Few business owners would argue against the merits of a financial audit. For business expansion, senior management must be aware of the accounts and know what money is coming into the company and what is going out.
But it isn’t just the finances that need careful, regular auditing. Technology audits should be a central part of your business strategy to stay abreast of the latest technologies and find out how you can increase productivity and reduce spending as your company scales up.
These are the 5 key areas that should be of interest in any technology audit. For more information and a deeper look at how technology auditing can benefit your business, head to Preactive IT Solutions.
Cybersecurity audits have often focussed on regulatory compliance however, small and medium-sized businesses are increasingly becoming the targets of cybercriminals who use them as a backdoor entrance to larger firms.
An exploration of the cybersecurity products, markets, contracts, and risks should be a key part of a technology audit, as well as ensuring a culture of awareness and understanding of cybersecurity risks is present company-wide.
Software Asset Management
Reducing license-relating expenses and improving software asset efficiency is a key way to keeping technology costs down. Each technology audit should identify any instances of overbuying, licensing liabilities and risk, reducing labour intensive processes through software adoption, and software contract management.
Data and Analytics
Today’s data analytic methods allow firms to perform tests and test control models across the entire consumer population. By ensuring your firm is running the very latest data analytic techniques, you can effectively reduce fraud, waste, regulatory non-compliance, and improve risk assessment.
The latest cloud technology is providing businesses with better risk management opportunities and improved data storage practices. Private, public, and hybrid models of cloud services should all be thoroughly audited regularly, including the assurances negotiated with the cloud provider, the mechanism for cloud design, and execution.
Network configuration, asset control and protection, logging, and monitoring should all be explored in a thorough technology audit, as should the cloud platform’s incident response capabilities and the processes for a data breach. You may also want to consider a provider’s geographical location in the event of a natural disaster or loss of data due to an external factor.
Social media elements allow companies to communicate directly with consumers and potential leads and are an integral way to advance the brand. However, legal and regulatory risks are an an-ever present threat.
Your technological audit should consider the threats posed by employees use of social media, hacked social media accounts, fake social media accounts damaging your brand, and archiving practices. Mitigating risks and improving efficiency and compliance in these areas should be a priority.
A comprehensive technology audit with a particular focus on these five areas will ensure threats, technological disruption and areas of reduced regulatory compliance are swiftly identified and strengthened. It will also allow for the streamlining of expenses, boosted efficiency and productivity, and the opportunity to leverage the most value from the IT resources available.