Insufficient clarity creates challenges — especially when filling out security questionnaires . Whenever it’ s unclear which needs to fill them out, how much detail needs to be integrated, and how much time it will take, every time you sit down to fill one particular out can feel challenging.
Luckily, there are experts who can help provide key insights into producing the overall security questionnaire process faster, smarter, and stronger. Companies like RFPIO provide teams together by providing software that automates and streamlines the process of responding to the request, so you can respond with full confidence to security questionnaires.
Tapping into their knowledge around complex questionnaires such as RFPs, RFIs, security questionnaires, and more, we discovered ideas you can implement in your own companies. Here are their four key elements to keeping security questionnaires accurate and up to date:
1 . Content Small amounts
Keep your library up to date by assigning content owners and setting up normal review cycles.
Security questionnaires are often repetitive and require a manual responder to ask the same queries of their internal subject matter experts over and over again. By properly keeping security questionnaire content, you are able to build confidence in your reaction process— advantageous when you are under a tight deadline—and save time to get back to what you do greatest.
The ultimate consequence of good, consistent content administration is winning new business. RFPIO makes it simple to set up Answer Library moderation by determining the appropriate content owners, setting a cadence for normal review cycles, and modifying alerts for a cadence functions best for your team plus organization.
2 . Maintain Accuracy
Flag questions that may be outdated for review.
Accuracy is crucial in safety questionnaires. If an wrong or out-of-date response will be submitted, it could cost you the sales opportunity or impact your organization’s reputation. To ensure your response is of the utmost quality and compliance, sustain accurate content and reactions that articulate your current offering’s latest and greatest abilities, and omit what is no longer accurate.
Besides the above process of assigning content material owners and setting up evaluation cycles, we also highly recommend completing a ROT analysis as part of your content audit processes.
ROT stands for “Redundant, Outdated, and Trivial. ”
- Unnecessary Content is usually duplicate and/or similar articles. If you’re using RFPIO, run a duplicate report on questions and answers, and select “View Similar Content” to find comparable responses.
- Outdated Content is expired or even sunset content. Isolate any content not used in the last year—“expired content”—using the Sophisticated Search function in RFPIO. Then, identify content from products, services, and solutions that are no longer relevant—“sunset content”—using tags and/or product names.
- Insignificant Content is usually deal- or client-specific content. Identify trivial content simply by searching for specific client names.
Following, move the content you’ve identified out of your active Answer Library. We recommend storing the information in an archived collection in RFPIO, so it isn’t completely deleted.
Including your most recent pentest data is important.
Several security controls are easier to verify than others. For example , it’s relatively easy to request to see the results of a third-party risk assessment or transmission test that covers the OWASP Top ten and business logic. It’s harder in order to prove that a particular security process or best practice is being followed.
When your client does inquire to see the results of a recent pentest, your first response might be, “We don’t typically provide that information. ” If they press further, you can share the high-level summary of findings, generally referred to as an attestation. Some companies will require that you simply share detailed findings from a pentest report, and a few might request evidence that findings have been fixed. This is where Cobalt’s customizable reports can save you a few valuable time.
3. Automate Your Process
Automatically respond to long and complex questionnaires in a single click with RFPIO’s AI-enabled Answer Library.
A response management platform like RFPIO automates almost everything , helping teams cut their response time by 40-50% on average. Automation frees up your time to create the highest quality deliverable possible—and, associated with course—move on to other focal points on your to-do list.
With an Answer Library full of reviewed, pruned articles you can trust, use Car Respond to quickly fill in appropriate content from past reactions and minimize how many questions you need to complete manually.
4. Stay Constant
Respond to each security questionnaire using the same pre-approved and vetted articles, ensuring consistency across reactions.
When questionnaires are answered manually, there is a likelihood that answers won’t be consistent across various questionnaires or different SMEs writing the answers. This could cause complications during an audit process.
Consistency ensures accurate reactions to compliance requirements. Guarantee your gold-star, key content is present in your library by employing regular review cycles. This, in turn, ensures consistency inside your responses.
This article was co-authored by plus co-published with Cobalt . Cobalt provides a Pentest as a Service (PtaaS) platform that is modernizing the standard, static penetration testing model by providing streamlined processes, developer integrations, and on-demand pentesters. Our blog is where we provide industry guidelines, showcase some of our top-tier talent, and share information that’ s of interest to the cybersecurity community.
Schedule a demo with RFPIO for more details on automating response to security questionnaires.
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