SOC 1 SSAE 18 Roadmap for Services Organizations
Looking for a comprehensive SOC 1 SSAE 18 roadmap towards compliance, one that ensures businesses (i.e., service organizations) throughout North America can become compliant by successfully completing an annual audit – then take note of the following critical topics you need to know about – courtesy of NDNB, one of North America’s leading providers of regulatory compliance audits and assessments.
7 Things to Know About SOC 1 SSAE 18 Compliance
1. Begin with a Readiness Assessment: Want to be successful with your SOC 1 SSAE 18 endeavors – sure you do – then begin with a comprehensive readiness assessment from NDNB; a proactive and highly useful audit mechanism for helping determine and assess critical issues relating to scope, remediation, personnel, facilities, and more. Without a readiness assessment, you’re setting yourself up for major challenges and hurdles that will cost you more time and energy in the long-run.
2. Understand the Importance of Remediation: One of the more challenging, demanding – and often overlooked – elements of SOC 1 SSAE 18 compliance is remediation. Keep in mind that no company has a picture perfect internal control environment – it rarely exists – which means numerous deficiencies have to be corrected, such as authoring missing processes and procedures to correcting system configurations, changing, modifying, and enhancing operational internal control processes, and much more. This can take time – it all depends on how mature your control environment is – and it’s why NDNB offers tools for completing remediation quickly.
3. Processes and Procedures are Critical: The world of regulatory compliance – whatever the standard, framework, of best practice is – requires a heavy application of information security processes and procedures and other supporting documents. In fact, developing audit documentation is often one of the most time-consuming, yet often overlooked, aspect of regulatory compliance.
4. Technical and Security Remediation is a Must: While processes and procedures are always high on the list for SOC 1 SSAE 18 remediation, so are the numerous technical initiatives that must often be performed. From inappropriate access rights to weak passwords, poorly configured system security – and more – there’s often much to do, and NDNB can assist. We offer expert personnel who can actually help implement the necessary changes to systems, along with providing detailed hardening guides and checklists. It’s just one of the many reasons why businesses all throughout North America (and that includes Canada!) choose NDNB.
5. Assessing Third-Party Providers is Paramount: In today’s business world, it seems as if every business is outsourcing a service or function to another business. Because of this, such activities can have a direct impact on SOC 1 SSAE 18 reporting as “subservice organizations” – entities that YOUR company outsources to – may very well require their internal controls to be assessed for reporting. Now, many of these subservice organizations may very well have their own compliance report – such as an SOC 1 SSAE 18 audit or perhaps a SOC 2 audit – which can be helpful, but you and your auditor will still need to discuss this issue if in fact you outsource services to another entity.
6. Continuous Monitoring is Essential: You’ve worked extremely hard for getting prepared for your annual SOC 1 SSAE 18 assessment – you’ve developed and formalized all the necessary procedures and processes – but it’s not a “one and done” concept, not at all. It’s time to implement the notion of “continuous monitoring” into your control environment. It means ensuring that your internal controls continue to function as designed and are operating effectively.
How do you go about implementing a “continuous monitoring” program – by using the forms and templates developed specifically by NDNB, that’s how! We offer helpful checklists that ensure you’re constantly monitoring your internal controls, which is a must in today’s world of regulatory compliance.
SOC 1 SSAE 18 Assessments – Talk to the Experts at NDNB
If you’re in need of an SOC 1 SSAE 18 assessment – or any other type of regulatory compliance audit – and are located in North America – then consider talking to the experts at NDNB. We have years of real-world experience in performing regulatory compliance audits and assessments, so give us a call today and let’s discuss your needs. We offer the full spectrum of compliance services and solutions, from readiness assessments to remediation services, to the issuance of final audit reports.
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Regulatory compliance is truly here to stay – it’s just the sign of the times – so companies need to be prepared for annual audits and start to budget accordingly for such costs. The idea of “one and done” for compliance is long gone as clients, regulators, and interested third-parties will be requesting annual audits, especially SOC 1 SSAE 18 assessments.