The B2B software providers we support often ask whether ISO 27001 or SOC 2 is most suitable for them. There are in fact many similarities between the frameworks and both will provide stakeholders with confidence that their data is protected when working with you.
Both are recognised internationally but clients selling predominantly to US companies tend to opt for SOC 2. Outside the US, ISO 27001 is far more common. The UK companies we support typically opt for ISO 27001, adding SOC 2 when there is a US sales drive. The overlap in frameworks means adding SOC 2 is straight-forward when ISO 27001 is in place and controls are already mapped within Adoptech.
Both frameworks require policies, procedures and security controls established and have the common goal of protecting business information.
ISO 27001 certification requires an organisation to demonstrate an Information Security Management System (ISMS) is established and being maintained in accordance with the standard.
A SOC 2 report is designed to provide assurances about the effectiveness of controls in place at a service organisation that are relevant to the security, availability, or processing integrity of the system used to process clients’ information, or the confidentiality or privacy of that information.
Whilst the scope and objectives of the two frameworks are similar the audit process is a little different.
SOC 2 audit reports provide an auditor’s opinion on the effectiveness of controls over an agreed observation period, typically 90 or 180 days. The SOC 2 audit can only be performed by an independent CPA (Certified Public Accountant). SOC 2 auditors are regulated by the AICPA/CIMA. A successful SOC 2 audit permits the company to use the AICPA logo on its website.
ISO 27001 audits are undertaken by Certified Bodies (CB). Adoptech only works with UKAS accredited CB’s, since they uphold the highest standards and customers typically only accept UKAS accredited certifications. An ISO 27001 auditor will assess the company’s conformance with the standard and if successful the auditor will recommend a company for certification.
Time & Cost
SOC 2 takes longer to achieve, ~9 months to issue a Type 1 Report, 12-24 months to issue a Type 2 Report. Whereas ISO 27001 certification normally takes 6 months to achieve. Of course it can be done much quicker.
SOC 2 is typically more expensive to achieve as there are higher audit fees associated, however, audit fees are significantly reduced by most audit firms when using the Adoptech platform as the process is far more efficient.
To maintain the validity of your SOC 2 attestation and ISO 27001 certification, both frameworks require an annual audit to be conducted.