Proliferating regulatory mandates and exploding electronic information makes compliance a nightmare for most organizations. It is almost impossible to deploy one product for SOX compliance and another for HIPAA or PCI compliance. Manual workarounds, failed audits and looming threats of punitive action under different acts makes piecemeal compliance impractical and unacceptable. Organizations therefore yearn for simplified compliance solutions that are tightly integrated, highly automated, scalable, extensible and reliable. Cloud computing services that combine advanced capabilities while keeping you in command of proliferating information and compliance requirements are therefore, very attractive.

Cloud computing services automate data collection, benchmark mapping, change tracking and report for internal or external audits with ease. The proactive controls are designed for legal compliance. They permit multiple compliance management and deliver simple, centralized systems that allow policy definitions and automated compliance auditing processes across environments and platforms. Extensive libraries of predefined rules, rule sets that address key issues associated with compliance built into some cloud computing solutions, can be used for automatically defining and scanning configuration states and displaying the results on dashboards that relate to specific legal mandates. All this facilitates simplified compliance and allows data to be viewed at a glance.

Most cloud backup and storage systems provide for end-to-end policy enforcements that locks out unauthorized users and tracks user activities on the system. File integrity monitoring keeps track of changes to files, directories, registry keys and provides visibility and real time monitoring for resolution of incidents that may compromise data in storage. Read write protection and reconciliation maps in sophisticated cloud backup systems track changes to the originating system and other management applications ensuring security. As a result, protection is immensely strengthened, while management complexities are reduced.

In short, cloud computing services:

  1. Centralize data management for policy auditing and reporting
  2. Provide end-to-end change control and configuration integrity
  3. Allow tight integration of software for network security, host intrusion prevention, application control and vulnerability management

Cloud users can expect to realize continuous compliance expectations with end to end visibility.  Labor intensive, error prone integration of separate compliance products can be avoided, while costs of compliance and complexities of compliance are dramatically reduced.