Elevating Cybersecurity for Utilities
Safeguarding Continental Utility Solutions, Inc. (CUSI) client data is our main priority. IBM’s Cost of Data Breach Report highlights that the average cost of a data breach in 2023 was equivalent to 4.45 million dollars. This cost continues to rise annually and is 15% higher than three years ago. These costs are alarming, and to combat the growing threat to our customers, we have invested heavily in ensuring our processes and products are as secure as possible.
CUSI is proud to announce a significant industry achievement our team has accomplished as we continue to invest and improve our security posture. CUSI has successfully achieved certification as a SOC 2 (System and Organization Controls) compliant software vendor after successfully completing the Type 1 audit process. CUSI’s commitment to security is evident in this milestone and emphasizes our dedication to prioritizing the safety and confidentiality of client data.
Why is SOC 2 Certification Important?
The SOC 2 certification, developed by the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA), is a rigorous process ensuring software vendors follow best practices related to security. However, to be compliant, software vendors must complete the lengthy audit process that confirms adequate controls and processes are in place to handle and protect customer data. It evaluates an organization’s handling of customer data based on stringent criteria covering security, availability, processing integrity, confidentiality, and privacy. This certification represents CUSI’s commitment to upholding the highest standards of client data protection and operational integrity.
Why is this so important for Utilities?
Check out this article from dashlane.com that includes Real-World Examples of Hacks and Breaches in the Utilities and Energy Industry.
What CUSI’s SOC 2 Compliance Means
CUSI’s successful SOC 2 compliance wasn’t earned by providing auditors with a procedural checklist; it could only be accomplished by a company-wide commitment to improving our products and procedures. These changes impacted each department and required that many processes be updated to adequately meet SOC 2 standards. These process changes ensure that customer data is handled in the most secure manner possible, from the start of the implementation process to providing technical support as well as how data is stored within the application and operating environment.
This certification signifies the organization’s dedication to implementing robust controls, processes, and procedures. It’s a testament to CUSI’s drive to deliver secure, reliable, and innovative software solutions tailored specifically to meet the unique needs of utilities nationwide.
Software Vendor vs. Hosted Vendor SOC Compliance
Unfortunately, many software vendors rely on their hosting partners to make the costly investment in becoming SOC 2 compliant. Though our hosting partner, Microsoft Azure, is also SOC 2 compliant, CUSI believes more is needed to properly safeguard customer data. Today, technology companies must securely manage customer data through all phases of the client relationship, during the implementation, data conversion, hosting, and support processes. However, by partnering with a true SOC 2 compliant software vendor, you can be sure that your data is properly managed and secured at all times, mitigating your risk of a data breach. Furthermore, as federal, state, and local security regulations continue to evolve, working with a SOC 2-compliant vendor will help your utility stay ahead of those changing regulations.
“At CUSI, we understand the critical importance of data security in our industry. This certification reaffirms our pledge to our clients, assuring them that their data is handled with the utmost care and protection,” mentioned David Short, CUSI’s Chief Security Officer, in driving CUSI’s commitment to excellence.
Ultimately, we don’t believe companies can outsource SOC 2 compliance to their hosting partner. SOC 2 compliance is a rigorous standard that ensures customers that a specific organization has end-to-end processes in place to maximize data security and mitigate evolving risks while maintaining operational reliability. This immense responsibility falls on each software vendor if they are committed to providing the most secure products and services.
Innovation and Client-Centric Approach
Achieving SOC 2 compliance isn’t just a milestone; it’s a reflection of CUSI’s unwavering dedication to prioritizing the security and confidentiality of client data. This accomplishment enables CUSI to set new standards in the industry, ensuring that clients can confidently rely on our suite of secure products and services designed to streamline utility operations while safeguarding sensitive information.
As CUSI continues its innovation and client-centric development journey, this milestone reinforces its position as a trusted partner, providing cutting-edge solutions backed by robust security measures and award-winning customer support to utilities worldwide.
For more information about Continental Utility Solutions, Inc. (CUSI) and its comprehensive suite of secure utility solutions, visit cusi.com.