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SOC 2 Security compliance Designing security programs

Who must comply with SOC 2 requirements

If you’re a business that deals with customer data, SOC 2 is a hot topic in both your security landscape and your pitch for new customers. More and more, potential clients are making SOC 2 compliance an absolute necessity for any vendor they’ll consider closing a deal with.

But what exactly is SOC 2? And who needs to comply with SOC 2’s requirements?

In short, SOC 2 is a type of audit developed specifically for companies who store customer information. In order to earn a SOC 2 attestation – that hefty report that plays a key role in winning new clients – you have to prove that your organization’s internal controls can assure the security, availability, processing integrity, confidentiality, and privacy of your customers’ data. In the world of SOC 2, those qualities are referred to as the Trust Services Criteria. 

So who falls into this large umbrella of companies who store customer information? All of the following types of organizations meet the description:

  • Software as a service (SaaS) organizations
  • Companies that deal with business intelligence or analytics
  • Financial service institutions, including:
    • Banking
    • Investment
    • Insurance
    • Security
  • Any other organization that stores customer data in the cloud

All organizations that fit this description should be making SOC 2 compliance a priority. And, you should have a strong understanding about why SOC 2 is so important for your organization.

Why is SOC 2 important for SaaS companies and cloud vendors?

If you’re one of these SaaS companies or cloud vendors, complying with SOC 2 is incredibly important to your company’s sustainable future. Going through what can feel like an arduous process of earning a SOC 2 report will ensure you are doing everything you can to keep your customers’ data safe. 

But it’s not just your customers who benefit from this work. You benefit, too – you build trust with your current and future customers, close more deals, build more revenue, and maintain a positive relationship and reputation with everyone involved. Not to mention, many customers won’t close a deal without your SOC 2 compliance – so it keeps customers coming back to you rather than running away.

The reality is that everyone benefits from SOC 2: your business, your clients, and you. Your clients will have peace of mind that their data is safe. Your business will have a growing customer base and a bright future. And as a leader, you will have the ability to keep all parts of your business running smoothly with the confidence that your security processes are doing what they should.

Is SOC 2 a legal requirement?

Unlike HIPAA (the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) for organizations who deal with customers’ health information, SOC 2 is not actually a legal requirement. SOC 2 and its various types (SOC 2 Type 1 vs Type 2) were developed by the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA). The reports that are issued to prove SOC 2 compliance are provided by independent auditors, or CPAs. The reports provide objective proof to your clients that everything you claim about your security’s alignment with the Trust Services Criteria is true. 

While SOC 2 isn’t monitored by a government agency and doesn’t incur hefty fines for violations, achieving compliance is still a vital process for SaaS companies and cloud vendors. There may not be the danger of fines for violations, but there’s definitely the danger of losing business if you can’t prove you’re on the path towards compliance with SOC 2. In reality, SOC 2 is just as important as any legal requirement for SaaS companies or cloud vendors. 

And while SOC 2 isn’t a legal obligation, the added bonus is that many of its requirements overlap with HIPAA. So by complying with SOC 2, you are also helping your company along the path to HIPAA compliance, which means avoiding those legal fines AND doing the work for two major requirements at once (HIPAA + SOC 2: Why Tackling Them in Unison Makes Sense). 

How Strike Graph can help with SOC 2 compliance 

If you’re ready to achieve SOC 2 compliance, Strike Graph is ready to help you get there. Just getting started? We can help you learn the things a founder should know about SOC 2, and support you from the very beginning of your journey until you’ve reached the compliance you’re aiming for. If you’ve already begun the process, we can help you maintain your security or take your compliance to the next logical step. 

Regardless of where you are in your journey, our compliance platform ensures that the process works for you. Our initial risk assessment and scalable approach makes sure that you are only doing that work that needs to be done - saving you valuable time and money. 

So if you’re a SaaS company or cloud vendor, SOC 2 is a must. You’ll close more deals, build revenue, and maintain a competitive advantage. Strike Graph is ready to help you get there.

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