It’s an exciting time when an organization prepares for its IPO, but that excitement shouldn’t distract from the necessary regulations that we must comply with. One of the most overlooked preparations is Identity Governance for your SOX audit.
What is SOX Compliance?
Integrity is paramount for financial reports. In the past, some firms have exaggerated financial reports and forecasts to try to inflate their IPO artificially. Congress passed the Sarbanes Oxley Act of 2002 (SOX) to prevent businesses from doing this. The act requires organizations to record, test, maintain, and review controls affecting financial reporting processes.
SOX also mandates protections for financial records. Security is a growing concern as cyber-attacks continue to penetrate some of the world’s most encrypted systems. These breaches can ruin an organization’s reputation. It can also land an organization in hot water with regulators if the proper provisions aren’t followed.
IT General Controls: The Heart of SOX Compliance
SOX Compliance requires IT General Controls (ITGC) for security and integrity of resources related to the financial data of the enterprise. These controls must be implemented to detect and stop business practices or processes that could compromise the integrity of financial reports. It’s an ongoing effort to ensure continued compliance.
(Identity Governance for your SOX Audit)
ITGCs oversee the entire business’s IT resources when implemented correctly. This includes the technological resources of all departments, whether they are directly associated with financial reports or not.
Why should ITGCs be involved in so many departments? Because ITGCs do more than just ensure accurate financial reports. It also helps manage which employees have access to specific information. Additionally, it facilitates best practices, such as two-factor authentication for employees with access to certain information.
The Importance of Access Reviews and Identity Governance | Identity Governance for your SOX Audit
The components of ITGC aren’t just about compliance with government regulations; they also help protect sensitive data. Access reviews are one of the most crucial components in protecting that data.
As the name applies, access reviews are used to determine which employees have access to sensitive information, former employee privileges that have not been removed, and potential unauthorized access points to protected records. Ongoing access reviews are vital to safeguarding organization data.
On a related note to access reviews, identity governance is also used to ensure that the correct people have access to the information they need when they need it – and, often, only when they need it. It offers another layer of protection for sensitive data. It also helps keep access permissions organized. These measures are crucial for organizations preparing to release their IPO as their list of sensitive user information is likely to increase.
Making ITGC Efficient | Identity Governance for your SOX Audit
As we’ve covered, ITGC compliance is a multi-faceted effort that takes a lot of work and resources. Unfortunately, it’s only one of the many preparations to make when preparing to launch an IPO. It’s unrealistic and often impossible to divert enough internal resources to ensure proper compliance. Since IT departments tend to have more general expertise, it’s unlikely that they can manage ITGC compliance sufficiently – especially while addressing other IT issues.
Fortunately, YouAttest provides a better identity governance solution to help create efficiency and simplicity within the access review process. The automated identity tool is cloud-based and straightforward to use, allowing even the busiest companies to transform their identity and access management procedures.
YouAttest offers a 30-day free trial to illustrate how we can help your company with your access control reviews and meet your SOX ITGC requirements for access reviews.
Start now with YouAttest to increase the information security posture and success of your enterprise for compliance and audit. Gain greater control over the access control review process. Contact us. We are happy to help you with your SOX identity governance and other audit needs.
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