SOC 2 Compliance

Defining SOC 2

As a greater number of individuals and companies have begun using cloud-based technology, it has become important to ensure that the data stored in these processors and storage systems are properly protected and secured.

The American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) created the System and Organizational Control 2 (SOC 2), which is an audit that analyzes detailed requirements regarding the security of customer data.

SOC 2 compliance is not limited to cloud-based providers, but it is one of the ways one can ensure that a provider is committed to secure data storage.

SOC 2 Criteria

Acting in a similar manner to frameworks like ISO 27001, SOC 2 has a flexible model that allows a business to follow only certain SOC 2 criteria and meet only those applicable compliance standards. Therefore, SOC 2 compliance audits will look different for each entity.

There are five SOC 2 criteria an entity can comply with, and they are referred to as the trust service criteria or principles: security, availability, processing integrity, confidentiality, and privacy.

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For the security principle, the audit examines the organization’s safeguards against unauthorized access of data and the security policies/tools in place.

The availability principle deals with the accessibility of the organization’s system. Per any contracts or obligations in place, can parties to the previous access the system or service as stipulated. Availability requires a positive answer.

When a system promises a certain speed and quality of data storage and delivery, they must comply with that promise. The processing integrity principle addresses just that – the entity has to ensure the system is processing data according to the guidelines it has set.

In specific situations or industries, certain data can be restricted to only a few people, deeming the data confidential. Confidential data includes protected health information, personal information, and financial information – among many others. The organization should have proper mechanisms in place to ensure confidentiality of said data.

The privacy principle deals with the use, collection, and removal of data. The organization should be following best practices as delineated in its privacy notice. The privacy controls in place should protect the data according to privacy principles.

Meeting SOC 2 Compliance

SOC 2 Compliance Report

Following an independent SOC 2 compliance audit, a company or organization will receive an SOC 2 report with the results of their security mechanisms in place. Organizations looking to meet SOC 2 compliance prior to an audit are encouraged to contact CDG for personalized SOC 2 consulting and expert guidance on the creation and maintenance of security procedures and frameworks.

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