July 19, 2022

The Importance of Annual IT Audits

There are numerous reasons why financial institutions should conduct independent security assessments and audits of its IT infrastructure. We have provided the top five reasons your institution should implement an annual IT audit plan:

  1. Comply with regulatory requirements – Financial institutions are required to perform IT security testing to ensure specific information security requirements are met, controls are implemented, and risks are assessed.
  2. Comply with internal security policies – Board-approved policies governing information security, cybersecurity, and IT security include best practice requirements for testing and audit controls within the credit union. Examiners and auditors will review internal policies to ensure the credit union is adhering to its audit requirements.
  3. Identify security gaps and weaknesses – IT Audits can identify immediate areas for improvement in which controls and safeguards do not meet best practices or standards.  Financial institutions can address deficiencies and implement controls within business operations, employee practices, and IT systems and applications following recommendations provided from the IT Audit.
  4. Assess IT budget and resource needs – Financial institutions should establish IT strategic plans which address business needs and allocate appropriate resources to implement effective security controls. The results of an IT Audit helps to assess if additional solutions are needed, such as enhancements to upgrade or replace existing hardware and software.  IT Audits can also identify unnecessary resources, which can help save money or redirect resources to a more effective solution.
  5. Establish and reassess a security baseline – IT Audits identify areas where the financial institution is doing well and areas where improvements are needed.  Financial institutions can understand its security posture and how effective its strategies may be in the event of an adverse event, such as a cyber-attack, system failure, or data breach.  Financial institutions continue to mature and enhance its security posture following the results of IT Audits.

IT Audits ultimately helps to protect the financial institution and its stakeholders.  If your institution has not performed an independent IT Audit within the last twelve months, contact us for more information.