Cyber Security Services:  Trends and Predictions 

Cyber Security Services

In recent years, the number of cyber security incidents has increased exponentially. In fact, according to a report by Juniper Research, the total cost of data breaches will exceed $2 trillion by 2019. These increased attacks have led to a corresponding demand for cyber security services. 

According to Gartner, the global market for information security services will reach $170.4 billion in 2022, up from $145.2 billion in 2019. That represents a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.6%. 

What trends will shape the cyber security services market in the coming years? Here are some predictions: 

  1. Increased focus on cloud security

With the increasing adoption of cloud services, there will be a corresponding increase in the need for cloud security services. Enterprise users are increasingly looking for providers that can offer comprehensive security solutions for both on-premises and cloud-based systems. 

  1. Rise of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning

Cyber security vendors are already using AI and machine learning technologies to detect and respond to threats in real-time. These technologies will become even more critical in the future, enabling vendors to provide more sophisticated and effective security solutions. 

  1. Greater demand for managed security services

As organizations struggle to keep up with the ever-changing security landscape, they will increasingly outsource their security needs to managed service providers. These providers will offer a wide range of services, including threat detection and response, incident management, and data loss prevention. 

  1. Expansion of the Internet of Things (IoT)

The IoT is expected to grow exponentially in the coming years, with Gartner predicting there will be 20.4 billion connected devices by 2020. This growth will create new security challenges as organizations struggle to protect their ever-expanding networks of devices. 

  1. More stringent data privacy regulations

With the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in the European Union, we can expect to see more stringent data privacy regulations being introduced worldwide. That will create new opportunities for vendors that provide data security and privacy solutions. 

  1. Greater focus on cybersecurity insurance

As the cost of data breaches continues to rise, organizations will increasingly purchase cybersecurity insurance to protect themselves from the financial fallout of an attack. That will create new opportunities for insurers and vendors providing cybersecurity insurance products. 

  1. Emerging markets to drive growth

The cyber security services market is expected to grow faster in emerging markets such as Asia-Pacific, Latin America, the Middle East, and Africa. This growth will be driven by the increasing number of Internet users and the development of the digital economy in these regions. 

  1. Consolidation among vendors

The cyber security services market is highly fragmented, with a large number of small and medium-sized vendors. This fragmentation is expected to continue in the short term. However, in the long term, we can expect to see consolidation among vendors as the market matures. 

  1. New players to enter the market

The cyber security services market is currently dominated by a few prominent vendors, such as Symantec, IBM, and Cisco. However, we can expect to see new players enter the market in the coming years as the market continues to grow. These new entrants will come from various industries, including IT services, cloud computing, and telecommunications. 

  1. Continued growth of the market

The cyber security services market is expected to continue to grow at a rapid pace in the coming years. This growth will be driven by the increasing number of Internet users, the growth of the digital economy, and stringent data privacy regulations. 

These are the ten trends that we think will shape the future of the cyber security services market.

What is threat and vulnerability management? 

What is threat and vulnerability management? 

Threat and vulnerability management includes identifying, assessing, and prioritizing risks to organizational operations (including assets, systems, and people) posed by vulnerabilities. Vulnerabilities may exist in hardware, software, processes, or procedures. Effective threat and vulnerability management help an organization understand its risks and take steps to reduce or eliminate them.   

Threat and vulnerability management is significant because it helps organizations protect themselves from potential threats and vulnerabilities. Organizations can reduce the chances of an incident by identifying risks and taking steps to mitigate them. Additionally, threat and vulnerability management can help organizations recover more quickly if an incident does occur. 

There are a variety of threat and vulnerability management tools and techniques available. Some standard tools and techniques include threat modeling, vulnerability assessments, and threat intelligence.  

Threat modeling is a process for identifying, assessing, and prioritizing risks to organizational operations (including assets, systems, and people). The goal of threat modeling is to help organizations understand their risks and take steps to reduce or eliminate them.  

Vulnerability assessments are threat assessments that focus on identifying and assessing vulnerabilities in systems, processes, or procedures. Vulnerability assessments can be conducted internally or externally and often include threat modeling as part of the assessment process.  

Threat intelligence is information that is used to understand and respond to threats. Threat intelligence can be gathered from a variety of sources, including social media, news reports, and government agencies. Threat and vulnerability management programs should make use of threat intelligence to help identify and assess risks.  

Who Needs a Vulnerability Management Program? 

Any organization that owns or operates information systems needs a threat and vulnerability management program. That includes organizations of all sizes, in all industries, and with all types of information systems.  

Organizations must defend their assets, systems, and people against potential hazards by utilizing threat and vulnerability management solutions. By identifying threats and implementing mitigation procedures, businesses may decrease the likelihood of an incident. Furthermore, threat and vulnerability management programs might aid organizations in recovering more quickly after a crisis if one occurs. 

What Are the Benefits of Vulnerability Management Programs? 

There are many benefits of threat and vulnerability management programs, including: 

– Reduced risk of incidents: Organizations can reduce the chances of an incident occurring by identifying risks and taking steps to mitigate them. 

– Faster incident response: If an incident does occur, threat and vulnerability management programs can help organizations respond more quickly. 

– Improved security: Organizations can improve their security posture by identifying and addressing vulnerabilities. 

– Reduced costs: By mitigating risks, organizations can avoid the costs associated with incidents, such as downtime, data loss, and reputation damage. 

What Are the Components of a Vulnerability Management Program?  

There are four main components of threat and vulnerability management programs: 

– Identification: Organizations must identify their assets, systems, and people at risk. 

– Assessment: Organizations must assess their assets, systems, and people risks. 

– Mitigation: Organizations must take steps to mitigate the risks to their assets, systems, and people. 

– Monitoring: Organizations must monitor their threat and vulnerability management program to ensure it is effective. 

Organizations should also consider using threat intelligence to help identify and assess risks. Threat intelligence is information that is used to understand and respond to threats. Threat intelligence can be gathered from a variety of sources, including social media, news reports, and government agencies.  

Cyber Risk Management Policy

Cyber Risk Management Policy

Cyber risk management is the process of identifying, assessing, and prioritizing cyber risks, followed by implementing mitigations to prevent cyber threats from happening. Cyber risk management provides many benefits to organizations. For example, it can reduce financial loss, reputational damage, and operational failure. 

There are several ways that an organization can implement cyber risk management, including implementing policies and procedures, using technical controls, utilizing insurance coverage (such as cybersecurity insurance), and hiring outside help (such as consulting firms). Still, creating a cyber risk management policy is the most crucial step you should take to keep your organization safe.

What is Cyber Risk Management Policy?

A cyber risk management policy identifies vital assets, controls, security practices, and incident response processes to reduce the likelihood of a cyber incident. It’s essential to create a plan to maintain communication across all areas of your business.

A cyber risk management policy (CRMP) helps identify security incidents that could occur based on incidents that have already happened and then create a plan to prevent and remediate those incidents. This policy helps to ensure compliance with organizational values when designing strategies to combat cyber attackers. A cyber risk management policy is, basically, a plan of action to help prevent and remediate security incidents that could occur on any information system. It outlines how an organization responds to cyber risks or threats associated with the misuse or unauthorized access to electronic data. These risks may include social engineering attacks, network intrusion, computer viruses, ransomware, etc. An example of cyber risk is a denial of service attack, which interrupts the availability of a system or data. 

The CRMP should be created with all necessary components, including the following:

  • Personality factors – personality profiles for each stakeholder
  • Guidance on how to handle difficult situations responsibly without compromising compliance or security
  • Key roles & responsibilities – clear assignment of tasks, so they are completed efficiently & accurately
  • Policies & procedures – make sure all policies are up-to-date, written in language that everyone understands, and easily accessible
  • Metrics used for reporting – provide a metric on how well the cyber risk management policy is being carried out. 

The organization should also include a means to continually improve their cyber risk management program by evaluating it whenever there are changes in strategy or tactics.

Why is Cyber Risk Management Policy Important?

The rise of cybercrime is the reality that all companies face today. As a result, many organizations are looking to adopt or update their existing security protocols and corporate policies. In fact, more than two-thirds of global companies have already written a policy detailing how they will handle incidents involving information theft from outside sources. 

While it’s vital for companies to establish these guidelines, they must also seek ways to protect their networks from inside threats. A cyber risk management policy can help lower your organization’s risk of fraudulent activity by providing a straightforward course of action for how employees respond in the wake of any suspected cyber attack on company systems.

The cyber risk management policy is usually managed by the chief information officer and approved by the company’s chief executive officer. The policy is designed to outline how the business will protect its networks, systems, and data. It also specifies employees’ actions if they suspect that systems have been breached or files accessed illegally. When an employee learns that this type of activity has occurred, they must report it to their manager immediately.

Confirming whether the incident was an act of cybercrime requires further investigation. Therefore, many companies create a chain of command within their IT department that makes reporting possible even if the person who discovers the breach is not an IT professional. While completing investigations can be time-consuming and costly for any organization, establishing a well-thought-out plan allows companies to develop procedures for responding quickly in the event of a cyber breach.

A firm policy also requires that company leaders demonstrate an understanding of how employees can be affected by these types of security risks. The document serves as the baseline for future action, so it’s essential to carefully craft all elements to ensure you meet your organization’s needs and provide workers with the protection they deserve.  

Keep in mind that without a cyber risk management policy, you don’t have an established way to identify when incidents occur and the steps necessary for incident response. If you’re not able to respond effectively in the event that something does happen, it will be more difficult to recover afterward – which could lead to much more significant financial consequences.

Essential Best Practices for your Cyber Risk Management Policy

  1. Understand Where Your Vulnerabilities May Be Hidden

Vulnerabilities are known flaws in technology systems that may provide an attacker with access to systems or data. Because they are known, you can fix them with patches, updates, and upgrades. However, this process depends on the vulnerability being identified first.

To achieve a higher level of cyber security, organizations must understand how to identify and classify vulnerabilities. It is also crucial that companies be able to evaluate risk so that they can make a well-informed decision about whether or not the risk justifies mitigation action being taken.

There are several ways in which you can classify vulnerabilities. The most common one is by the effect they have on systems and data, which makes it possible to identify different types of vulnerabilities. For example, “injection flaws” allow attackers to send malicious code via web form input fields; organizations can mitigate these types of vulnerabilities through proper permission settings on websites and servers. It is also possible to classify vulnerabilities by their origin, making it possible for administrators to search for the particular type of vulnerability.

Certain types of vulnerabilities are more dangerous than others because they provide easier access to systems or data or lead to higher exploitation rates. While some exposures may be patched within days after being identified, others may exist for an extended period of time.

There are various means of doing so when assessing the risk posed by a vulnerability. It is possible to rank vulnerabilities by their severity, which gives administrators an idea about the prioritization process. If necessary, you can rank vulnerabilities according to how many computers they affect or whether or not they have been known for more than 90 days, among other attributes. Additionally, two vulnerabilities with similar characteristics may still pose different risks depending on what system they target and if they are found in commonly used programs.

Vulnerabilities need to be identified before any mitigating action is taken; however, that’s not all that has to be done to build up cyber security defenses. It is also possible to scan for vulnerabilities using tools for assessing cyber risks such as iTrust, which can check a company’s or organization’s systems and networks for known and unknown vulnerabilities.

  1. Get a Penetration Test

When creating a cyber risk management policy, there are many different aspects to consider, such as which regulatory standards apply to your company, what internal controls are recommended, and which key performance indicators should be monitored. 

Pen tests allow you to see where the vulnerabilities in your systems lie by identifying vulnerabilities, scanning for sensitive information, and identifying areas that could have been compromised already. Being aware of where the problems within your organization lay makes it much easier to fill security gaps and create a more secure business overall.

This knowledge is invaluable when creating a cyber risk management policy. Instead of relying on guesswork or anecdotes from employees affected by malware or ransomware infections, you will be armed with data from an independent third party. The results from a penetration test can help make informed decisions about which standards apply to your organization and how well prepared you are to defend against cyber attacks. It also provides knowledge that you cannot obtain any other way, such as the most effortless ways around your security systems and when specific vulnerabilities are most at risk of being exploited.

Penetration tests do not have to be expensive nor time-consuming either. Many companies are offering low-cost services with quick turnarounds so you can get the results you need quickly. The main thing to remember is that it is not a good idea to try and save money by performing your own security tests since they are challenging to do correctly without proper training. By hiring specialists who know how attacks occur, where vulnerabilities lie within your systems, and the optimal ways of exploiting them, you can make informed decisions about which steps should be taken next to improve cyber security overall.

The only way of truly understanding how vulnerable your company’s network environment is would be through an external source testing it for weaknesses. That ensures no conflicts of interest between the testers and what work has been completed beforehand. In addition, having a third-party organization verify any weaknesses within your network is a great way to prove to management and stakeholders that cyber security should not be taken lightly.

  1. Create a SLA

Create a service level agreement (SLA) to define the time needed to remediate vulnerabilities. Outlining specific deadlines and notification policies helps establish accountability for security personnel and provides metrics to measure performance. Additionally, SLAs ensure that all parties involved in vulnerability management communicate their needs and goals to effectively work together towards a common goal.

Creating an SLA also allows security professionals to prioritize which types of vulnerabilities require immediate attention. The risk scores assigned to each vulnerability will help determine the most serious, allowing cybersecurity teams to allocate resources efficiently.

An effective service level agreement should outline what is included in the standard time frame for remediation and include additional information regarding urgent or expedited requests. The agreement should also include the process of updating or renewing the service level agreement to ensure that it reflects current needs and growing threats, as well as any necessary changes in response time for urgent issues.

SLA also allows security professionals to communicate more effectively with other parties involved in vulnerability management, including third-party vendors, employees, and customers. By having all team members on the same page regarding timelines and expectations, they can avoid miscommunication that may lead to further complications down the road. Lastly, appending a SLA onto existing policies ensures that all security personnel are held accountable by enforcing consequences for missed deadlines or not meeting established standards.


Cyber Risk Management Policy helps identify security incidents that could occur based on incidents that have already happened and then create a plan to prevent and remediate those incidents. 


Best practices for creating a cyber risk management policy include:

  • Identifying potential risks
  • Prioritizing responses to different types of threats
  • Building plans for how the organization will respond in the case of a cyber-incident
  • Assigning accountability for ensuring that these plans are carried out

Cyber risk management policies need to be clear about who is responsible for different policy parts, when they are responsible, and what will happen if they do not carry out assigned tasks on time. The more specific a cyber risk management policy is, the easier it will be for employees to know precisely their responsibilities and whether they have carried out their tasks to an acceptable standard. A cyber risk management policy is vital because it provides clear steps for employees to follow when an incident does occur, so they know exactly how to handle it as quickly as possible.

Cost of a SOC Report

How Much Does SOC 2 Compliance Cost? 

Much has been said about the importance and advantages of SOC 2 compliance and less about its costs. This post provides an in-depth look into the typical expenses surrounding the entire process. It also outlines some practical hacks on how to save time, money, and other resources while you acquire a brand-enhancing and business-building SOC 2 audit report. 

SOC 2 Cost Factors 

For the uninitiated, the SOC 2 certification cycle might seem complex and time-consuming. Experienced compliance service providers can simplify and accelerate the process for you, but the rigorous nature of the SOC 2 framework will persist by design.  

The process essentially comprises four stages: scoping, gap assessment, remediation, and audit reporting. The costs related to those stages depend on several factors. These include the size and complexity of your organization; the scope and type of the audit; the remediation measures; and the service fees of qualified third-party assessors. 

Here is a breakdown of the common cost factors you will likely encounter:    

  1. Scope — This factor considers the scale and complexity of your business and specifies all the elements to be assessed and tested in the SOC audit. Naturally, a broader scope entails higher costs.  
  1. Size and complexity of the organization 
  1. Trust Services Criteria (TSC) to be included in the report in addition to Security (i.e., Availability, Processing Integrity, Confidentiality, or Privacy) 
  1. Report Type — This factor considers the audit report type your organization needs: 
  1. Type 1: A SOC 2 Type 1 report is a one-time audit that evaluates the organization’s controls at a specific point in time. This report type costs less and cycles faster. 
  1. Type 2: A SOC 2 Type 2 report is a more comprehensive audit that evaluates the organization’s controls over an extended period of time. This report type costs more and takes a longer period to complete.  
  1. Internal Resources — This factor refers to the aggregate investment in human resources, facilities, and other preparatory and administrative expenses that you allocate/dedicate for SOC 2 compliance. It may include staff time for data collection, auditor interviews, documentation, training, and other activities needed for audit completion.  
  1. Gap Assessment — This process thoroughly evaluates how your system and organization controls fare with the specific Trust Services Criteria (Security, Availability, Processing Integrity, Confidentiality, Privacy) you have decided to include in the audit report. An experienced third-party assessor can adopt a streamlined approach for risk analysis, control identification, testing, remediation planning, and reporting to speed up the process and reduce costs.  
  1. Remediation — This factor covers the expenses for all the activities needed to close the compliance gaps identified in a prior assessment. In some cases, a company just needs to create and implement new policies, procedures, or controls to address the uncovered risks and vulnerabilities, thereby incurring minimal costs. However, there might be instances where the acquisition of tools, software, services (such as cloud-based backup storage), or technologies (such as a new endpoint detection and response system) is necessary. 
  1. Auditor’s fees — This factor depends on the auditing firm’s experience and expertise, the physical location of your organization (for onsite visits and related expenses), the scope and type of audit you want, and added services.  

In summary, the overall cost of SOC 2 compliance covers preparations, the actual audit, and the continuous maintenance thereafter. 

TrustNet’s SOC 2 Compliance Pricing 

Trust is integral to our brand and how we work with clients. As such, all our relationships hinge on transparency and on consistently delivering the quality of service expected by internal and external stakeholders.  

That mantra also drives how we price our services.  

Our premium enterprise-grade solutions are designed for businesses of all sizes and across industries at very accessible price points. In addition to industry awards for our innovation programs, we have also been cited by our clients and leading cybersecurity media for delivering some of the best-value solutions on the market. That’s because we dislike hidden charges as much as the everyday consumer and tech buyer. As a result, every transaction with TrustNet is guaranteed to be transparent and cost-efficient.  

Moreover, you can request custom pricing based on the unique needs of your business. In our decades of industry experience, we have found that flexibility, transparency, and reliability are key to orchestrating the compliance outcomes our clients desire for their companies.  


SOC 2 Element/Phase 

Starting Cost 


SOC Accelerator Plus TM 

Gap Assessment 

US$ 20,000 

  1. Scoping 
  1. Project Management 
  1. Risk Assessment 
  1. Controls Identification 
  1. Testing and Analysis 
  1. Remediation Roadmap 
  1. Reporting 

SOC Remediation 

variable, depends on the nature and extent of compliance gap  

  1. Remediation Planning 
  1. Prioritizing 
  1. Policy and Procedures 
  1. Project Management 
  1. Expert Advice 

Type 1 Report (Audit) 


  1. Scoping 
  1. Project Management 
  1. Testing and Analysis 
  1. Reporting (SOC 2 Type 1) 

Type 2 Report (Audit) 


  1. Scoping 
  1. Project Management 
  1. Testing and Analysis 
  1. Reporting (SOC 2 Type 2) 

Advanced Compliance Platform 



(Only offered to complement  

audit and advisory services) 

  1. Compliance Operations Command Center (for 70+ frameworks) 
  1. Audit preparation jump starter 
  1. Automated regulatory workflows  
  1. Automated evidence collection 
  1. Streamlined audit collaboration 
  1. Automated control monitoring 
  1. Risk assessment and management 
  1. Reporting functions 
  1. Vendor management 

Full Compliance Cycle  

$40,000 for Type 1 Report 


$50,000 for Type 2 Report 

(All of the above) 


Tips for Reducing Costs 

The total cost of SOC 2 compliance typically ranges from a few thousand dollars to tens of thousands. Moreover, SOC 2 compliance is not a one-time expense because most companies need to re-certify their compliance yearly. That makes SOC 2 an ongoing strategic investment for your business to stay competitive and on par with regulatory standards.  

Here are some actionable tips for reducing the cost of SOC 2 compliance: 

  1. Choose the right partner. Work with an experienced and trusted SOC 2 assessor. Experienced auditors use streamlined processes and advanced technologies that can help you save time and money on achieving compliance. Choose qualified auditors knowledgeable about your industry and have served clients similar in size and line of business as your company. 
  1. Limit the scope of the audit. While it is commendable to include all five Trust Services Criteria in your audit, doing so will increase the cost and complexity of the process. Unless potential customers or investors require the inclusion of a specific TSC, you can limit the audit only to the criteria relevant to your business or industry. 
  1. Prepare for the audit. You can start by documenting your current controls and processes and performing a readiness self-assessment (preferably with an independent SOC 2 assessor). Identify compliance gaps, build a remediation roadmap, and start pre-audit remediation. Close the gaps by implementing the required controls (such as policies, procedures, and security measures).  
  1. Leverage technology. Use a GRC (Governance, Risk, and Compliance) management platform that works effectively for your organization. Such tools and software can help automate regulatory workflows and tedious auditing tasks such as control mapping and evidence collection.  
  1. Monitor and maintain. SOC 2 compliance is not a one-time event. For most businesses and industries, an annual re-certification is necessary. Ongoing compliance requires specialized tools, regular workforce training, and dedicated staff to monitor and maintain the required controls. The idea here is simple: keeping your systems compliant costs far less than belatedly remediating major gaps that arise due to neglect.  


SOC 2 compliance requires significant resources but yields long-term strategic benefits for your business. Enhanced customer trust, improved security posture, and expanded business opportunities are just some of the competitive advantages a SOC 2 certification can bring to the table.  

Understanding the cost factors associated with SOC 2 can help you budget accordingly and plan a successful attestation process. By planning and working with a trusted compliance assessor, you can ensure that benefits always outweigh costs by an exponential margin. Partnering with experienced assessors also helps prevent runaway costs, wasted efforts, and protracted timelines. 

The bottom line on SOC 2 costs is clear: there’s a best-value solution wherever you are in your compliance journey.  

Choose the gold standard in SOC 2 services. Request a Custom Quote for TrustNet to build a flexible SOC 2 program for your unique business needs.  




SOC 2 Type 1 vs Type 2

What’s the Difference Between Type 1 and Type 2 SOC 2 Reports? 

The SOC 2 (System and Organization Controls) framework helps build trust between organizations by assessing their internal controls for information security. This is primarily achieved through SOC 2 reports, independent audit documents that provide insight, evidence, and assurance on how well a company protects its clients’ sensitive data.  

There are two types of SOC 2 reports: Type 1 and Type 2. This article explores the key differences between Type 1 and Type 2 reports and gives guidance on which type to choose for your business needs.  

SOC 2 Report Fundamentals 

Based on standards set by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), a SOC 2 report documents an independent audit conducted by a qualified assessor. 

Core Principles 

SOC 2 reports evaluate how internal controls meet the objectives of relevant Trust Services Criteria (TSC). TSCs constitute the core principles upon which the SOC 2 framework was built: security, availability, processing integrity, confidentiality, and privacy. 


The process starts with a planning stage that defines the scope of the audit (specifically which report type the organization needs and which TSCs to include). The assessor then evaluates the design, implementation, and/or effectiveness of the organization’s internal controls against the selected criteria. Once relevant controls have been assessed, the auditor will issue a report — either Type 1 or 2 — that documents the process and provides an opinion on whether the company fully complies with SOC 2 standards.  


A SOC 2 report includes information about the report type, the scope of the audit, the organization’s internal controls, the results of the auditor’s tests, and the auditor’s opinion on whether the controls meet the criteria objectives.  

A SOC 2 report typically includes the following sections: 

  1. Auditor’s Report: This section includes the assessor’s opinion on whether internal controls meet the relevant trust services criteria. 
  1. Management Assertion: This section includes an assertion from the organization’s top leadership about the design and effectiveness of their internal controls.  
  1. System Description: This section describes the systems and controls in place to meet the relevant TSCs.  
  1. Description of Criteria: This section describes the TSCs used to evaluate the company’s internal controls.  
  1. Other Information (optional): This section may include additional information such as system changes during the audit period.  


SOC 2 reports provide the audited organization with several benefits including increased customer trust and confidence, improved compliance posture, reduced security risks, and competitive advantage. 

Other entities also derive value from SOC 2 reports: 

  • Customers use SOC 2 reports to assess the security and privacy of their data when processed by a third-party organization. 
  • Investors use SOC 2 reports to evaluate the risk of misstatements in an organization’s due diligence documents such as its financial statements. 
  • Regulators can use SOC 2 reports to assess the compliance of an organization with relevant laws and regulatory standards.  


There are two types of SOC 2 reports: Type 1 and Type 2. 

  1. A SOC 2 Type 1 report evaluates the design and implementation of internal controls at a specific point in time.  
  1. A SOC 2 Type 2 report evaluates the design, implementation, and operational effectiveness of internal controls over a given period.  

SOC 2 Type 1 Report 

A Type 1 report presents an auditor’s assessment of an organization’s systems and internal controls at a specific point in time. In particular, the report evaluates whether relevant internal controls are designed properly and whether they have been implemented correctly.  

Type 1 reports do not assess the operational effectiveness of internal controls (i.e., whether they have detected or prevented errors and unauthorized access). The primary focus is on whether relevant internal controls are in place at the specific audit date.  


  • Provides a snapshot of the design and implementation of internal controls at a specific point in time 
  • Relatively quicker to conduct/produce (duration typically ranges from a few weeks to a few months)   
  • Less expensive to obtain compared to Type 2 reports. 
  • Suitable for evaluating a company’s readiness and initial compliance efforts 
  • Can be used to demonstrate compliance with some industry regulations 


  • Does not provide assurance on the operating effectiveness of relevant internal controls.  
  • Might be inadequate for companies that need to demonstrate a high level of security and trustworthiness to potential clients, partners, or investors  
  • Limited acceptance by regulatory bodies 
  • Likelihood of missing compliance gaps and security weaknesses that may arise over time   

SOC 2 Type 2 Report  

A Type 2 report presents an auditor’s assessment of an organization’s systems and internal controls over a period of time. In particular, the report evaluates the design, implementation, and operational effectiveness of relevant internal controls based on the selected TSCs.  

Type 2 reports go beyond assuring whether controls are in place to also test whether these controls are effective at performing their expected functions (e.g., detect and prevent errors and unauthorized access), over an extended period of time.  


  • Presents a more accurate and comprehensive assessment of the company’s internal controls 
  • Provides greater assurance on the trustworthiness of the company’s information security systems 
  • Involves actual testing of relevant internal controls over an extended period of time (typically six to 12 months) 
  • Suitable for demonstrating a high level of security to customers, partners, and investors 
  • Provides the base document for a general-use SOC 3 report, which can be a powerful marketing tool  


  • Relatively more expensive to obtain 
  • May not be suitable (i.e., overkill) for organizations that do not need to demonstrate a high level of security to internal and external stakeholders 
  • Requires a longer engagement period with a qualified auditor (takes at least six months to more than a year to complete) 

Conclusion and Final Tips 

SOC 2 reports serve as widely accepted proof organizations can use to demonstrate trustworthiness, security, and due diligence to customers, partners, and investors.  

By understanding the differences between Type 1 and Type 2 reports, you can make informed decisions about which type meets your needs and your stakeholders’ expectations.  

The type of SOC 2 report your company should acquire depends on many factors: 

  1. Your company’s industry, line of business, and regulatory environment. 
  1. Your company’s risk tolerance. 
  1. Your company’s timeline. 
  1. Your company’s budget. 
  1. The specific requirements of your internal and external stakeholders.  

Ultimately, the decision depends on your goals, budget, and schedule. While Type 1 reports may be faster and less costly to complete, Type 2 reports deliver a more compelling assurance to your stakeholders. All things considered; a Type 2 report delivers a more valuable set of benefits that far outweighs costs.  

Here are some final tips that can help you achieve better SOC 2 compliance outcomes: 

  1. Brainstorm to determine your compliance goals. 
  1. Choose an experienced auditor with proven expertise in your line of business.  
  1. Provide adequate documentation about your internal controls. 
  1. Implement remedial recommendations to the best of your ability. 
  1. Practice due diligence before, during, and after the audit.  

The delivery of SOC 2 reports can be accelerated in a cost-efficient manner. But that entails specialized human skills and advanced technologies only a few experienced providers can deliver.  

Call an expert for a free consultation on how best to customize a SOC 2 program for your specific line of business and unique compliance needs.  





  HITRUST and SOC 2 are two widely recognized compliance frameworks that companies can use to build trust and demonstrate their commitment to information security. Both frameworks share similar goals and requirements but have a few significant differences.  

If your organization is weighing which framework meets your business needs better, here’s a comprehensive guide to help you make a smart decision.  

SOC 2 and HITRUST Essentials 

SOC 2 (Service Organization Control 2) is an auditing framework developed by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) for evaluating a company’s internal controls related to five trust services criteria (TSC): security, availability, processing integrity, confidentiality, and privacy. Through a SOC 2 report prepared by an independent auditor, the framework provides a detailed assessment of how well a company safeguards customer data.  

The HITRUST CSF (Common Security Framework) is a unified set of standards originally developed by healthcare organizations and security experts to harmonize the compliance needs of the healthcare industry. It has since been expanded to cover all industries by integrating other regulations, frameworks, and best practices. Now functioning as a cross-industry brand, the term HITRUST was originally the acronym for Health Information Trust Alliance.  

Key Differences 

Both the SOC 2 and HITRUST framework are used to assess and improve the security of an organization’s information systems. But these are the factors where they differ:  

  1. Engagement output. The main difference between SOC 2 and HITRUST lies in their final output document. A SOC 2 engagement results in an attestation report containing an independent auditor’s opinion. On the other hand, a HITRUST engagement results in a certification issued by a HITRUST-authorized assessor. Typically, HITRUST certifications remain valid for two years while SOC 2 reports need to be refreshed every year. A certification is a more potent form of assurance than an independent attestation (opinion).  
  1. Number of control requirements. SOC 2 focuses on controls related to five trust services criteria. HITRUST covers SOC 2 controls plus additional requirements and standards from other frameworks such as the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) cybersecurity framework, COBIT (Control objectives for Information Technologies), and International Standards Organization (ISO) 27001. As a result, HITRUST sets far more controls compared to SOC 2 and is the more rigorous compliance framework. 
  1. Related Costs. HITRUST certification typically costs more compared to obtaining a SOC 2 report.  
  1. Timeline. The HITRUST compliance cycle typically takes longer to complete compared to SOC 2.  
  1. Complexity/Ease of compliance. SOC 2 reports are relatively easier to obtain compared to HITRUST in terms of timeline, budget, and challenge level.  
  1. Industry acceptance and recognition. SOC 2 is a well-established framework more widely recognized by businesses and their customers. HITRUST originally focused on the healthcare sector but has since covered all industries. While SOC 2 is more popular, HITRUST is the preferred assurance framework in high-risk sectors such as finance and healthcare. 
  1. Alignment and correspondence with other frameworks. By design, HITRUST aligns well and more comprehensively with other frameworks and regulations such as HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) and PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard) compared to SOC 2.  

Factors to Consider 

Based on the key differences cited above, here are some ballpark conclusions you can make: 

  • SOC 2 is a good option for companies that prefer a relatively simpler, faster, and more affordable method of providing assurance to internal and external stakeholders. 
  • HITRUST is a valuable option for companies in highly regulated industries, and for organizations that require a more strident approach to compliance.  
  • While SOC 2 is the older and more widely recognized framework, HITRUST is gaining in popularity.  

Can you have both? 

Yes. Experienced and duly accredited assessors can deliver the holy grail: SOC 2 + HITRUST CSF.  

For companies that proactively set higher standards of data protection and privacy, combining the two frameworks in one audit engagement can be a valuable option. Such engagements yield significant time efficiencies and cost savings, and this is made possible due to the high level of correspondence between HITRUST’s Common Security Framework AICPA’s Trust Services Criteria.  

The only caveat is that you carefully choose which assessor to work with. Ensure the external auditor is authorized by HITRUST and accredited by AICPA.  

Final Takeaways 

SOC 2 and HITRUST are both valuable frameworks for building trust in your brand and protecting your customers’ data. Determining which framework works best for you depends on your company’s line of business, commitment to information security, and the specific requirements of your internal and external stakeholders.  

Implementing either framework requires careful planning, prudent resource allocation, and a smart approach to maintaining compliance. Engaging experts and specialists early on can help you make informed decisions.  

Whichever option you consider, it is crucial to work with a highly experienced audit team. Experienced assessors provide practical insights that can accelerate the compliance cycle, reduce costs, and improve business outcomes.  

Talk to an expert for a free consultation.  


SOC Readiness Assessment

Increasingly, customers and partners are demanding SOC 2 certification as a prerequisite for conducting business. This certification ensures that a company adheres to best practices in information security and meets industry standards. 

However, SOC 2 can be complex and expensive, particularly for companies in need of expert guidance. The most effective approach to prepare, reduce costs, and navigate SOC 2 is to embark on the journey with a readiness assessment conducted by an independent auditor. Let’s take an expert-guided walkthrough of the process. 

Essential Knowledge about SOC 2 

SOC 2 (Systems and Organization Controls 2) is a widely recognized framework for auditing and demonstrating the effectiveness of an organization’s internal controls over its information systems. It is built upon five core principles: security, availability, processing integrity, confidentiality, and privacy. These principles serve as the foundation for the framework’s Trust Services Criteria (TSC) categories.  

Any organization that handles sensitive data may require SOC 2 certification. SOC 2 compliance provides numerous benefits, including enhanced customer trust, regulatory compliance, improved security posture, and expanded market opportunities. Independent auditors issue SOC 2 reports, assuring customers, partners, and stakeholders that a company has implemented appropriate controls to safeguard data. Readiness assessments play a critical role in obtaining favorable SOC 2 reports. 

Understanding SOC 2 Readiness Assessment 

A SOC 2 Readiness Assessment thoroughly evaluates an organization’s internal controls, encompassing procedures, policies, and other measures in place to protect information. This assessment is a vital step in the SOC 2 compliance process, as it helps companies identify gaps and address weaknesses in their adherence to TSC standards. Readiness assessments are conducted before the formal SOC 2 audit, allowing companies to proactively assess their overall readiness and ensure the issuance of a positive SOC 2 Report, indicating the auditor’s unqualified opinion on compliance. While an in-house team can conduct assessments, hiring accredited third-party auditors offers an unbiased perspective, rigorous scrutiny, streamlined workflows, and expertise. Moreover, experienced third-party assessments often include a remediation planning stage where stakeholders collaborate to develop a cost-effective roadmap towards full compliance. 

Process Overview 

A SOC 2 Readiness Assessment typically involves the following processes and activities: 

  1. Scoping and Planning: Determine the specific Trust Services Criteria, systems, processes, and internal controls to be included in the assessment. Identify key stakeholders, establish timelines and milestones, and request documentation. 
  1. Documentation and Evidence Gathering: Maintain diligent documentation throughout the process. Collect evidence on the maturity and effectiveness of in-scope controls to demonstrate compliance. 
  1. Gap Analysis: Review existing controls such as policies and procedures and evaluate them against the relevant TSC requirements. Identify gaps and weaknesses and determine areas for improvement. 
  1. Risk Assessment: Identify potential threats, vulnerabilities, and risks to the company’s information systems. Develop a corresponding risk mitigation strategy. 
  1. Remediation Planning: Create a compliance roadmap to address identified weaknesses and gaps. Prioritize efforts and allocate resources based on the severity of risks. Implement controls to close gaps and improve overall readiness. 
  1. Testing and Validation: Conduct tests to evaluate the effectiveness of existing and newly implemented controls. 
  1. IT Security Awareness Training: Provide staff training to enhance cyber resilience, establish accountability, and maintain compliance. 
  1. Reporting: Develop a comprehensive readiness document that reports on the company’s current state, outlines completed remediation efforts, and provides recommendations for further improvement. 

The Importance of Readiness Assessment for SOC 2 Success 

SOC 2 is widely recognized as one of the most rigorous information security frameworks globally. Attempting to undergo a SOC 2 audit without a readiness assessment is likely to result in numerous audit exceptions and, ultimately, SOC 2 failure. A readiness assessment is crucial as it allows companies to proactively identify and address gaps before the official audit begins. By identifying and prioritizing areas for improvement early on, a readiness assessment helps allocate resources efficiently and manage compliance efforts effectively.  

In contrast, proceeding without a readiness assessment may force your team to address issues retroactively during the audit, leading to significant costs and unnecessary stress. Furthermore, a readiness assessment helps organizations develop a strong understanding of the SOC 2 framework, instilling the confidence needed to undergo a formal audit and maintain continuous compliance in the long run. 

SOC 2 Readiness Assessment Costs 

The cost of the SOC 2 readiness assessment varies based on factors such as company size, complexity, location, and the specific Trust Services Criteria included in the assessment scope. Auditor fees also vary based on their expertise, toolsets, and methodologies. Typically, a readiness assessment starts at around $20,000, covering services such as scoping, risk assessment, testing and analysis, and remediation planning. 

Preparation Tips for SOC 2 Readiness Assessment: Years of experience serving clients of all sizes and industries have allowed us to gather and analyze extensive real-world data on streamlining the SOC 2 compliance process. Here are best practices for readiness assessments that consistently yield positive outcomes: 

  • Start early: The compliance journey can span several months, so closing gaps with standards as soon as possible is beneficial for your budget and timeline. 
  • Familiarize yourself with the Trust Services Criteria: Developing a basic understanding of the framework will greatly aid your readiness assessment. SOC 2 is a comprehensive auditing framework that encompasses your information system, including your workforce, physical security controls, data backups, and business continuity plans. 
  • Obtain buy-in from top leadership: Ensuring adequate resources are allocated for compliance becomes easier with support from senior management. 
  • Document all internal controls: Third-party auditors will require your policies, procedures, and other relevant documents. 
  • Validate your controls: Engage a third-party provider to conduct vulnerability scans and penetration testing on your systems, uncovering any weaknesses in information handling. 
  • Engage trusted experts: Consider partnering with experienced assessors who can guide you through each stage of the assessment process. Their expertise will provide practical insights and simplify the process for you.  

Final takeaways 

Complying with SOC 2 is a proven method for building trust, enhancing security, and expanding your business. It strengthens corporate governance, vendor relationships, regulatory oversight, and customer loyalty.  

These compelling benefits warrant investment, and one of the most effective ways to begin is with an independent readiness assessment. SOC 2 is a strategic investment that delivers long-term advantages for your business, and it all starts with a readiness assessment.  

Talk to a trusted expert for a free consultation. 

SOC 1 Audit Checklist

SOC stands for System and Organization Controls, a widely recognized auditing framework that evaluates the effectiveness of a company’s internal controls over its information systems. Produced after a formal audit by a duly accredited accounting firm or professional, SOC reports are categorized into three main types. A SOC 1 audit focuses on financial reporting.  

Organizations that process payments or provide services that impact the financial statements of their clients typically need to acquire SOC 1 reports to assure customers of the reliability of their financial reporting systems. Aside from building confidence in your brand, SOC 1 compliance also helps reduce financial reporting errors, drive alignment with industry regulations, and expand your market reach.  

Here’s a SOC 1 audit checklist and some practical tips on how your company can simplify SOC 1 compliance.  

What to Expect in a SOC 1 Audit 

A SOC 1 audit is a rigorous process where an independent assessor examines your policies, procedures, and systems to validate the effectiveness of your internal controls. Expect the following engagements and milestones during such an audit:  

  1. The auditor will meet your compliance team to discuss the scope of the audit.  
  1. The auditor will review your policies, procedures, and system documentation.  
  1. The auditor will interview officers, staff, and other stakeholders relevant to the internal controls being assessed.  
  1. The auditor will test your internal controls to validate their effectiveness.  
  1. The auditor will produce a report that details the audit process and includes an opinion on whether your internal controls comply with SOC 1 standards.  

SOC 1 Audit Checklist 

Take time to complete an audit requirements checklist. This will significantly organize and streamline your efforts in gathering evidence and providing documentation for the independent auditor. 

A SOC 1 audit typically covers the following areas of your organization: 

  • Internal controls over financial reporting  
  • Policies and procedures 
  • Physical and logical access controls over your information systems 
  • Data backup and recovery 
  • Business continuity plan 
  • Monitoring activities 
  • Vendor management 

The SSAE 18 (Statement on Standards for Attestation Engagements 18) published by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) provides details that your compliance team can use as a more precise and comprehensive checklist for assessing the adequacy of your internal controls. Obtain a copy of the SSAE 18 document and review the requirements, preferably with an experienced auditor. This will give you a fair understanding of the control objectives you need to meet to achieve SOC 1 compliance. 

Here are some guide questions related to the checklist:  

  • Is the organizational structure of your company clearly defined?  
  • Have you delegated the responsibility of developing policies and procedures to specific employees? 
  • What are the physical and logical controls that you have implemented? 
  • Are there procedures in place to manage change in a timely and effective manner? 
  • How do you conduct background checks on employees?  
  • What are your standards for employee conduct?  
  • How do stakeholders learn and understand how to use your systems? 
  • Have you identified areas where your internal controls are ineffective? 
  • Does your company regularly assess vendors? 
  • Does your company conduct an annual review of your policies and procedures to keep them updated?  
  • Have you performed a formal risk assessment to detect and address potential threats to your systems?  

Final Takeaways 

Diligent preparation is key to a successful SOC 1 engagement and an audit checklist is your primary tool for navigating the process. It will help you understand the framework’s requirements and map the controls you have implemented to meet standards.  

Use the audit process as an opportunity to proactively improve relevant areas of your business, especially those that affect the trust of your customers, partners, and other stakeholders. Lastly, engage an experienced auditor to help you streamline the process, reduce the cost of compliance, and ensure a favorable SOC 1 report.  

SOC 1 can be simplified and tailored to your unique needs. Talk to our expert for a free consultation.  

SOC 2 Compliance

Unlocking Trust: A SOC 2 Compliance Overview 

SOC 2 (System and Organization Controls 2) is an auditing framework that specifies how organizations should safeguard data across five key criteria: security, availability, processing integrity, confidentiality, and privacy. Developed by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), SOC 2 is a widely recognized voluntary standard that has become best practice for building trust among businesses, customers, and third-party entities.  

SOC 2 Key Principles 

SOC 2 helps organizations demonstrate to clients, partners, and regulators that they have implemented appropriate controls to protect sensitive information. These controls safeguard information systems based on the framework’s five core principles called the Trust Services Criteria (TSC): 

  1. Security: This core principle refers to the protection of information against unauthorized access, removal, modification, or disclosure. As the most crucial principle, Security is a mandatory TSC in every SOC 2 audit. All others are optional, based on your line of business or desired audit report.  
  1. Availability: This core principle focuses on the unhindered accessibility of data to authorized entities within expected conditions or agreed service levels.  
  1. Processing Integrity: This principle helps check whether an organization has adequate controls to ensure that data is processed accurately, timely, completely, and with proper authorization. 
  1. Confidentiality: This core principle helps validate whether controls are in place to prevent unauthorized access to confidential information.  
  1. Privacy: This core principle helps check whether controls are in place to safeguard the privacy of customer data and covers policies on the collection, use, retention, sharing, and disposal of personal information.  

Benefits of SOC 2 Compliance 

An organization must undergo a rigorous process (typically consisting of gap assessments, security improvements, control tests, and third-party audits) to achieve SOC 2 compliance. 

It’s well worth the effort. After such a process and a formal attestation of compliance, an organization almost always reaps significant benefits:  

  • Seal of trust. SOC 2 compliance demonstrates your commitment to data protection, helping build trust, loyalty, and confidence in your brand. A genuine SOC 2 logo from AICPA on your website or company profile proves your transparency and trustworthiness in safeguarding customer information.  
  • Improved security. The SOC 2 certification process includes a remediation phase where uncovered system weaknesses and vulnerabilities are addressed. This can be achieved by implementing stronger security controls, adopting smarter protective technologies, or upgrading outdated and risky business processes. As a result, an organization’s security posture generally gets a significant improvement over its pre-audit condition. Among other things, such improvements proactively address risks and help safeguard your organization from cyber threats such as phishing and data breaches.  
  • Improved operational efficiencies. Compliance with SOC 2 standards requires adequate security controls, streamlined processes, and industry best practices. Upon implementation, these can lead to an overall improvement in operational efficiencies. Partnering with experienced external assessors also involves sharing technical expertise and strategic insight. Such advice can potentially move the needle on business performance.  
  • Accelerated compliance with other regulatory frameworks. The standards set by different security frameworks often overlap. SOC 2 aligns well with other widely recognized regulatory standards such as GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation), SOX (Sarbanes-Oxley Act), and HITRUST CSF (Common Security Framework). While there is no one-to-one correspondence, compliance with SOC 2 makes it easier, faster, and less costly to comply with other frameworks.  
  • Competitive advantage. SOC 2 compliance helps improve business relationships by establishing trust and transparency with internal and external stakeholders. As a brand differentiator, SOC 2 compliance can help your organization expand its market, generate new funding, and grow revenue by tapping clients, investors, and partners that set strident security standards and recognized certifications as a mandatory requirement for doing business.  

How to achieve SOC 2 Compliance 

Because SOC 2 is a rigorous framework, compliance with its standards requires considerable investment in time, money, and effort.  

Planning solves many related challenges. Better yet, working with experienced assessors enables your team to build a cost-effective compliance plan. Such a plan can help you prevent runaway costs, wasted efforts, and protracted timelines.  

In essence, the SOC 2 compliance process comprises four stages: 

  1. Scoping — decide which SOC 2 report type and trust services criteria (in addition to security) your company needs based on your line of business and your customers’ specific requirements. 
  1. Readiness Assessment — detect gaps in documentation, procedures, technical tools, system configurations, and audit trail. 
  1. Remediation — close gaps by building and implementing a remediation plan. 
  1. Reporting — undergo a SOC 2 Audit with a qualified third-party assessor to test your organization’s security controls and produce a report on their findings  
  1. Type 1 report: provides a snapshot (i.e., design and implementation) of your organizational controls at a specific point in time. This report type is straightforward with a shorter timeline.  
  1. Type 2 report: provides a long-term assessment (i.e., design, implementation, and effectiveness) of your organizational controls over a given period. This report type offers greater assurance to internal and external stakeholders but comes at a higher cost and with a longer timeline.  

Final Tips 

SOC 2 is a valuable method for your company to build trust, improve security, and grow your business. Compliance with this framework enhances your corporate governance, vendor management programs, and regulatory oversight. For many prospective clients, partners, and investors, SOC 2 compliance also demonstrates operational excellence and due diligence over the handling of sensitive data.  

But while it can help differentiate your brand and drive compliance with other standards, SOC 2 can be complicated, time-consuming, and exacting to monitor and maintain. It is not a one-time event but an essential best practice that helps keep your operations aligned with industry standards. 

Choosing the right tools (such as compliance management platforms) and partners (such as experienced SOC 2 auditors) can help you achieve and maintain SOC 2 compliance more smoothly and cost-efficiently.  

SOC 2 compliance begins with a readiness assessment.  

Talk to a trusted expert to start your journey.  




SDLC Policy: Everything You Need to Know

SDLC stands for software development lifecycle. Software development lifecycle is a set of steps that a project must go through from beginning to end and refers to the entire process of getting a software product completed and out on the market. There are different software development life cycle models, but they all share certain stages such as initiation, design, prototyping, testing, and implementation, among others.

What is Software Development Lifecycle Policy?

SDLC policy is a set of rules and procedures that guide the steps in the software development process. It regulates the parameters for what needs to be achieved and when it must be done, who should be involved, as well as what tools and technologies are required.

The purpose of the software development lifecycle policy is to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of your development process so that you can build high-quality software more quickly. It will help your company save money in the long run because it won’t have to pay developers for their time or spend extra cash on bug testing, etc.

This policy ensures everyone follows the same system and has access to all relevant information when developing an app or program. This way, the process is more efficient and less prone to mistakes because a lot of data is gathered together in one place. By having a policy in place, developers can have a better understanding of what they need to do before beginning any work on a project. You should update the SDLC policy periodically as new strategies are developed so that the document becomes as accurate as possible. It should also be updated as technology changes or as you introduce new team members to become useful for those joining your company.

What does SDLC policy cover?

SDLC policy documents vary depending on the company. Still, they typically include structuring projects, planning, scheduling, managing resources (workers), reporting progress (metrics), and supporting the development process. It’s not uncommon for companies to come up with their own policies to suit their specific situation.

It is vital that your company’s software development lifecycle policy covers each step of the process and lists any parameters that are relevant to the work being done. For example, suppose you are developing a website. In that case, it will include how often you should make code updates, what permissions are needed to access certain pages, how many failed login attempts are allowed before the account is locked, etc.

The SDLC policy also needs to specify who is responsible for overseeing the different steps in the process. The organization may have separate teams for different stages of development, or it could be one person who manages all aspects of development.

Companies that have their own policies for managing the software development lifecycle typically implement them as a way to enforce company-wide best practices. A firm software development lifecycle policy can help your organization meet its goals and stay within budget and on schedule while avoiding common pitfalls such as lost data and delayed completion due to poor communication.

Why Have an SDLC Policy? 

An SDLC policy helps to prevent inconsistencies, which could lead to bugs or security issues. It also puts all team members on the same page by clearly stating how they should do things. The policy serves as a living document that can be updated if needed. 

The underlying purpose of all software development lifecycle policies is to support your company’s goals and make sure everything runs smoothly. Employee productivity should always come first, but it can be challenging to focus on the task at hand without clear guidelines. An SDLC policy will help establish a relationship between each stage of the development process and the completion of necessary tasks that employees must carry out to meet deadlines on time.

Suppose your company is taking an agile approach (i.e., breaking down projects into small parts that can be completed quickly). In that case, it should have a clear policy for how each piece will get finished and the roles involved, so everyone has a general idea of what they’re working toward.

The 5 Most Important Elements of a Successful SDLC

There are many components of an SDLC policy, but there are five essential parts:

  • purpose;
  • requirements for software development;
  • design standards;
  • development standards;
  • the potential for new policies in the future.

If you’re creating a new policy, these components will help you develop solid guidelines for yourself and your employees.

The purpose is an apparent, concise reason for having a policy and should be written before determining the other parts. For example, “The purpose of this SDLC policy document is to provide guidelines that will help us produce high-quality software products that meet both our customers’ needs and expectations.” This part of the policy gives your employees context as to why you have it in the first place.

Requirements for software development include what must be included in apps or programs being developed by anyone who follows this rulebook. That also makes it easy to communicate with those developing apps or programs, so they don’t miss anything important. If you’re creating a new app yourself without using a template, these requirements are the pre-made specifications you’ll need to include.

Design standards are all about how an app or program should look when it’s being created. When creating design standards, you have to think about what your target audience will be using this app for and give them a user-friendly screen that pops out at them. For example, if you’re trying to make a game for kids 4-12 years old, your design needs to match that demographic – meaning bright colors, easy shapes/fonts/pictures to understand what’s going on, etc.

Development standards are all about how an app or program will function once it is finished. These are more complicated than design standards because you have to consider every possible error your employees could encounter when making this app or program. For example, if you’re creating a game, your development standards might include creating an error page that pops up if a user tries to click the “play” button while their Internet browser is down.

The potential for new policies in the future is a brief section of your policy that will inform employees what they should do if a new policy emerges from management. This part ensures everyone knows how to handle these types of situations properly and keeps them from panicking over it.

There are many components of SDLC policy that need to be considered. However, these five essential parts will get the job done well enough until you need more specific guidelines set out by yourself or other management.