Rules and regulations are necessary in virtually every industry in order to maintain a certain level of order. The business of recycling electronics and destroying data is no different. One of the many types of compliance whose requirements organizations in this industry must adhere to is SOX compliance.
What Is SOX Compliance?
The acronym “SOX” refers to the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, which Congress passed in order to protect the American people from fraudulent or fallacious practices carried out by corporations. This law was created, in part, to push for more transparency in businesses’ financial reporting processes. The Sarbanes-Oxley Act served as the first concrete response to corporate scandals that occurred during the early 2000s when publicly traded companies like WorldCom and Enron Corporation became embroiled in financial controversies.
SOX Compliance Requirements
The act of introducing SOX financial security controls can help shield your organization from information theft via cyberattacks. Thus, many SOX compliance requirements intersect with business functions that are carried out to ensure data security. Here are four key SOX requirements your organization should follow:
CEOs & CFOs Acknowledge Responsibility
Any organization’s top two executives must always verify that all financial reports are accurate and properly documented and submitted. They also bear the responsibility of informing the SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission) of their organization’s internal control structure. If a CEO or CFO fails to meet this compliance requirement, he/she could potentially face severe penalties, including fines and jail time.
Internal Control Report
This report delineates how an organization’s management team is required to internally control all financial records. Top executives should be immediately notified of any errors or omissions in order to further ensure transparency.
Formal Data Security Policies
Clear and formal data security policies must be established, effectively communicated, and enforced. Your organization should aim to create and develop a comprehensive data security plan that can protect all financial data, especially information that is used to conduct regular business operations.
This is especially important because the cost of data breaches and other similar cyberattacks is notably high. According to a recent report from IBM, the average total cost of a data breach worldwide is $3.86 million, although in the United States this figure has reached up to $8.64 million. This report also concluded that it takes 280 days on average to detect and contain a breach.
Documentation Showing SOX Compliance
The final requirement for SOX compliance is perhaps one of the most important. Your organization must prove that it is meeting the above requirements and that it continues to track and evaluate SOX compliance goals.
How To Remain SOX Compliant
One of the most effective ways to ensure you are remaining SOX compliant is to hire an independent auditor to conduct SOX audits. These types of audits should generally be completed separately from other audits in order to avoid conflicts of interest. There are also three different types of services that can help your organization remain SOX compliant: hard drive shredding services, degaussing services, and data destruction services.
Hard Drive Shredding Services
Hard drives contain substantial amounts of information. If you ever need to dispose of this data, shredding is a highly effective method of doing this.
The process of degaussing involves removing undesirable magnetism from a device in order to rectify any color disturbance. It serves as a type of sanitation process.
Data Destruction Services
Secure onsite data destruction services generally include the above two services, as well as recycling. Thorough descriptions of this process and certificates are typically also required for reporting and auditing-related reasons.
Reach Out To A Professional Data Destruction Company
Speak to the experts at e-End in Frederick, Maryland for more information on SOX compliance requirements. We are one of the most respected organizations in the Maryland, Virginia, and Pennsylvania regions due to having met NAID’s (National Association for Information Destruction) AAA requirements for specialized data destruction services that include wiping hard drives, optical, film, and other media devices. Our services include electronic recycling, equipment, and device destruction, degaussing, and IT asset disposition.
Here at e-End, we are validated by the highest electronic certifications to help you remain compliant with SOX, GLB, FACTA, FISMA, COP, and HIPAA. Our onsite data destruction service includes an outline of the job execution, as well as extensive data sanitization and the packing of any remaining materials in gaylord boxes to be moved to their final recycling disposition. A Certificate of Witnessed Data Sanitization and Destruction is then provided for reporting and auditing purposes, including serial numbers. Contact us to learn more by giving us a call at 240.713.5855 or get a quote online today.