As your organization implements a governance, risk management, and compliance (GRC) cybersecurity approach, you might be wondering which tools or processes will streamline the process. One place to start is to implement a GRC framework. Read on to learn all about it!
Breakdown of GRC Frameworks
When developing and implementing a governance, risk, and compliance framework, it helps to:
- Define a GRC framework and explore the different types of frameworks available
- Understand how a GRC framework works
- How and why you should implement GRC frameworks
- Explore tips for building a GRC framework
The best way to implement a GRC framework and apply it to your organization’s needs is to partner with a GRC services provider, who will guide you along each step of the process.
What is a GRC Framework?
A GRC framework refers to the strategy you use to oversee the implementation of governance, risk management, and compliance processes across an entity. As such, an IT GRC framework guides and supports the full-scale implementation of these processes.
With a governance, risk, and compliance framework, organizations can:
- Streamline risk management decision-making across business units
- Align GRC processes to the requirements of the security policy
- Guide the development of GRC structures across IT assets
A GRC framework also provides the baseline for evaluating the maturity of a GRC strategy.
Different Types of GRC Frameworks
The types of GRC frameworks that apply to your organization will depend on factors such as specific industry, geographic location, or type of data processed.
Some of the most frequently implemented GRC frameworks include:
- Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA)
- Payment Card Industry (PCI) Data Security Standards (DSS)
- Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC)
Each of these comprises a set of governance, risk management, and compliance requirements that organizations must meet to secure sensitive digital assets from security threats.
Key Components of a GRC Framework
The three core components of any GRC framework include:
- Governance structures – Implementing security controls across your organization requires the development of relevant policies and guidelines to oversee each of the processes to fruition.
- Risk management processes – Whether risks are internal or external, risk management ensures that risks across your IT assets are promptly identified. Upon detection, the GRC framework must stipulate appropriate mitigatory actions.
- Compliance procedures – Considering the differences in control requirements across different regulatory frameworks, you must implement processes to address each compliance requirement—and keep sensitive assets safe.
For a GRC framework to work effectively, the process owners must continuously interact.
As this interaction becomes more extensive and robust, your chances of mitigating cybersecurity risks early in their lifecycle will be much higher.
The Importance of an Integrated GRC Framework
An integrated GRC framework takes the guesswork out of governance, risk, and compliance processes, ensuring all stakeholders are fully aware of their security roles and responsibilities.
Standardizing GRC risk and compliance management also minimizes the error rate resulting from business or operational units across an entity completing misaligned GRC tasks. There is also a greater sense of internal collaboration when a GRC framework brings data, policies, and processes into a single aligned GRC approach.
How To Implement a GRC Framework
The benefits of a GRC framework come into play when you have a functional GRC platform in place. You can implement a GRC framework by:
- Collecting the data necessary to make risk management decisions
- Drafting a roadmap of the desired outcomes of deploying a GRC platform
- Using the best GRC tools on the market to achieve your cybersecurity goals
However, each organization’s specific needs vary by a range of factors.
That’s where a GRC services provider will help guide you along your journey to GRC maturity and beyond—with the help of a GRC framework.
GRC Tools to Use
There’s a host of tools you can leverage to meet your GRC needs. Most GRC tools help you:
- Manage the documentation of compliance, governance, and risk management processes (e.g., evidence collection for audits)
- Conduct risk analytics to accurately define risk situations
- Simplify the processes necessary to conduct internal audits
- Track business processes across various units in the organization
Working with an experienced GRC partner will help you identify the right tools for your organization’s governance, risk, and compliance needs.
Tips for Building a Successful GRC Framework
Regardless of your experience with GRC, you can build a GRC framework that effectively secures your digital assets from cybersecurity threats. Building a GRC framework requires:
- Buy-in from key stakeholders and decision-makers to enable resource allocation for the acquisition and optimization of GRC tools
- A comprehensive understanding of your risk environment based on:
- Regulatory compliance requirements
- Types of sensitive data you handle
- Current inventory of IT assets
- Strategic alignment across the business units that will be using the GRC platform and framework
A GRC framework is a proven strategy to maximize the effectiveness of GRC tools and ensure your organization remains secure from security threats.
Optimize Your GRC Frameworks
To reap the benefits of a GRC security approach, your organization will likely depend heavily on a GRC framework. Working with RSI Security’s team of GRC experts will bring you closer to achieving the full potential of GRC frameworks. Contact RSI Security today to get started!