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ISO 27001 vs SOC 2 Certification: What’s The Difference?

In the age of sophisticated technology – and even more sophisticated cyber crime – safeguarding company data and other sensitive information has never been more important.

Globally, the two most popular frameworks for information security and risk management are SOC 2 and ISO 27001. But which certification is best for your organisation? Ultimately, this depends on how you operate. So, to help you make an informed judgement, we’ve provided a breakdown of each below.

What is SOC 2?

A now internationally recognised auditing Standard, SOC 2 was designed as an assurance report for outsourced services. If you’re a company who provides outsourced services to other organisations, or your company benefits from third-party tools, achieving SOC 2 certification tells your clients that you prioritise privacy, security, integrity, and confidentiality.

Though SOC 2 compliance isn’t a legal requirement, some clients may stipulate prerequisites in their own contracts – such as B2B or SaaS operations that regularly handle sensitive data. And, since SOC 2 is widely adopted throughout these industries, it makes sense to pursue your certification to expand your target market as much as possible.

With SOC 2 certification you can:

  • Build trust
  • Increase competitive edge
  • Reduce the need for constant audits
  • Boost new business
  • Improve the employee experience 

What is ISO 27001?

ISO 27001 comprises business-driven risk assessments. To gain certification, not only must your organisation identify any potential security risks surrounding sensitive information, you must also demonstrate that you’ve taken concrete steps to mitigate them.

Unlike SOC 2, ISO 27001 can be a legal and regulatory requirement for many companies. In fact, a number of organisations will only partner with your business if you can demonstrate certification. 

This Standard can help you to:

  • Win more business
  • Improve the culture of security in your organisation
  • Review and improve the strength of your security measures
  • Reassure existing customers
  • Reduce costs associated with information management


Which framework is right for your business?

Now that you have a better understanding of each framework, you’ll hopefully be one step closer to determining whether your business is better suited to SOC 2 or ISO 27001.

Ultimately, SOC 2 is a recommended framework which applies to any organisation that offers outsourced financial or non-financial services. This could be asset managers, pension service providers, SaaS/IaaS/PaaS providers, data centre providers, or cloud hosting providers.

On the other hand, ISO 27001 is for organisations that are technology-rich or heavily reliant on digital data storage, or for those that hold sensitive data in other formats. Healthcare providers, educational establishments, local authorities, public bodies, and retailers can all use ISO 27001 to protect their information.


Certification from Centre for Assessment

If you’re still unsure which Standard is right for you, Centre for Assessment can help. We’re a UKAS-accredited body with a long-standing commitment to providing businesses across a range of industries with ISO 27001 and SOC 2 certification. 

Our friendly and client-focused approach means we’re best placed to guide you throughout the entire process. Want to know more? We’re always happy to answer your questions. Contact us today.

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