In an IT security audit, an organization’s IT infrastructure is examined in a detail to determine security vulnerabilities. By using a method like IT automation, a business is able to discover security gaps and weaknesses in its IT system. It is beneficial to all companies who want to stay in compliance with various national and international regulations.
An ideal audit would examine the company’s on-premise or cloud-based infrastructure on a regular basis. An entire IT network, including firewalls, routers, and the like, may be part of the infrastructure.
Since security audits are often suggested, why don’t we do them regularly?
An IT security audit checks hardware, software, networks, data centres, and servers for general security weaknesses and threats. Most simply, IT security audits are used to find out how safe a company’s present IT architecture is. Answer the following questions whenever you perform it:
- Security threats and vulnerabilities are the current topics that your system confronts.
- Is your system currently able to resist any form of cyber attack? Can you rapidly regain full control of your organisation if you are the victim of a data breach or service outage?
- Are there any procedures or instruments in your security system that are completely useless?
- How are the problems that were discovered in the security audit addressed? And what may be the long-term consequences of implementing such decisions?
- Do you meet the typical privacy and security guidelines such as GDPR, HIPAA, PCI-DSS, ISO, etc? Are you able to identify all of the security audit and penetration testing requirements in order to get certified?
- Will your IT infrastructure be in compliance with the acquisition of sensitive data, as well as the subsequent processing and retention?
Note: In general, to acquire certification from a regulatory body or a recognised third-party vendor, security auditors will do a compliance audit. There are always many resources available for the firm’s team that oversees the security of the system to perform internal audits and ascertain the standards and compliance levels of the organisation.
In order to carry out an IT security audit, undertake the following steps:
In order to verify that the IT security audit process has been completed and has met its objectives, an auditor must make sure that the following actions are completed, and the needed information is obtained:
1. Establishing the company’s aim by using the findings of the security audit
It indicates what the business seeks to achieve from the security audit by setting forth the requirements. This concept covers short-term goals, business logic, the connection between short-term and long-term goals, and so on.
When setting up a goal for an IT security audit, it is essential to keep many points in mind. In addition to the extent of the audit, assets included in the scope of testing, the schedule, compliance criteria, and an easy-to-understand final test report, the final report should also be understandable to non-IT professionals.
2. After doing research, planning the needed processes and testing protocols must be completed.
In some cases, winging it may not lead to a good outcome. Pre-planning has the nice side effect of smoothing the process. The decision on who performs various roles and functions, the phases within the testing process, selected tools for testing, data assessment, and other logistics can all be made by you.
Every choice should be documented and then communicated with those affected by the decision.
3. Third, auditing the job completed
It is best to determine in the planning phase on the many steps involved in auditing, including the audit checklist, techniques, and standards.
These procedures may include conducting a file-sharing service audit, scanning various IT resources, databases, SaaS apps, and physical examination of the data centre to see if the building and equipment are secure in the event of a disaster.
In addition to conducting interviews with potential test subjects, security specialists should also speak with employees who are not part of the testing team to find out their awareness of the business security requirements and compliance with company policy to identify any possible entry holes.
4. Determining the final results
The compiled information should be compiled into a document that is accessible by the company stakeholders and the IT team so that it can be referenced in the future. For making sure that the document is easy to comprehend, independent of a reader’s technical understanding, it is important that it be understandable to anybody reading it. In the future, developers and security teams will be able to resolve situations similar to this on their own.
Stakeholders can use this report to make crucial business choices related to their customers’ personal information security.
5. Measures put in place to deal with discovered issues
Once you’ve gone through and selected remedies for concerns stated in the final report paper, you’ll complete this stage. We also need to include any relevant security updates for these problems. Remediation strategies often involve,
- Doing IT security testing, and resolving any problems discovered
- Learn better techniques to deal with sensitive data, such as by detecting malware and phishing attempts before they are made.
- To increase overall security and other compliance measures, provide staff with adequate training.
- Increasing security by utilising modern technologies and following up on any questionable behaviour is referred to as routine monitoring.
Always bear in mind that an IT security audit differs from a risk assessment for your internal and external assets. An IT security audit is required after doing a risk assessment of the possible vulnerabilities and threats that might be exploited, especially by the computer security specialists.