SOC 2 Report: What is it?
Reports on Controls at a Service Organization Relevant to Security, Availability, Processing Integrity, Confidentiality, and Privacy: Many entities outsource tasks or entire functions to service organizations that operate, collect, process, transmit, store, organize, maintain and dispose of information for user entities. SOC 2 engagements use the predefined criteria in Trust Services Principles, Criteria, and Illustrations, as well as the requirements and guidance in AT Section 101, Attest Engagements, of SSAEs (AICPA, Professional Standards, vol. 1). A SOC 2 report is similar to a SOC 1 report.
Either a type 1 or type 2 report may be issued and the report provides a description of the service organization’s system. For a type 2 report, it also includes a description of the tests performed by the service auditor and the results of those tests. SOC 2 reports specifically address one or more of the following five key system attributes:
Security – The system is protected against unauthorized access (both physical and logical).
Availability – The system is available for operation and use as committed or agreed.
Processing integrity – System processing is complete, accurate, timely and authorized.
Confidentiality – Information designated as confidential is protected as committed or agreed.
Privacy – Personal information is collected, used, retained, disclosed and disposed of in conformity with the commitments in the entity’s privacy notice, and with criteria set forth in Generally Accepted Privacy Principles (GAPP) issued by the AICPA and Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants.
A SOC 2 report would be most applicable to a Co-location or Data Center facility, however, there are some instances where a SOC 1 report may be better suited for these types of organizations.