Making Data Security Compliance a Revenue Driver

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To join the game of poker, players are required to place a minimum bid sometimes referred to as table bets: the smallest applicable amount required to play. With that, you’re in the game, but without it, you’d be out in the cold. In today’s market, compliance with data and transaction security has become very important. In order to play, having specific reports has become the minimum viable bid. With SOC 2 (short for Service Organization Control) and/or ISO (International Organization for Standardization) 27001 Risk Assessment Report in hand (or whatever relevant framework in your market), you have game, a shot at getting a piece of the work.

Frameworks as basic requirements for growth

Today, being sacked by ransomware is no longer a shock, and breaches of sensitive information are commonplace. Incidents like the SolarWinds breach (with an average total cost to businesses of $12 million) and the CNA ransomware attack (total cost: $40 million) show the massive financial consequences that come with lenient attitudes and less than best practices.

These numbers have had a direct impact on how third parties choose to do business and create partnerships. Now, C-suites around the world have exploited, “It’s an IT problem, so we don’t care” due to hibernation caused only to find themselves on the tedious task of addressing compliance. But it is worth it; Unless companies demonstrate with a high degree of certainty that their systems are protected from the next big threat, no potential partner or customer in their right mind will ever cut a deal with them.

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With SOC 2 or ISO 27001 on hand, partners and customers can feel confident that data is safe and sound – they are the foundation upon which deals and partnerships are formed, and enable the growth needed to drive business. But how can organizations make better use of such frameworks, and how can they remove the boredom that generally comes with compliance-related activities?

Frames as closing the deal

SOC 2, ISO 27001, and the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI-DSS), among other certifications, provide guidance (although some are less specific than others) on how to meet security best practices, both technically and operationally. They provide organizations with the guidance needed to enhance security, meet regulatory requirements, improve business operations, and take care of other activities needed to achieve corporate goals (primarily, securing new customers and solidifying existing partnerships).

Having certifications can be a powerful sales advantage; Discussing compliance issues can become an essential part of the sales team’s initial point of contact. This can greatly reduce friction with potential customers, as sales representatives can quickly and seamlessly provide concrete answers to most (if not all) security related questions. This means that compliance teams essentially have to deal with escalating issues, such as when reports indicate a loss of control.

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Automation is the key

But to achieve this state, companies have to stop viewing security assurance as something that can be accessed as quickly as possible. With the right approach, security frameworks can create trust-based relationships that support scaling and become true closing of deals. The key to achieving this lies in automating manual, tedious, time-consuming and error-prone compliance activities in order to optimally meet the frameworks and day-to-day compliance challenges.

With automation, you can take advantage of compliance to drive and sustain growth. By continually gathering evidence of background control, your team can invest time in other initiatives, and the entire lifecycle of all policies can be coordinated, saving time and preventing errors. You can also ensure that evidence is automatically linked to relevant frameworks, which also saves time and effort by eliminating the need to collect new evidence with each audit. And by assigning direct plug-in guides relevant to your controls, you can stop wasting money and resources on professional advice. Automation is at the core of an integrated and scalable compliance program that helps clients see your clear commitment to best practices.

With automation, meeting frameworks are simpler than ever – and that’s a huge benefit, as potential clients need to know they can trust you, now more than ever.

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