Running a business has its fair share of things to love and detest, especially if you are a B2B SaaS company. As an engineer, building a great product might give you the most joy, but being allowed in the door by prospective customers is an entirely different ballgame.
While you can vouch for the security of your product, that is usually not enough to satisfy your target customers’ requirements. But do you know what is? A certified compliance report such as SOC 2 or an internationally accredited certificate such as ISO 27001! Compliance reports following well-recognized, industry-standard frameworks not only attest to the security that your product and your company provide, but also allow you to gain the trust of your prospective customers that you will keep their data both safe and confidential. Compliance with frameworks such as SOC 2, ISO 27001, HIPAA, and others is essential today for SaaS companies to earn customers’ trust.
When it comes to compliance, the best way to complete your compliance readiness and seamlessly sail through audits is by using automation. It is probably not the first time you have heard this since automation, along with concepts like AI, machine learning, continuous compliance, and SaaS integrations, are the buzzwords of IT compliance today. However, suppose the compliance process depends on labor-intensive manual monitoring and evidence-collection processes. In that case, there are high chances of significant gaps in security, privacy protection, and the other facets of a compliance program. Instead, companies can automate those compliance monitoring and evidence collection processes and ensure continuous compliance using the new generation of compliance automation tools.
Here are five reasons why you should choose a next generation compliance automation platform such as Akitra so you can stay ahead in your competitive market and boost your organization’s growth by garnering the trust of your prospective customers.
- Cost Savings: Automation saves you time and money. Automation of evidence collection from workstations, servers, and cloud platforms and services guarantee continuous monitoring and evidence gathering – significantly more time and resources efficient and cost-effective than manual collection. Akitra accomplishes this by integrating with all audit-relevant services, such as HR services that track employee onboarding and offboarding, DevOps systems, and cloud services platforms like AWS, Azure and GCP.
- Improved Efficiency: Most of these platforms now support multiple frameworks, including SOC 1, SOC 2, ISO 27001, NIST CSF, NIST 800-53, NIST 800-171, PCI DSS, HIPAA, and GDPR. Having one platform for all of them reduces learning time for customers and auditors alike. It improves efficiency and ensures consistent and sustainable compliance processes while saving vast amounts of time and expense – for years to come.
- Improved Collaboration: From initial setup to a completed audit report, you can go through your compliance journey with an easy-to-follow, automation-assisted process with in-built collaboration tools for communication between various stakeholders.
- Single source of truth: Better compliance as the platform can serve as a central repository for all policies, controls, evidence, playbooks, status, and reports relating to compliance. It can eliminate squandered time and the need to start again from scratch with each new audit. This makes compliance readiness and audits a repeatable, cost-effective process instead of a chronic headache and a major annual budget item.
- Continuous Monitoring and Compliance:Continuous compliance is required to ensure that best security practices and controls are in place and are working effectively to maintain compliance. Continuous compliance requires constant monitoring of assets such as SaaS services, data stores, and employee laptops. Continuous monitoring is the only way to quickly identify and remedy security gaps such as unauthorized user access, missing workstation security tools such as an anti-virus and password manager applications, and publicly exposed privacy and confidential data. The auditors verify continuous compliance by taking a random sample of evidence over a given period to confirm that a particular control has been implemented and is working. Also, an auditor can verify the proof of properly implemented controls during the audit process. For example: in the last quarter, were all production releases of the company’s SaaS application tested and authorized by the QA organization before full release? Were all employees properly onboarded by completing security awareness training and acknowledging the company’s Code of Conduct and other mandatory policies?
Establishing trust is a crucial competitive differentiator when doing business with SaaS companies in today’s era of data breaches and compromised privacy. Customers and partners want assurances that the vendors they work with are doing everything possible to prevent disclosing sensitive data and to avoid putting them at risk. Choosing a compliance automation platform will help you get the compliance certifications you need – fast, efficiently, and cost-effectively- while making continuous compliance a reality.
About the Author
Naveen Bisht is the Founder and CEO of AKITRA, an AI-powered, Cloud-based Cybersecurity, and Compliance Automation company. A serial entrepreneur who has founded and led numerous companies in the security and network infrastructure industries. He was the founder and CEO of Straks, SecurAct, Nayna Networks, and Ukiah Software (acquired by Novell). He is the past Chair of Programs and a Board Member of TiE Silicon Valley (SV). He started TiE Silicon Valley My Story Program in 2011 to inspire budding entrepreneurs and is also a founder of Interactive CISO Roundtable for cybersecurity professionals to discuss issues facing the industry. He pursued Ph.D. studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara; he holds an MS from Texas Tech and; an MS/BS degree from the Birla Institute of Technology & Science. He holds nine patents in artificial intelligence, security, and networking and has published several papers and articles on entrepreneurship and industry trends.
Read the original article published by GRC Viewpoint here.