Tag: soc 2

SOC 2 Cheat Sheet

SANS put together a great overview of SOC 2 terminology, report structure breakdown, and process in their signature cheat sheet format. This is a great document to keep handy if you are an auditor, executive, sales person, or whomever that may have to come in contact with a SOC 2 at some point in time. This is slightly outdated as of the Fall 2022 refresh of the SOC 2 but still a very handy item! Click here to download the sheet in PDF

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User Access Reviews

User access reviews are a critical control in almost any IT control framework because they help ensure that users have the appropriate level of access to sensitive data and systems. Without integrity of system access how can you know the data is trustworthy? In many industries, regulatory bodies have strict requirements for how organizations must manage access to sensitive information. SOC 1 and SOC 2 expect user access to be appropriate for all in-scope systems, one of such controls includes the review of privileged access – whether that be administrative permissions, confidential data, or just even the system or network itself. A user access review is considered to be a detective control because it is performed after the fact (access was already provided) to detect potential issues overlooked due to inadequate preventative controls (on-boarding/off-boarding). Performing a user access review that should be sufficient to meet your SOC 1 or SOC 2 controls is straightforward, but like anything takes planning and time to execute properly. 1. Define the Access Review Requirements: Establish the systems, boundaries, criteria, and objectives for the access review in order to ensure compliance with regulations, company policies, and industry best practices. 2. Identify the System Owners: Identify system and business owners of in-scope systems who need to be included in the review. 3. Collect User Access Information: Collect user access information, such as user name, roles, groups, applications, and any other relevant data from in-scope systems. 4. Analyze Access Information: Compare user access information to the previously

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SOC 2 Report – Trust Services Criteria and Categories

The System and Organization Controls (SOC) 2 Report will be performed in accordance with AT-C 205 (formerly under AT-101) and based upon the Trust Services Principles, with the ability to test and report on the design (Type I) and operating (Type II) effectiveness of a service organization’s controls (just like SOC 1 / SSAE 18). The SOC 2 report focuses on a business’s non-financial reporting controls as they relate to security, availability, processing integrity, confidentiality, and privacy of a system, as opposed to SOC 1/SSAE 18 which is focused on the financial reporting controls. The Trust Service Principles which SOC 2 is based upon are modeled around four broad areas: Policies, Communications, Procedures, and Monitoring. Each of the principles have defined criteria (controls) which must be met to demonstrate adherence to the principles and produce an unqualified opinion (no significant exceptions found during your audit). The great thing about the trust principles is that the criteria businesses must meet are predefined, making it easier for business owners to know what compliance needs are required and for users of the report to read and assess the adequacy. Many entities outsource tasks or entire functions to service organizations that operate, collect, process, transmit, store, organize, maintain and dispose of information for user entities. SOC 2 was put in place to address demands in the marketplace for assurance over non-financial controls to prevent SOC 1 from being misused just like SAS 70 was. Did you know? A business isn’t required to address all

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SOC 1 Report

A SOC 1 Report (System and Organization Controls Report) is a report on Controls at a Service Organization which are relevant to user entities’ internal control over financial reporting. The SOC1 Report is what you would have previously considered to be the standard SAS70, complete with a Type I and Type II reports, but falls under the SSAE 16 guidance (and soon to be SSAE 18). Please see the following articles discussing the SSAE 16 guidance and additional information related to the SOC 1 (Type I and Type II) Reports: SSAE 16 Type I Report Background Information SSAE 16, The New Standard SSAE 16 Preparation Tips In addition to the SOC 1 report which is restricted to controls relevant to an audit of a user entity’s financial statements, the SOC 2 and SOC 3 reports have been created to address controls relevant to operations and compliance and will be discussed in further detail in the future. Please see the SOC 1 Reporting Guide page for additional information.

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User Access Reviews

User access reviews are a critical control in almost any IT control framework because they help ensure that users have the appropriate level of access to sensitive data and systems.

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