Protecting your clients’ personal and trusted information is critical. Mishandled data can make your organization vulnerable to breaches and increasing security threats, such as the CloudBleed bug, Wannacry ransomware attacks, Spectre vulnerability, and more. In addition, it’s common for businesses to outsource various operations in order to leverage technology and skilled resources while reducing costs. In such cases, vulnerabilities in the application and network of your provider may leave your business open to a variety of attacks, including malware installation or ransomware, significantly costing your organization.
Do you need to provide your clients with proof that their data is intact and safe from all possible security threats? This is where SOC 2 compliance comes into play. SOC 2 is one of the most common types of compliance requirements that every organization should meet to stay ahead of its competitors. Introduced by AICPA (American Institute of CPAs), SOC 2 is based on the Trust Services Criteria of security, availability, processing integrity, confidentiality, and privacy.
To remain competitive, it has become imperative for organizations to make sure that their data is handled securely. Securing data is essential not only to maintain your existing clients but also to acquire new ones. In addition, people and organizations are concerned now more than ever about protecting sensitive information being exchanged, further challenging CIOs to ensure that data systems are secure and intact from any possible threats.
Why should I care about SOC 2 compliance?
Today, many organizations outsource their business operations and services to third-party vendors, possibly putting client data at risk. For this reason, organizations request that their vendors achieve SOC 2 compliance to demonstrate rigorous IT security standards. Let’s take a look at six additional SOC 2 compliance benefits:
1. Clients will most likely request a SOC 2 report sooner or later.
As cybercrime increases rapidly, protecting your client’s sensitive information from unauthorized access and theft should be of utmost priority, eventually making it necessary for your business to meet SOC 2 compliance. If you are a key vendor for your client, and if they are regulated in any way, the chances are higher that their team of auditors will expect you to share SOC 2 compliance reports to fulfill their risk management process. In fact, in A-LIGN’s 2021 Compliance Benchmark Report Survey, 82% of respondents in the Technology industry stated they were currently conducting or planning to conduct a SOC 2 audit in the next 12 months.
2. SOC 2 can bring a competitive advantage to your business.
Having a SOC 2 compliance report in hand could be a great advantage to staying ahead of your competition. When choosing a vendor, larger organizations will frequently request that a reputable auditor prepare the organization with a SOC 2 compliance report. In A-LIGN’s 2021 Compliance Benchmark Report, the data showed 64% of respondents conducted an audit or assessment to win new business and that 14% of respondents lost a business deal because they were missing a compliance certification.
3. Enhanced information security practices.
Being SOC 2 compliant means your organization can better fight back against cybersecurity attacks and data security breaches. One of the main objectives of SOC 2 audits is to ensure that industry best practices and protocols are in place to help organizations protect their systems and stored data from any unauthorized access. Moreover, SOC 2 ensures that confidential information is protected using industry compliance regulations, assisting organizations in improving their information security practices.
4. SOC 2 helps you gain customer trust.
Your clients are well aware of the risks involved in sharing their personal information and expect that your organization manages their data or information securely. When you have a SOC 2 compliance report from a reputable auditor, it will symbolize trust to your clients. In addition, the compliance assessment will help them gain assurance that your business is proactively protecting their information and is serious about information security.
5. Ensure your employees understand best practices.
Simply earning SOC 2 compliance is not enough. It is important that your employees and internal teams fully understand security protocols and industry best practices. Performing a SOC 2 audit will help you verify whether your employees or staff have the ability to identify potential data risks and understand how to implement various security protocols to safeguard the information or data.
SOC 2 Is Worth the Investment
Going through a SOC 2 assessment requires time, dedication, and involvement of third-party auditors to ensure you are compliant with the standards. Achieving SOC 2 compliance offers many benefits and is a testament to your organization’s robust set of security protocols, helping your organization demonstrate its ability to protect sensitive information while following industry best practices. In fact, our survey found that 47% of respondents felt that SOC 2 is the most important assessment for their business.
Get Started on Your SOC 2 Journey Today
As a licensed CPA firm and one of the top issuers of SOC 2 reports in the world, A-LIGN has the people, process, and technology you need to help your organization reach the summit of your potential as it pertains to compliance.
To learn more about how A-LIGN’s SOC 2 services can transform your business and help provide your customers with peace of mind, contact our SOC 2 professionals at [email protected]