2023 SOX Compliance: Essential Business InsightsAugust 14, 2023
SOX imposes strict requirements for auditing, logging, and monitoring internal controls to ensure transparency and accuracy in financial reporting. It also mandates organizations to establish and maintain a data security policy that safeguards the storage and use of financial information. This policy must be consistently implemented and clearly communicated to all employees.
In simpler terms, SOX poses several questions:
- Where is your sensitive data stored?
- Who has access to that data?
- Why are they accessing it, and what actions can they perform with it?
- Can your organization detect suspicious activities and promptly address them?
To comply with SOX, companies must create and maintain documentation that provides evidence of the existence, communication, and effectiveness of controls. Manual compliance can be overwhelming, which is why firms require auditing and monitoring tools that offer three critical capabilities for their financial systems:
1. Effective enforcement of Segregation of Duties (SoD) policies
In today’s interconnected business landscape, understanding how tasks interact across various cloud, on-premises, and hybrid systems can be challenging. Legacy Governance, Risk, and Compliance (GRC) systems often lack the capability to assess access across applications. This deficiency means that a sensitive transaction spanning multiple systems might go unnoticed.
Systems like 1Trooper offer fine-grained access controls, going beyond entitlement levels. They leverage object-level security data to enable comprehensive risk analysis, eliminating false positives and false negatives in SoD analysis.
2. Automatic logging and data tracking tools
SOX requires organizations to maintain an audit trail of all access and activity related to sensitive business information. Older systems may lack advanced access tracking capabilities needed to identify the root cause of a problem or prevent its recurrence.
1Trooper assists organizations in tracking and monitoring changes to transactions, parameters, settings, and master data. It provides information about who made the changes, before and after values, and other metadata, facilitating the evaluation of change appropriateness.
3. Centralized administration of identity governance and access controls
SOX compliance is a complex task that necessitates a comprehensive understanding of the entire business application ecosystem. Manual processes prone to human error and requiring substantial manpower should be eliminated, along with disparate tools that do not integrate across systems.
1Trooper helps organizations obtain a holistic view of user identities and their access, from enterprise-wide roles to specific permissions. It highlights high-risk areas and automates audit and compliance procedures, streamlining the effort required to demonstrate controls. The platform offers business-friendly workflows that are fully documented and ready for auditing.
By leveraging tools like 1Trooper, organizations can meet the critical requirements of SOX while reducing manual effort and ensuring compliance with the necessary controls.