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Reasons You Need a SOC 2 Readiness Assessment

Securing your organization's network infrastructure requires keeping one step ahead. Otherwise, remediating network security issues can be very expensive.

CGC_SOC 2 Readiness Assessment

Beyond the severe mistake of losing sensitive customer data, there’s a sizable price tag associated with today’s breaches. The larger your organization, the more records are at risk and the higher the financial cost of recovering from a cyberattack.

According to IBM’s 2022 data breach report, 83% of companies have experienced a data breach.

A 2018 joint IBM-Ponemon data breach study pointed out that data breaches cost companies an average $3.8 million in losses, up 6.4 percent compared to 2017. In 2022, the average cost of a data breach in the US nearly tripled to $9.44 million. The Equifax breach became the gold standard case study in security circles years ago, with the loss of over 143 million consumer records and a loss of $4 billion in stock market value, it’s a prime example of a sensitive and costly error when it comes to network security.

SOC 2 Readiness Assessment

Although it may seem daunting, it’s critical for any organization storing, processing, or managing confidential customer data to reassess its security posture via a SOC 2 readiness assessment. This will determine where gaps and other weak points exist within your network that could cause you to fail a compliance audit.

Before proceeding, you’ll need to determine which AICPA Trust Service Principles and Criteria your SOC 2 audit will need to cover. A typical SOC 2 report will provide IT stakeholders with information about the controls at your organization that could possibly affect user entity security, availability, processing, integrity, confidentiality, and/or privacy.

In conducting a robust SOC 2 readiness assessment, you’ll need to have a solid understanding of what gaps and potential risks are at play regarding your current policies and procedures. Before meeting trust services criteria, you’ll need to know how specific risk factors affect internal controls, such as:

  • The nature of your organization’s operations
  • Your system’s operating environment
  • The type of data your organization generates, uses, or stores
  • What commitments you’ve made to customers and/or third-party vendors
  • Your responsibilities for operating your systems and processes
  • The nature of the technology and delivery channels your organization uses

Still, even with a comprehensive understanding of where security gaps exist within your internal controls, you will likely need guidance on how to mitigate and prevent a breach event from causing significant damage, or even from ever happening at all.

Preventative Security Action Plan

A thorough SOC 2 readiness assessment will describe the readiness of the controls in place by reviewing which ones would pass and which would fail. Having that knowledge prior to an audit could direct key stakeholders to implement preventative security measures immediately, rather than after a breach has occurred. In addition, the guidance received from the assessment should provide you with an action plan to remediate any gaps found.

Another point to consider when initiating a SOC 2 readiness assessment is time. Be sure to give your organization plenty of time to respond to identified issues so they can be resolved in an efficient and accurate manner. A SOC 2 audit can be expensive to undertake, so make sure you’re prepared beforehand.

Once all recommendations have been made in the assessment, it’s important to act on them in a timely manner. Issues regarding training program implementation, established processes, and weak points are best undertaken as soon as possible.

This will give your organization time to revisit your SOC 2 readiness assessment and ensure that you’ve done everything possible to successfully pass a SOC 2 audit.

Please reach out today for CyberGuard Compliance to assist you with your SOC 2 Readiness Assessment.