7 Reasons Why You Need a CMMC Assessment and How Charles IT Can Help
The defense industrial base (DIB) is one the world’s biggest supply chains, comprising more than 300,000 organizations. This includes any business or institution which has contracts with the US DoD, a supplier portfolio that ranges from universities which carry out critical research to enterprises that product, deliver, and operate military systems.
One of the biggest challenges of the modern world is securing the information infrastructure of this enormous and extremely diverse supply chain. That’s why the Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC) is in the process of becoming law. CMMC aims to bolster security posture across the entire DIB to guard against pervasive threats like cyberwarfare.
Every DoD contractor will need to be CMMC-certified, likely by the end of the year, provided the development of the legislation remains on track. This includes all organizations that handle controlled unclassified information (CUI) on behalf of the DoD. One of the most important of the new obligations is the need for third-party auditing to achieve a certification.
CMMC defines five levels of cybersecurity maturity, each one incrementally improving on the previous level with additional practices. These practices largely originate from the established security requirements of the DFARS SP 252.204-7012 standard. Having a CMMC assessment carried out now provides many important benefits, which we’ll look at in this article.
#1. Prepare for future regulatory changes
The regulatory landscape is constantly changing and evolving, and CMMC is no exception. In August 2020, for example, an amendment was put forward which presents significant changes to what it takes to become compliance. As such, DoD contractors face an ongoing challenge to keep ahead of these developments and prepare for future regulatory changes. Scheduling regular third-party assessments will ensure you stay compliant no matter the changes.
#2. Scale your cybersecurity infrastructure
CMMC provides a rigid set of procedures required to obtain a certain level of certification. By following these standards, you can create uniform policies and apply them across your entire technology infrastructure at any scale. Getting a CMMC assessment will show you where you currently are and advise you on the next steps to take, thus incrementally improving security and scaling your systems without adding unnecessary risk.
#3. Expose vulnerabilities in your architecture
Being based on an internationally recognized set of procedures and standards, CMMC serves as a valuable baseline for security maturity, even if your organization isn’t thinking about taking on DoD contracts in the foreseeable future. Having an assessment carried out will expose any potential vulnerabilities, which is extremely important given the diversity and complexity found in today’s technology environments.
#4. Get an outside view of your cybersecurity
For businesses which have already reached a high level of cybersecurity maturity, by far the most important factor in achieving CMMC compliance is the need for a third-party audit from an approved CMMC auditor. Aside from eliminating potential conflicts of interest, this can also be beneficial for the contractor itself. Getting an outside view of your cybersecurity can reveal issues you might otherwise have missed, hence why it’s good to start with an assessment.
#5. Implement a proactive cybersecurity strategy
In spite of the serious consequences associated with data breaches, especially when it comes to matters of national security, many organizations fail to prioritize their cybersecurity controls as necessary. It has never been more important to adopt a proactive cybersecurity culture that incorporates an optimal blend of human expertise and innovative technology. An assessment will validate your cybersecurity capabilities ahead of an official audit.
#6. Secure your supply chains
Every company has supply chains of their own, which also need to be secured. After all, many data breaches happen at the hands of third parties an organization does business with. Prior to CMMC, even working with the DoD required a certain level of trust through self-certification. However, having independent assessors will help expose supply chain vulnerabilities and give you the peace of mind you need to welcome future CMMC auditors.
#7. Win more lucrative defense contracts
With military spending constantly increasing, having the ability to secure defense contracts is highly lucrative. However, before you start bidding on defense contracts, you’ll first need to ensure your cybersecurity operations are up to the job, especially if you want to secure the most profitable contacts. We recommend aiming for a level-3 certification to begin with, since this will let your company store, process, or transmit CUI. After achieving level 3, you should work towards the next level to secure more valuable contracts as well as establish a stronger competitive advantage.
How Charles IT can help
If your business currently has contracts with the DoD or wants to expand into the market in the future, we can help you prepare for CMMC compliance with comprehensive assessments, tailor-made advice, and world-class cybersecurity solutions. We start with a gap assessment to identify any vulnerabilities before implementing the necessary security services and controls to help you prepare for your CMMC certification.
Are you ready to fill the gaps in your cybersecurity infrastructure? Contact us today to find out more!