Every SOC 2 compliance audit is challenging, and the stakes are high. Success means greater trustworthiness for your business, better protection of your data and IT infrastructure, and increased business possibilities. Failure can put your data, your systems, customers’ private information, and your reputation at risk. Fortunately, there are four steps to maximize success, with your first audit and every audit after that.
Know your needs. SOC 2 is based on five Trust Service Criteria – Security, Availability, Processing Integrity, Confidentiality, and Privacy. The Trust Services Criteria framework at the heart of SOC requirements focuses on four broad areas of requirements – Policies, Communications, Procedures, and Monitoring. Your team must carefully evaluate your specific goals for your SOC 2 compliance audit, then map these to the appropriate Trust Service Criteria and related requirements. For many companies, the Security criterion is the highest priority, as it directly affects the ability to enable adequate levels of Confidentiality and Privacy.
Select the right people for your team. Your SOC 2 compliance audit efforts likely will involve every other function at your business. Therefore, your compliance planning team should include representation from all significant business operational areas. This should include, at minimum, Finance, HR, IT, Legal, and Security, both cyber and physical.
Choose the right auditor. If you choose an auditor based on price or speed of audit completion, you risk disappointment at best and a SOC 2 report your customers or business partners won’t accept at worst. Focus instead on criteria such as accessibility, credibility, relevant experience with your business or industry, and transparency.
Conduct a detailed pre-audit assessment. To address the Security criterion requirements, your business may need as many as 100 controls – documented and enforced procedures, processes, and policies. You and your colleagues need to know what controls you have in place, whether they are effective and enforced, and what controls need to be added, improved, or replaced. A comprehensive pre-audit assessment conducted with your chosen auditor is the best way to identify challenges before they become problems that impede your journey to SOC 2 compliance.
Get audit-ready and stay that way. SOC 2 compliance audits are a critical foundation for the robust, consistent, transparent processes that enable verifiable trust for your company. Trustero Compliance as a Service works with you and your trusted auditor to achieve and sustain SOC 2 compliance continuously, effectively, efficiently, and economically – and without expensive investments in hardware, software, or services.