The United States Department of Defense (DoD) deals with a lot of controlled unclassified information (CUI), which necessitates “safeguarding or distribution restrictions in accordance with and compatible with relevant law, regulations, and government-wide policy.” The Department of Defense announced an interim standard to the Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement (DFARS) in December 2015, requiring DoD contractors to comply with specific cybersecurity standards by December 31, 2017.
If you want to compete on a DoD contract, you must comply with the Defense Federal Acquisition Regulations.
What Does It Mean to Comply with the Defense Federal Acquisition Regulations?
DoD contractors must have National Institute of Guidelines and Technology (NIST) Special Publication 800-171-compliant cybersecurity measures to minimize data breaches, as well as processes to notify a breach if one occurs, according to DFARS compliance standards. DoD vendors must also examine themselves regularly to ensure that CUI is safeguarded under DFARS. This is where the role of a DFARS consultant Virginia Beach becomes essential.
What Can You Do to Comply with DFARS?
You must sufficiently handle all 14 security standard types specified in NIST SP 800-171 to be DFARS-compliant. These five pointers will assist you in getting started:
#1 Evaluation of security and risk
Collecting, maintaining, and transferring CUI has some operational hazards. That’s why you must analyze your internal rules and IT systems for weaknesses that might put CUI at risk. This will assist you in identifying and correcting flaws, hence reducing or eliminating hazards.
Given the increasing complexity of cybersecurity and regulatory requirements, it’s essential to enlist the help of a DFARS cybersecurity adherence specialist to conduct these evaluations.
#2 Implement an IT system as well as physical security measures
You must monitor, regulate, and safeguard your IT technologies and the physical buildings that house them to maintain adequate data security. Restricting physical access to your workplace, encrypting interactions, segregating internal connections from publicly available systems, blocking unwanted data transfers to pooled system assets, and more are all part of this process.
#3 Set up authentication, classification, and permissions control
Register and control every person and device that connects to your data and IT systems, and ensure that each user only has access to the information they need to complete their jobs. For instance, HR workers should not have easy access to high-level data from the financial department.
Each time individuals or devices enter your data or system, you must be able to identify, trace, and recognize them using correct security standards. This includes, among other things, enabling multifactor authentication, banning password reuse, establishing password severity criteria, and automatically logging out a user after a predetermined time of inactivity.
#4 Hold a cyber-awareness training session
The security risks connected with corporate data and systems usage must be made clear to all personnel. They must understand the many rules, regulations, and protocols that they must follow to carry out their duties securely.
#5 Create and Implement an Incident Response Strategy
An Incident Response Plan is a series of processes that allows you to identify, evaluate, manage, recuperate from, and handle a data breach or any other type of cybersecurity incident. You must test your company’s security management regularly and make modifications as needed.