Compliance is Security
Find out which certification or framework is the right one for your organization
A SOC 2 (System and Organization Controls 2) audit is an audit of the internal controls of a company related to security, availability, processing integrity, confidentiality, and privacy. It is typically performed by an independent auditor to provide assurance to customers and stakeholders that the company has adequate controls in place to protect their data. While any company that processes or stores sensitive information may benefit from a SOC 2 audit, there are some specific types of companies that are more likely to undergo this type of audit. These include:
Technology companies: Companies that provide technology products or services, such as software-as-a-service (SaaS) companies or cloud service providers, often need to undergo a SOC 2 audit to provide assurance to their customers that they have effective controls in place to protect their data.
Healthcare organizations: Healthcare providers, insurers, and other healthcare-related organizations often handle sensitive patient data, and may be required by law to undergo a SOC 2 audit to demonstrate compliance with HIPAA regulations.
Financial institutions: Banks, credit unions, and other financial institutions often undergo SOC 2 audits to demonstrate compliance with regulations related to the protection of financial information, such as the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (GLBA).
Service providers: Companies that provide services to other companies, such as accounting firms or law firms, may undergo a SOC 2 audit to provide assurance to their clients that they have adequate controls in place to protect their data.
ISO 27001 Certification
ISO 27001 is an international standard for information security management. It provides a framework for companies to establish, implement, maintain, and continually improve an information security management system (ISMS). Any company, regardless of size or industry, that handles sensitive information or data, may benefit from ISO 27001 certification. Many customers and partners now expect their service providers to have ISO 27001 certification, and having certification can be a competitive advantage in attracting and retaining customers.
There are some specific types of companies that are more likely to seek ISO 27001 certification. These include:
Technology companies: Companies that provide technology products or services, such as software-as-a-service (SaaS) companies or cloud service providers, often need to undergo ISO 27001 certification to demonstrate their commitment to information security and provide assurance to their customers
Healthcare organizations: Healthcare providers, insurers, and other healthcare-related organizations often handle sensitive patient data and are required by law to implement security measures to protect this data. ISO 27001 certification can help demonstrate compliance with HIPAA regulations.
Financial institutions: Banks, credit unions, and other financial institutions often handle sensitive financial information and are required to comply with regulations related to the protection of this information.
Government organizations: Government agencies, departments, and contractors often handle sensitive information related to national security, defense, or citizen data. ISO 27001 certification can help demonstrate compliance with government security standards such as NIST 800-53 or FISMA.
A PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard) assessment is an evaluation of a company’s compliance with the security standards set by the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council (PCI SSC) for the protection of payment card data. The latest version of the standard is PCI DSS 4.0.
Any company that processes, stores, or transmits payment card data should undergo a PCI DSS assessment. This includes:
Merchants: Merchants that accept payment cards, including both brick-and-mortar and e-commerce businesses, are required to comply with the PCI DSS.
Service providers: Third-party service providers that process payment card data on behalf of merchants, such as payment gateways or payment processors, are also required to comply with the PCI DSS.
Banks and financial institutions: Banks and financial institutions that issue payment cards or process payment transactions are subject to the PCI DSS.
It’s important to note that the level of assessment required for each company can vary depending on the volume of payment card transactions it processes. The PCI DSS requires companies to be assessed at one of four levels, based on the volume of payment card transactions they process each year.
Level 1 assessments are the most rigorous and are required for companies that process over 6 million transactions per year, while level 4 assessments are the least rigorous and are required for companies that process fewer than 20,000 transactions per year.
HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) compliance is required for any company that handles protected health information (PHI), including healthcare providers, health plans, healthcare clearinghouses, and their business associates.
Healthcare providers include doctors, hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, pharmacies, and any other entity that provides medical services.
Health plans include health insurance providers, HMOs, and government programs such as Medicare and Medicaid. Healthcare clearinghouses are entities that process nonstandard health information into standard formats, such as billing information.
Business associates are third-party service providers that perform functions that involve the use or disclosure of PHI on behalf of a covered entity, such as a medical billing company, a cloud service provider, or a legal or accounting firm.
In addition, HIPAA compliance may be required for other companies that handle PHI as part of their business operations, such as employers who offer health benefits to their employees.
HIPAA compliance requires companies to implement a range of administrative, physical, and technical safeguards to protect the privacy and security of PHI. These safeguards include policies and procedures for protecting PHI, workforce training, access controls, data encryption, and regular risk assessments.
It’s important to note that failure to comply with HIPAA can result in significant financial and legal penalties, as well as damage to a company’s reputation. Therefore, any company that handles PHI should ensure that it complies with HIPAA regulations.
Adopting the CIS Controls can help organizations meet compliance requirements for security standards and regulations, such as the NIST Cybersecurity Framework, ISO 27001, and PCI DSS. CIS Controls are designed to be cost-effective, with a focus on leveraging existing resources and minimizing the need for new investments. This can help organizations improve their security without breaking the bank.
CIS (Center for Internet Security) Controls version 18 is a comprehensive set of security best practices that organizations can adopt to improve their security posture. Adopting the CIS 18 Controls can help organizations in several ways, including:
Improved security posture: The CIS Controls provide a comprehensive framework for protecting against cyber threats, and adopting them can help organizations improve their security posture by identifying and addressing security risks.
Prioritized approach: The CIS Controls are organized into a prioritized list, with the most critical security actions listed first. This allows organizations to focus on the most important security tasks first, based on their level of risk and potential impact.
Customizable framework: The CIS Controls can be customized to fit the specific needs of an organization. This allows organizations to tailor their security approach based on their unique requirements and risk profile.
NIST Cybersecurity Framework
The NIST CSF provides a comprehensive approach to managing and reducing cybersecurity risk, covering all aspects of the organization, from people and processes to technology and data. Adopting the NIST Cybersecurity Framework can help organizations improve their cybersecurity posture, reduce risk, and meet regulatory requirements, all while taking a flexible, risk-based, and cost-effective approach to cybersecurity.
Risk-based approach: The NIST CSF is based on a risk management approach, allowing organizations to identify and prioritize the most important risks and take action to reduce them. This can help organizations focus their resources on the areas of highest risk and improve their overall security posture.
Flexibility: The NIST CSF is flexible and can be adapted to meet the specific needs of different organizations, regardless of their size, sector, or type of data they handle. Organizations can use the framework to develop a customized cybersecurity program that is tailored to their unique needs and risk profile
Compliance: The NIST CSF is often used as a baseline for regulatory compliance, such as the cybersecurity requirements in the HIPAA, PCI DSS, and other regulations. Adopting the framework can help organizations meet regulatory requirements and demonstrate their commitment to cybersecurity.
Cost-effective: The NIST CSF is designed to be cost-effective, with a focus on leveraging existing resources and minimizing the need for new investments. This can help organizations improve their cybersecurity posture without breaking the bank.