Your IT department is an essential part of your company’s operations and interaction on the internet. Are you concerned that this dependence has come with increased risks? An IT Audit may be just what your company needs.
In the first nine months of this year, there was a 17 percent increase in the number of data breaches compared to the total from last year. Cyber hacking is on the rise, and companies need to prepare.
One way to reduce business ownership risk is to ensure that your IT hardware and software are up to date. Here’s a helpful guide to performing a comprehensive IT Audit.
What Is an IT Audit and Why Do I Need One?
An IT or information system audit is a detailed look at your IT systems, including hardware infrastructure, policies, and procedures.
Your main goal is to reduce any risk to the company that might result from poorly maintained systems, lack of security, and lack of general controls.
An audit helps improve confidence that the business is keeping private data secured, and they are protecting the systems from any breach or hack that might occur. Even a small business owner should consider one.
How Does an IT Audit Work?
The IT industry has a clearly defined approach to an IT audit. The auditor gathers evidence to ensure that software and equipment are up-to-date and secure. Then they look to see if staff follow procedures and rules.
Businesses put controls in place to ensure the integrity of data. These controls also protect the security of the IT systems. Controls can be procedures and rules, and they can include responses programmed into the software.
Internal accounting controls protect data and employees from fraudulent activity. Operational controls support efficiency and consistency.
How Does an Auditor Test Controls?
Audit procedures use two types of testing: compliance and substantive testing.
In the compliance testing process, auditors gather evidence to see if your business is following procedures. Substantive testing looks at how well your data and information are collected, protected, and secured.
The Connection to the Outside World
The auditor wants to ensure that connections between your hardware, network, and clients are secure. Safeguards ensure a virus can’t invade your system.
Software and Hardware
It’s vital to install the most current software versions and that all security measures are in place. Certus systems ensure your data erasure from old storage devices.
An IT audit looks at how your facilities are operating. The auditor wants to see accurate processes, and quick, efficient work performance.
The audit reviews your emergency plans, tests physical security, and evaluates access to the facility.
Knowledge Is Powerful
When you learn about the purpose of an IT audit, you will realize how important it is from a risk management perspective. A regular IT audit can protect you by revealing potential security risks. Then you can take action to resolve the problems.
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