Compliance Does Not Equal Governance: Here’s Why

Jun 30, 2021 9:44:42 AM

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Compliance is an integral piece of the digital transformation puzzle. As you move workloads to hybrid and multi-cloud environments, you need to ensure these environments remain compliant with any relevant regulations in your industry, state, or country. But compliance alone isn’t a full-scale enterprise solution. Governance is needed to put the policies in place to keep environments protected and compliant. Governance and compliance cannot be treated as one and the same – they rely on one another, but are, in fact, very different. Just because your cloud environments are compliant doesn’t necessarily mean they are governed.   

Defining compliance and governance: an analogy  

Governance and compliance can be defined in simpler terms by comparing them to government operations. Governance is like writing legislation, whereas compliance monitoring is like surveillance and law enforcement. Each is dependent on the other to maintain law and order in society – and in your cloud environments.   

Why You Need Both Compliance and Governance Modules  

Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) and Chief Risk Officers (CROs) today want to declare as corporate policy a baseline set of controls that apply to all their applications running across their hybrid cloud. Then, they will add additional controls that specific applications must incorporate based on specific industry regulations, such as the Payment Card Industry (PCI), or laws like the Federal Information Systems Management Act (FISMA). With this, they want the ability to continuously monitor those applications for compliance with their policy and detect compliance drift. To accomplish this, they need both a Governance solution and a Compliance solution.    

Optimally, they will be able to achieve this in a single, integrated best-of-suite solution that contains both governance and compliance. Governance sets the policy, declaring all controls, both automated and manual with their related processes and procedures, that should be applied to an application. Compliance solutions test the automated controls to see if they are in place and properly configured. But typically, automated controls constitute only 60% of the total control set; the other 40% consist of management, operational, and privacy non-automatable controls. Furthermore, most compliance solutions lack the ability to map their control tests to specific applications. Consequently, compliance-only solutions lack the ability to present evidence for IT auditors, industry regulators, CROs, or CISOs.  

The Governance & Compliance Solution  

Having a compliance-only module does not give you governance capability. Cloud Security Posture Management (CSPM) and Cloud Workload Protection Platforms (CWPP) offer compliance scanning – which is necessary, but not sufficient.   

The bottom line – you shouldn’t invest in a compliance-only solution thinking it will solve your governance problem. Continuous cloud governance is what CISOs and CROs require.   

 Caveonix has the only platform delivering continuous cloud governance for the hybrid and multi-cloud. We combine CSPM, CWPP, and GRC into the Caveonix Cloud platform so you have full-stack visibility, compliance, and governance across your enterprise public, private and hybrid cloud footprints.  

If you’re ready to implement continuous governance in your cloud ecosystems, contact us to schedule a demo. Caveonix Cloud also is available on AWS Marketplace to protect your AWS cloud workloads, other public clouds, or dedicated enterprise deployment.   

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