diversion issues

More parties tend to be involved in this type of shipping; there's more movements and more touches on the products. This changes the way the industry needs to think about security risk. Rather than trying to secure a few larger movements, pharmaceutical organizations will need to manage multiple levels of smaller movements and work closely with suppliers. It's imperative for these organizations to understand who is doing what and where within their supply chain, and identify what practices are already in place and create a baseline supply chain assessment. From there, companies can begin to identify the internal and external levels of risk.

Register for BSI’s upcoming webinar on the state of the pharmaceutical industry and hear our experts talk about proactive security risk management. Senior Global Security Experts Merck, CSL Behring, and AstraZeneca will explore the importance of supply chain intelligence for high-risk geopolitical environments, how to protect high-value assets, and best practices to ensure the supply chain security of those assets.