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What is an IT security audit and how to do it?

What is an IT security audit and how to do it?

All organisations handling data need to undergo an IT security audit. The potential risk of a data breach might require them to update the cyber-security details of their organisation. Moreover, with the changing dynamics of cyber-security with time, any technology can be outdated very soon. Thus, a periodical check of the security system is necessary.

There are three types of IT security audit:

  • Physical audit: It involves the physical assessment of the effectiveness of the current measures of security.
  • Technical audit: A look into the technical nuances of the cybersecurity of the organisation to check for loopholes in the system.
  • Administrative audit: The section of the audit deals with the administrative function of information security is an audit in this kind of audit.

To be specific, when the information security audit has more focus on the IT part of it, such an audit is called an IT security audit.

Why is an IT security audit needed?

Understanding the dynamism in terms of the potential threat to your organisation is important. Moreover, a single loophole might lead to a bigger threat to your organisation. Though the IT security audit cost might sound a bit on the higher end, they provide tremendous benefits.

Primary Reasons:

Some of the primary reasons why an IT security audit must be in your checklist are:

Risk identification

  •  If you are not an expert in technology and network security, you might not be able to find the risk associated. Since the exposure of the risk might be huge, the lack of an audit will stop you from understanding it. An audit helps in the identification of the risk and taking necessary actions for the same.

Keeping up to date 

  • As the change in the world of cybersecurity is very fast, hence staying up to date is the key. Further, efficient cybersecurity measures turn inefficient over a period of time. What may have worked earlier might fail to secure you at all now. Security can’t be stagnant. It’s an ever-evolving process. There’s no other way than to keep up with it.

Volumes of confidential data

  •  Organisations have volumes of confidential data with them. They could be payment details of the customers, contact details, and many more. Under such situations, any attack on their server could lead to a compromise of all the important data. Moreover, it could expose the organisations to volumes of litigations; which will eventually harm the reputation of the organisation.

Additional endpoints

  • Every time you add new hardware to the system, you end up creating a new endpoint. Configuration of these new endpoints is a must to protect the database of records and information. Thus, the audit of the security is essential to configure such endpoints periodically.

Long term benefit 

  • For any organisation, its customers should be the pillar of success. Giving the rich customer experience helps them to defeat their competitors, hands down. This is where consistent audits play an important role. They help the organisation to develop a security model, which can give its customers a rich experience, thus driving them from their competitors.

How to conduct an IT security audit?

IT security audits multi-faceted. Covering each aspect of a system with flawless meticulousness is the only way you can get great results. These facets can be thought of as parts of an IT security audit. They include: 

Identification of the devices

  • Knowing the devices which are present on your system and connected to the network is very important. This helps in the identification of the threat from within the device, in the first place itself.

Reviewing the company’s IT policy

  • It is essential to review the security policy of the company. The mismatch between the security standards of the company and the accepted nomenclature can create problems in the longer term. This step helps to remove such mismatch and make the security network more robust.

Knowing architecture 

  • The security architecture of the organisation’s networks and devices are known in this step. Knowing this helps in the identification of the platform and the device concerned, thus the starting point of an in-depth analysis process.

Understanding risk exposure

  • Knowing the risk that you are exposed to as well as their impacts on your business is assessed in this step. Thus, it helps in prioritising the important bug fixes which need to be addressed at the earliest, then followed by the easier remedies to the problem.

Understanding the firewall of your organisation

  • The firewall of the organisation and the understanding of its topology, analysis of the rules, and its configuration are integral to the network. Various policies of accessibility like remote accessibility are also tested in this step

Pen testing security

  • Stress testing the architecture of the security to check if the security breaks or it can withstand the stress is very important. It is the final stage wherein, if any unresolved issues are remaining, they are spotted, accordingly.

Tools used for the IT security audit

To maintain the best practices, some of the best tools for IT security are — Nikto, Arachini, Nmap, Crack, BurpSuite, testssl, and so on. 

Tools like Crack, check the strength of the password, are helpful in conducting password tests. John The Ripper is also an alternative of the same. Multifunctional bundled tools like the Power Tools can also be used to streamline the audit process and automate it completely.

Taking professional help

If you found the whole process too tiring, you can always hire a professional to do it for you. In fact, getting your IT infrastructure audited by a professional is considered more reliable. There are many security companies that offer security audits. But, one of the best and most trusted in the business is Astra Security

Astra Security provides a holistic audit that uncovers even the minute vulnerabilities in your web app’s code and other assets. They have one of the most detailed testing processes which include more than 1250 tests (automated and manual). Astra, also provides a security certificate as a declaration of secure services. This certificate by Astra can prove to be highly beneficial in building your credibility and trust with customers.

On average, IT Security Audits cost anywhere between $3-4k to $20-30k. Whereas a web security audit and mobile app security audit, depending on the scope, can cost anywhere between $250 to $1500 and can go up till $4-5k. Now, you must keep in mind that IT security audit and other web app audits depend on a number of factors and are largely variable. So to get a more precise quote for your specific system, schedule a call with the Astra security experts today and get your IT systems tested.

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Questions?

Speak to our friendly team today to find out what our services can do for you, or for any other queries, please call 03330 439780 or Chat Live with one of the team.

 

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