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April 2004

Ensure audit success with sound security audit procedures

By George Wrenn We've all seen them before, those blue suits carrying shiny leather briefcases: Auditors. They march into our shops, asking question after question, touching and probing everything connected to a CAT 5. They check for everything from industry best practices to security standards to government regulations. The result is usually a thick report that grades your security program as pass or fail. The CISSP exam is nothing compared to this pressure. But, auditors -- whether they're internal or third parties -- are a security professional's friends. They are a second set of eyes, looking at your policies, infrastructure and practices and verifying the areas in which you're doing well, and those that need work. Most importantly, they tell you how well you're complying with standards and regulations, such as ISO 17799 and Sarbanes-Oxley. IT audits may be stressful, but they don't have to be. A few simple steps will help you handle auditors, avoid common mistakes and reduce -- if not eliminate -- the stress. Whether you're...

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