How Compliance Scorecard Helps Manage SOC 2

We all know that safeguarding client data is an absolute must in today's security-conscious business landscape. But how can you prove to current and prospective clients that you have the right controls in place to minimize security risks and vulnerabilities?

Service Organization Control 2 (SOC 2) attestation is one way to go about it.

Developed by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), SOC 2 attestation indicates that a service provider has demonstrated the effective handling and protection of their client’s data. Essentially, it’s a means of substantiating the claim that the data you process is protected by a high level of information security procedures and policies. Obtaining this attestation holds immense value for MSPs because it’s a catalyst for building trust, boosting sales, and gaining a competitive edge.

What is Involved in SOC 2 Certification Audits?

Achieving SOC 2 attestation requires an intensive audit of controls based on  five Trust Service Principles as defined by the AICPA: security, availability, processing integrity, confidentiality, and privacy of customer data by a third party. There are two types of SOC 2 attestation, requiring two different audits by a licensed CPA:

  • SOC 2 Type I involves the assessment of your internal controls at a single point in time and determines whether these controls are suitably designed
  • SOC 2 Type II is an assessment of your ongoing or ‘over a period of time’  SOC 2 compliance and whether the controls you have in place actually work.

The reports you receive from the third-party auditor is a document that attests to the fact that you’ve met SOC 2 compliance requirements.

What Types of Companies Need SOC 2 Attestation?

SOC 2 attestation is not required by any industry, nor is it mandated by any law. There are no fines for violations and no government agencies monitoring your compliance. However, as an MSP that stores, processes, and transmits customer data, you should consider obtaining SOC 2 attestation.

Why? Because SOC 2 compliance fosters confidence among clients, increases revenue, and provides a competitive advantage in the marketplace. Allow us to elaborate.

Why Consider SOC 2 Attestation?

It’s a trust-builder

First, SOC 2 attestation is going to help you build trust with current and prospective clients. When you’ve put in place the controls required to pass an SOC 2 audit, security incidents such as data breaches and privacy violations are far less likely to occur. That means your customers can trust you with their data, and the risk of damage to their reputation and earnings that goes hand in hand with security threats is significantly minimized.

It’s good for the bottom line

The second reason has to do with your bottom line; that is, SOC 2 compliance provides the ammunition you need to close more deals, ultimately increasing your revenue. More and more companies are expecting SOC 2 compliance from their service providers, and that’s reflected in vendor contracts that include SOC 2 attestation as a non-negotiable requirement. Even when that’s not the case, you can leverage your seriousness about cybersecurity as a selling point to prospective clients, illustrating your dedication to providing them with exceptional service.

It open the door to bigger and better deals

When you’re trying to win contracts with large enterprises, SOC2 attestation is a must. Enterprises that handle vast amounts of complex and sensitive data typically have their own vigorous security measures, and they require the same of anybody they partner with. For US-based enterprises, SOC2 is the most commonly accepted report for proving that you take security measures as seriously as they do. Without it, corporations are less likely to trust you to protect their huge investments, and you’re less likely to win these top-dollar deals.

How Compliance Scorecard Helps Manage SOC 2

SOC 2 audits are challenging, to say the least. What makes them even more challenging is the fact that SOC 2 does not prescribe any specific controls. Your organization’s requirements are based on the way you operate and, while this allows for a certain degree of flexibility, it also makes it difficult to know what controls to have in place.

The best way to prepare for an audit is to review your systems, policies, and procedures, compare them with the AICPA’s Trust Service Criteria, and take corrective actions where your internal controls are insufficient. And the best way to do that is to use a tool that does the alignment, authorization, adoption, and assessment work for you.

This is where Compliance Scorecard comes in. The first governance-as-a-service (GaaS) platform of its kind, Compliance Scorecard supports you throughout the SOC 2 audit process in the following ways:

Aligning with SOC 2 Compliance Requirements

Compliance Scorecard ensures that your documents and business practices are in alignment. The browser-based, user-friendly document library teaches you how to write documents and policies that reflect SOC2 controls and procedures, making the implementation process seamless.

Streamlining the Approval Processes

Compliance Scorecard simplifies the approval process. Within the platform, you can obtain e-signature approvals, facilitate feedback, and access versioning. This ensures that updates to documents go through a traceable approval cycle, aiding auditors in understanding the evolution of compliance measures over time.

Policy Implementation and Compliance Culture

Compliance Scorecard supports the implementation of security policies and procedures by ensuring that they are effectively communicated, understood, and adhered to by employees, a key aspect auditors assess during SOC 2 audits.

Regular Evaluation and Monitoring

As part of the Type II audit, continuous monitoring and evaluation of governance programs is required, and this is a key function of Compliance Scorecard.

Book a Compliance Scorecard Demo

The benefits of being able to demonstrate the effectiveness of your cybersecurity policy to customers are undeniable and, although the SOC 2 audit process is anything but easy, Compliance Scorecard can do all the heavy lifting of auditing for you.

Ready to close more deals, drive revenue, and gain a competitive edge with SOC 2 certification? Book a demo with us or download our governance playbook today.

Read more

What Do Contracts and Compliance Have in Common? Process!
FTC Safeguards Rule: What MSPs Need to Know
Acceptable Use Policy for AI Tools: Download Now

Posted in