What is an IT Security Compliance Audit?

With all the security threats these days in the news from hackers and cyber criminals, it is no wonder why so many companies have to participate in IT security compliance audits.

A compliance audit may vary depending on the company performing it or your industry however it is a comprehensive review of an organization’s adherence to guidelines. Many times, it is performed by a third party Independent accounting, security or IT consulting firm that will evaluate your network compliance. Auditors will review your IT infrastructure in multiple areas including your security policies, user access controls, risk management procedures and disaster recovery.

As stated what is examined in a security compliance audit will vary depending upon multiple factors including whether an organization is a public or private company, what kind of data it handles and if it transmits or stores sensitive financial data.

For example, healthcare providers that store or transmit e-health records, like personal health information, are subject to many regulatory requirements as well as carrier requirements.  Insurance carriers carry out extremely robust IT security compliance audits on its third party providers in order to ensure all data is safe. During the compliance audit, the organization must be able to demonstrate compliance throughout their organization. Failure to pass an IT security compliance audit can result in immediate suspension as a third party service provider.

Compliance auditors will generally ask multiple levels of your team for information including the CIOs, CTOs, IT administrators or their managed IT services provider (MSP) for a series of pointed questions designed to test the overall system.  Some of the compliance audit questions may include what users were added and when, who has left the company and whether their user IDs were revoked and which who has access to critical systems within the organization.

Preparation for an IT security compliance audit takes time to prepare for as there is a lot of documentation to prepare and evaluate.  Many large organizations are turning to GRC (governance, risk management and compliance) software which enables CIOs to show auditors if their organization is in compliance or smaller organizations are turning to managed IT services providers to handle their audit to avoid costly fines or suspension of services.

365 iT SOLUTIONS is a leading managed services provider (MSP) in Toronto offering a wide variety of industry leading IT consulting services including Managed IT ServicesIT Support ServicesIT Outsourcing ServicesTech Support Services and Cloud Services.

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