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The Definitive Guide to GRC Technology

Managing a cybersecurity program has never been more complex. Many information security leaders are shifting their management and assessment processes away from spreadsheets and Word documents to purpose-built solutions to support their growing program. Start here to learn what is GRC technology, the critical capabilities of a GRC solution, and what's on the horizon for cybersecurity program management solutions. 

Introduction

Governance, risk management, and compliance (GRC) are three of the major tenets of effective cybersecurity program management. Together, they enable an organization to effectively meet compliance requirements, manage risk, and standardize across the enterprise.

Getting Started

What is GRC

GRC solutions and tools are designed to enable security leaders to achieve critical objectives to protect their organizations and manage risk.

Governance

Governance is the process through which executive management directs and manages the enterprise at scale using a combination of hierarchy and policies. Corporate governance is designed to ensure that senior management has the necessary and most current information to effectively make decisions and inform company strategy.

Risk Management

Risk Management is the process of quantifying, evaluating, and prioritizing potential risks to an organization based on their entire operation as a whole. Proper risk management practices require that an organization uses coordinated and fiscally responsible choices to utilize resources in a way that minimizes, monitors, and controls the potential consequences of events that can have negative consequences for a business.

Compliance

Compliance is the rules of the market, government or industry in which the organization operates. This is beneficial to ensuring continuity between organizations in the same field and ensures a safe equal playing field for consumers and companies associated with an organization. In the case of cybersecurity, regulations are designed to ensure that consumers can operate with an expected degree of trust in the organization that their data is safe from theft.

While these individual applications may have been sufficient to run business processes in the past, it simply leaves too many gaps to supplement the operations of an organization in today’s landscape. The components that make up GRC programs do not communicate across each other and contain tools that act independently instead of in unison.

See an in-depth overview of what is GRC technology

What to Look for in a GRC Solution

Critical Capabilities of GRC

Critical Capabilities of GRC Technologies 

In recent years, the needs of information technology leaders have shifted. In the face of publicized data breaches, an increasingly informed population on the impact of lacking security as it relates to their data and privacy, and the rise of intellectual property and data theft, security leaders are increasingly looked to in business contexts and must be able to effectively report on the posture of the program across the enterprise, often in real-time.

In today’s business world, integrating Governance, Risk, and Compliance software alongside a swath of new functionality is critical to a modern cybersecurity program’s success. As the practices of integrated risk management and the need for a single-pane-of-glass approach to solutions have gained traction, GRC processes and the platforms that support them have had to evolve.

Governance 

  • Standardizing Processes 
  • Increase collaboration velocity across teams 
  • Data Visualization and More Effective Communication of Information
  • Reporting that Communicates in Business Terms 
  • Governance that Moves Up and Down the Chain of Command 

Read more about the critical capabilities for governance functionality 

Risk 

  • Integration of Risk Assessments Alongside Compliance 
  • “Glass-Box” Risk Quantification Methods and Frameworks
  • Clear Visualization of Risk Data

Read more about critical capabilities of risk functionality 

Compliance 

  • Flexibility and agility ao absorb multiple standards 
  • Benchmarking against foundational frameworks and supplementing with regulatory standards
  • Ability to clearly articulate and present compliance posture across the enterprise 

Read more about critical capabilities of compliance functionality

In sum, today’s cybersecurity leaders need solutions that go beyond legacy, modular GRC platforms. To effectively serve cybersecurity teams, cybersecurity program management solutions must offer more capabilities that oftentimes require a completely different approach to the product than what a GRC tool can offer.

Why GRC needs IRM

GRC vs IRM

Why GRC Needs IRM 

The idea of integrated risk management has gained traction since its introduction by Gartner in 2017. As we’ve discussed, the needs of information security teams today to achieve objectives is not what modular GRC software was designed to support. The result is a disconnect between the goals of a cybersecurity program and the platforms meant to help teams reach them. From maintaining compliance processes across a myriad of regulatory requirements to supporting the handoff from internal audit to risk and compliance teams, and enabling the necessary risk management measures specific to the organization, modular solutions simply cannot stand up to these needs.

To support the people, process, and technology of effective cybersecurity program management it demands an integrated approach - leveraging solutions that deliver a single-pane-of-glass view across teams as well as enable streamlined handoff from one team to another. In order to effectively meet the needs of today’s cybersecurity program, ensure that the solution you select is capable of delivering on the necessities of a modern cybersecurity program.

Read more about Why GRC Needs IRM