Understanding the ins and outs of your company’s IT infrastructure can be pretty complicated! But whether you’re a small, family-run business, or a large corporation, it’s important that you understand what risks your current IT system poses, how to resolve them and how to prevent future issues. This is where an IT audit comes in…
What exactly is an IT audit?
An IT audit is an in-depth analysis of your company’s IT policies, operations and entire infrastructure. It investigates whether the systems that are currently in place are actually up to scratch and in line with industry best practice. The audit should also uncover any risks associated with your IT infrastructure, and provide you with the next steps to help reduce these risks.
If you’ve already had an IT audit, but don’t have a team to help support these actions and your usual IT operations, get in touch to discuss our remote, fully managed and co-managed IT support options.
IT audit framework
There are typically three ways in which an IT audit can be carried out: a performance audit; compliance with laws, regulations, standards and policies audit; and financial statement audits.
If you’re wondering what exactly you should look for in an IT audit, basic audits should cover the following checklist:
- Make sure that you are using up-to-date desktop systems, and that these are suitable for productivity and modern software
- A Cyber Essentials audit of your internal systems, as well as looking to see if any of your data is available on the ‘dark web’
- Check that your physical infrastructure is fit for business needs and if it is set up correctly
- An analysis of your internet connectivity, assessing speed and stability, as well as bandwidth requirements
- If you’re using cloud technology, an examination of the cloud, and whether it is set up and being used securely.
Our world-class, award-winning and accredited service desk supply tailored IT support services to assist all types of businesses. Alongside our IT audit, you can explore other IT support services we provide.
Why is an IT audit so important?
IT security audit tools are a crucial part of analysing the way your business operates. An audit will give you peace of mind that you don’t have some massive security threat right under your nose that you just don’t know about!
However, an IT security audit is not just a risk assessment, there are a number of reasons why an audit is important. If you find yourself losing precious time to slow network performance or frequent downtime, an IT audit can help figure out why this is happening. The time you usually waste watching a page load painfully slow could be spent doing actual work (or watching your favourite funny animal video on YouTube).
What are the advantages of an IT audit?
Let’s dive deeper into the main goals of an IT audit, and what advantages these can bring to your business.
1. Facilitates IT risk assessment
IT audit risk assessments provide a framework for analysing potential and current IT risks for your organisation, particularly with regards to confidentiality, IT processes and data integrity. This allows for the prevention of threats to your business and makes sure your business is operating as low-risk as possible!
2. Provides a clear method to tackle risk
IT security audit reports provide employees, in particular those dealing specifically with IT, with a clear method to follow to tackle risks and accept them into IT controls.
3. Improves data security
Through analysing risks to the security of your IT infrastructure, you also ensure that your data is secure against potential threats. An in-depth observation of the current status of your processes gives you the opportunity to adapt controls and develop and upgrade them to make sure your business is protecting its data to the best of its ability.
Read more about the importance of cyber security?
4. Enhances IT governance and compliance
An IT audit is essential to assess whether all employees are complying with business regulations. This gives an enhanced insight into other risks associated with IT systems and therefore improves IT governance.
5. Identifies and prevents fraud
By constantly assessing and improving your IT processes, you help to protect your business against fraud (and no-one likes frauds!)
6. Assesses systems and integrity
An IT audit assesses whether the systems your business uses are working at their most efficient and are actually effective in achieving your business objectives. An auditor will highlight how you can improve your IT systems, and therefore your business productivity.
7. Reinforces IT operation controls
An IT audit will evaluate controls in place within your IT operations, and assess their efficiency. This allows for them to be reinforced and reorganised if they aren’t performing to standards.
So there you have it! You can see why routine and frequent IT audits are an essential procedure for the protection of data and business operating systems.