As more and more organizations are adopting cloud-based solutions to manage their databases, the need for cloud compliance has only increased over time. The rising prominence of working remotely and the need for utmost flexibility have resulted in organizations across the board availing of cloud-based services to manage their IT infrastructure.
Cloud compliance helps companies in ensuring the utmost security and privacy of the data collected from their customers by compliance with globally recognized standards and regulations such as GDPR, CCPA, SOX, PCI DSS, SOC 2, ISO 27001, and many more. Also, cloud data compliance helps companies in empowering their customers to be well-versed with how their data is collected and utilized by them for their business processes. This helps you build a relationship of trust with your customers.
While cloud compliance provides you with a range of benefits, it also comes with a few challenges, one of them being the difficulty in switching from on-premise to cloud-based platforms. In order to combat these challenges and streamline cloud compliance processes, organizations have started automating a number of compliance processes.
Before getting to the automation of cloud compliance processes, let us understand the major challenges pertaining to cloud compliance.
Major Challenges In Implementing Cloud Compliance
1. Time-consuming Audit Processes
This issue is common with implementing most cloud-based cybersecurity solutions. It often takes too long for an organization to audit the systems as companies may have to set aside hundreds of hours for carrying out every audit across multiple platforms. The time taken to collect a significant amount of technical datasets on security controls and processes often brings other security processes within an organization to a standstill.
The time your employees spend in the manual collection of data, taking relevant screenshots, and organizing evidence can be spent focusing on the core business issues and tapping into new opportunities.
2. Difficulty In Switching from On-premise Environment To Cloud
One of the most common challenges faced by organizations in implementing cloud compliance solutions is the difficulty in making the switch from traditional on-premise environments. The capabilities and approach required in the case of on-premise infrastructure are no longer applicable once you switch to cloud-based data compliance.
This often makes the process of data management and evidence gathering complicated for the organization. A shift to cloud-based compliance solutions requires you to re-architect your IT infrastructure and security practices that may have been in place for several years. This is as good as starting from scratch.
3. The Change In Speed
As compared to the traditional monolithic app updates and security processes, change management and software management within cloud-based platforms is considerably fast. This often makes it difficult for organizations to keep up with the pace while applying data security and privacy implications within the cloud environment.
This is likely to cause sudden and unwanted gaps in data security and a lack of clarity regarding cloud compliance processes. When your employees are not able to match up to the required standards of a cloud-based compliance platform, it may result in them putting the security and privacy of valuable data in jeopardy.
Benefits Of Automating Cloud Compliance
All the challenges discussed above (and many more) can be resolved by automating cloud compliance processes. Automating cloud compliance allows users to streamline three major processes – collecting evidence, evidence-to-control mapping, and cross-walking evidence across common cloud-based control frameworks.
Automated cloud compliance allows your employees to streamline a range of security processes and help them focus on the core business issues.
Here are some of the key benefits of automating your cloud compliance processes:
1. Streamlined Evidence Collection
Automated evidence collection allows your system to crawl your cloud environment to gather all necessary technical evidence from the concerned SaaS applications and your IT infrastructure. Such evidence may include encrypted data at rest, network segmentation or configuration, encryption key management, background check reports, vulnerability scan reports, and other important datasets.
The results provided to the users are converted into formatted reports suitable for internal review and audit, making both these processes easier. Automated evidence collection helps you save thousands of hours spent on conducting multiple audits every year.
2. Automated Evidence-to-control Mapping
Data mapping allows you to take a specific piece of evidence and associate the same with a suitable control. When a piece of evidence applies to multiple controls while undertaking a single audit, automated evidence-to-control mapping helps you speed up your processes and increase their accuracy.
Instead of uploading the same evidence multiple times over a long period of time, automated evidence-to-control mapping helps you get done with all the associations once your data is uploaded.
3. Automated Cross-walking Evidence
When a specific piece of evidence does not only apply to multiple controls within a specific data compliance requirement but also applies more controls across other compliance requirements, the need for cross-walking evidence arises.
When you automate the cross-walking evidence, you can easily collect audit evidence for multiple data compliance requirements. All you need to do is automate the re-using of data that has already been collected.
4. Staying Updated With The Data Compliance Standards
An automated data compliance solution helps you ensure that your organization is always up to date with the data compliance standards applicable within your country. It helps you stay informed about all changes and updates made to the regulations, allowing you to alter your processes accordingly.
5. Reducing Human Errors
Like any other automated solution, automated data compliance helps you reduce the scope of errors committed by your employees by streamlining a number of security and privacy processes. It increased the speed, accuracy, and efficiency of your cloud compliance in a way that you get the desired results with minimal errors.
The Final Word
These were some of the pivotal ways in which you can streamline cloud compliance with automation. It is advisable for organizations operating at all scales and belonging to all major industries to switch to automated solutions for ensuring complete security and privacy of their systems.