As the businesses realize that moving to cloud is the best decision since it provides scalability, flexibility and agility, more and more companies are keen to adopt cloud-based services. But there is reluctance due to the concerns such as privacy risks, data loss and identity theft. Implementation of less-secure solutions is problematic for enterprises but for government agencies it is matter of national security. The U.S. government being one of the biggest consumers of cloud services, standardized the process of security assessment, authorization and continuous monitoring for cloud service providers as a part of Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP).
FedRAMP was created in 2011 with an aim to adopt a standardized approach to risk assessment and security for a secure cloud adoption across the departments of government. Cloud Service Providers (CSPs) must be authorized by FedRAMP in order to have the U.S. Government as their customer. The four processes in the FedRAMP Security Assessment Framework are Documentation, Assessment, Authorization and Monitoring. Documentation ensures categorization of information system and selection of security control.
All cloud providers need to submit the System Security Plan (SSP) along with supporting documents to ensure compliance. Cloud service providers demonstrate the security controls that are implemented to FedRAMP accredited third party assessment organizations. After the assessment phase, as a part of authorization, agencies make integration authorization decisions depending on capabilities and risks that are identified in the cloud system. The last process is FedRAMP authorization which is conducted either by individual agencies or Joint Authorization Board (JAB). A joint authorization board authorization will be prioritizing cloud service providers the are most likely to be used across the federal government whereas agency authorization allows cloud service providers to partner with specific agencies to attain authorization to operate (ATO) for that particular agency. Finally, once the FedRAMP authorization is achieved by the cloud service provider, continuous monitoring must be implemented so as to adhere to the baseline security controls.
FedRAMP is one of the most rigorous authorization certifications owing to its processes in the assessment framework that the cloud service providers have to go through. FedRAMP marketplace has three classifications for the FedRAMP-authorized cloud service providers, i.e., FedRAMP Ready, FedRAMP in Process and FedRAMP Authorized. Some of the benefits of using a FedRAMP authorized cloud service providers are, reduction of inefficiencies throughout the software development lifecycle, accelerated adoption of cloud computing through transparent processes, consistency in the security standards of cloud solutions, real-time monitoring, data breach risk mitigation, and unparalleled data security.
Do you want to navigate the complexities of FedRAMP compliances and select a path that makes the most sense for your organization’s business needs? Innominds’ Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP) advisory services are designed to simplify security for the ‘Digital Next’ age. We help you to identify, understand, and overcome compliance challenges to ensure that systems are meeting correct “security standards and protocols”. To know more about FedRAMP Advisory Services, get in touch with us today.