Getting Started With SOC 2

Luis Cruz | February 8, 2022
Getting Started with Soc 2 blog

Clients and customers alike want to know that their information is safe and secure. They want to be sure that their data is not going to be leaked or hacked. It has become common for companies to use compliance to prove that they are trustworthy for their clients, and guess what? Doing this has been proven to work! Got your attention? I thought so, so let's dig a little deeper into SOC 2 and I’ll share a little bit about how LogicGate's SOC 2 Compliance Application works for you.

What is SOC 2 Compliance?

SOC 2 (System and Organization Controls 2) is a framework applicable to all technology service or SaaS companies that store customer data in the cloud to ensure that your organization continues to mitigate the risk of data exposure. 

The purpose of SOC 2 is to ensure that data will be kept secure, the company will comply with regulations, and the company has processes to mitigate risk. We have a few other blog posts that cover SOC 2 more in-depth if you want to check those out. Gain a better understanding of the basics of SOC 2 compliance here. And learn about the benefits of enhancing your SOC compliance approach with automation here.

For now, I’d like to walk you through some of the top takeaways I’ve identified throughout the conversations our team has had with customers to help them get started with their SOC 2 audits.

SOC 2 Takeaway #1: To stay competitive in the market, you need to comply with SOC 2

If you're a service provider or provider that handles customer data, you need SOC 2 certifications to compete in the market. Handling may include any storage, processing, or transmission of customer data. To comply with SOC 2, you must follow five key AICPA principles: security, availability, processing integrity, confidentiality, and data protection.

The AICPA has developed a set of criteria relevant to the five principles listed above. These criteria support evaluating the design and operating effectiveness of controls to ensure sensitive information is protected.

 SOC 2 Takeaway #2: There are two SOC 2 types

  • Type I reports contain descriptions of the service organization's system(s) and the suitability of the design of controls.
  • Type II reports cover everything in Type I plus descriptions of the operating effectiveness of those controls.

Not sure which is the right one for your organization? If your company is required to demonstrate its SOC 2 compliance, it may be beneficial to explore a SOC 2 Type II report. The Type II report is considered the stronger of the two because it demonstrates that the security processes and procedures are in place and effective over a period of time. If there’s some urgency to show SOC 2 compliance — for example, there’s a timeline in place — a Type I report can be achieved faster so it can be a good starting point prior to moving to a Type II report in the future.

SOC 2 Takeaway #3: Being SOC 2 compliant has major benefits

Benefit #1: SOC 2 reports demonstrate that your organization's security measures are effective without sharing specific information about your company, processes, or intellectual property.

You want to make conversations about risk positive and provide confidence to your clients by demonstrating that you have the appropriate systems and controls to cover trust services criteria for the services you offer.

Benefit #2: The market expects SOC 2, so distinguish yourself from your competitors.

SOC 2 is the most sought-after report for companies dealing with third parties storing customer data in the cloud in the US market.

You want to be the best service provider you can be, so why not make it easier on yourself to show this off? Suppose a potential customer, auditor, or third party requests a report. In that case, you can easily provide them with this as long as you are SOC 2 certified, have processes in place, and have an efficient platform to execute. With all three of those in place, you can easily distribute SOC 2 reports in no time to ensure you have adequate protection controls for this information.

Benefit #3: Your security posture will improve, but not for the reasons you may think.

Improving and streamlining information security or compliance processes is a big undertaking. Why not kill two birds with one stone? Use the SOC 2 certification and platform selection process to justify these needed improvements to leadership.

Implementing new security or compliance methodologies and processes opens up discussions into many areas of your business. Deploying SOC 2 and its accompanying platform will give your company valuable insights and spur more conversations on how and where to improve your operations and reduce the risk of security breaches.

Data breaches are becoming increasingly common and with the average cost of a data breach approaching $3.86 million. By going through the SOC 2 certification process, your organization can understand where your sensitive data lives and implement controls, processes, and policies to protect this data and ultimately, your organization and customers. 

Next Steps for Getting SOC 2 Certified

If you are a company that handles or stores customer data, compiling with the SOC 2 criteria will ensure your firm complies with industry standards, giving your customers the confidence that you have the right processes and practices to safeguard their data.

I cover the recommended next steps for how to prepare for a SOC 2 audit in this blog post. Still, to put things into perspective, you need a partner who knows what it takes to comply with the SOC 2 Trust Services Criteria successfully.

For that, our Risk Cloud platform helps transform your company's approach to risk. With Risk Cloud you can efficiently map business processes, audit infrastructure, and security practices, and identify and correct any gaps or vulnerabilities effectively, making you the owner of your compliance and not the other way around.

Learn more about LogicGate's SOC 2 Compliance Application to see how it can help your organization prepare for and achieve a SOC 2 attestation report.

Learn how one LogicGate customer, Amount, used Risk Cloud to establish their own robust processes, gather evidence of controls, and attain Type 2, Soc 1, and 2 certifications. Read the full case study.

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