IT Operations Management for Cloud SOX Compliance Requirements

IT Operations Management for Cloud SOX Compliance Requirements

Before hosting your critical data and accounting systems in the cloud, there are a few key considerations to evaluate about the cloud provider’s IT operations regarding compliance with the Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) Act of 2002.  In this post we will look closely at IT Operations Management Requirements for SOX Cloud and answer the question: Why Should I care about SOX if I’m not public?

You can learn more in-depth info into SOX controls for cloud from this eBook on SOX Compliance Requirements.

dynamics cloud it operations management sox compliance requirements

Internal control policies and procedures ensure that a cloud provider’s IT staff is maintaining the appropriate documentation for SOX compliance and undergoing regular training to stay current with IT trends and developments. Hosting providers that are committed to SOX compliance will have their internal controls documented in written policies which can be made accessible to customers and auditors for review.

IT operations are one of the 5 critical areas that require robust controls from your provider for SOX compliant cloud. The five areas include…

The 5 Critical Controls for SOX ERP in the Cloud

In order to truly deliver SOX compliant cloud services and infrastructure, a cloud provider must have standardized and documented policies for…

  1. Change Management Plan and Policies
  2. Logical Access Controls
  3. Physical Security Policy
  4. IT Operations Management
  5. Enterprise Cloud Backup & Recovery

You can learn about SOX change policies in this article on Change Management for SOX Cloud Compliance. Now let’s dive into the fourth item on the list…

IT Operations Management Requirements for SOX in the Cloud

IT operations controls should be frequently tested by the hosting provider to ensure compliance, and some important questions to ask your cloud provider include…

  • What controls are in place internally among the hoster’s staff to assure that application maintenance remains current and SOX policies are upheld?
  • Who has access to the system and how is access traced, documented and reviewed?
  • How is accountability for customer support requests tracked among the hosting firm’s internal IT staff?
  • What are the hosting firm’s policies around scheduled downtime and notification?

In order to assure their internal IT operations management policies are meeting SOX requirements, hosting firm RoseASP offers…

  • 24/7/365 Customer support
  • Strict controls around accessing customer data, audit traceability and documentation
  • System monitoring, intrusion detection and customer notification of security events
  • Standardized policy for tracking and responding to service requests
  • High standards of expertise in cloud, accounting and compliance

Why should I care about SOX, I’m not public?

78% of businesses that adhere to SOX apply their compliance practices see an improvement of all business processes that impact financial reporting (an 18 percent increase over the previous year), according a recent Protiviti report.

Even if you are not a public organization, SOX compliant policies and protocols regarding your financial system are a set of best practices that will reduce your risk of financial errors, fraud and breaches.

“Compliance remains dynamic and complicated to master for most companies,” said Brian Christensen with audit firm Protiviti in the report.

Choosing a provider based on their ability to provide controls for SOX compliance and help you streamline your auditing process can help save time, money and headaches.

Satisfying SOX objectives now will ensure the integrity of your financial reports as you move toward a potential initial public offering down the road.  SOX compliance will also help you gain the confidence of underwriters and potential investors.

Did you know..?

If you are a publicly traded company with a Dynamics ERP system, you can upgrade to the newest version in the cloud without sacrificing governance, risk management and compliance requirements.  Check out this Microsoft Dynamics SOX Compliance Solutions Page.

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