When you choose an IT support provider in Los Angeles, make sure it’s a team with appropriate certifications for your business needs. The rise of cybercrime in America has forced all businesses to pay close attention to data protection or face dire consequences.
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Types of Certification
Evaluating the credentials of an IT support provider in Los Angeles requires an understanding of the five levels of federal compliance. It’s particularly important to verify certifications for certain industries, such as healthcare, that face strict federal requirements on privacy. Companies that fail to comply with federal regulations of protecting privacy can face severe fines.
Cybersecurity standards set by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) are the basis for certifications in the IT industry. Certain federal contractors are expected to know and practice the NIST 800-171 standard, although it does not carry a required certification at this time. This framework of 171 security controls specifies activities that should be performed to protect data.
CMMC for Federal Defense Contractors
In 2019, the Defense Department introduced the formation of the Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC), which is a framework based on NIST 800-171 lessons and analysis of other security frameworks. In order for federal contractors to work with the DoD on major projects, they must meet the requirements of the Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement (DFARS) and the Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR). They must further be “self-certified” to comply with NIST 800-171.
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Once the CMMC officially goes into effect, federal defense contractors must be audited by a pre-approved independent party to ensure compliance with DoD cybersecurity standards. The CMMC has different levels of compliance, which are as follows:
Level 1: Safeguard Federal Contract Information (FCI)
Level 2: Transition in Maturity Progression to protect CUI
Level 3: Managed – provides adequate response to cyberthreats
Level 4: Reviewed – includes 156 security controls
Level 5: Optimized – detects advanced-persistent-threats (APTs)
Developing a Plan for Compliance
Federal contractors should first determine if their work involves Controlled Unclassified Information (CUI). If so, the firm should adopt a plan to meet CMMC Level 3. Otherwise, contractors should develop a hybrid plan to comply with both the CMMC Level 1 and NIST 800-171 standards. The firm must conduct a self-assessment to ensure it uses proper security controls such as two-factor authentication and email protection. Its System Security Plan (SSP) should summarize how the organization achieves compliance.
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Working with a cybersecurity-qualified IT support provider in Los Angeles is very important, as certain contractors must carry specific certifications. The importance of cybersecurity nowadays cannot be overstated. Look for an IT provider that can provide your business the latest cyber protection. DCG Technical Solutions, Inc. is NIST-certified and getting CMMC Level 3, and is in the process of getting a certification, and will be certified as soon as the Feds certify the certifiers. For more information, reach out to us, and find out how we can strengthen your cybersecurity and prevent breaches and unwanted visitors on your network.