GRC GRC: Governance, risk management and compliance An increasingly used ‘umbrella term’ that covers these three areas of enterprise activities These areas of activity are progressively being more aligned and integrated to improve enterprise performance and delivery of stakeholder needs.
GRC Definitions GRC: Governance— Exercise of authority; control; government; arrangement. Risk (management )— Hazard; danger; peril; exposure to loss, injury, or destruction (The act or art of managing; the manner of treating, directing, carrying on, or using, for a purpose; conduct; administration; guidance; control) Compliance— The act of complying; a yielding; as to a desire, demand, or proposal; concession; submission Webster’s Online Dictionary
Types of Governance Different types of governance exist: Corporate governance Project governance Information technology governance Environmental governance Economic and financial governance Each type has one or more sources of guidance, each with similar goals but often varying terms and techniques for their achievement.
Implementing Governance The integration of the implementation of the GRC activities within an enterprise requires a systemic approach for reliably achieving the business goals of its stakeholders. Such approaches are typically based on enablers of various types (e.g., principles, policies, models, frameworks, organisational structures).
A GRC Model Example From the OCEG Red Book GRC Capability Model version 2.1
Corporate Governance of IT ISO/IEC 38500: 2008 Corporate governance of information technology 1.1 Scope This standard provides guiding principles for directors of organizations (including owners, board members, directors, partners, senior executives, or similar) on the effective, efficient, and acceptable use of Information Technology (IT) within their organizations. This standard applies to the governance of management processes (and decisions) relating to the information and communication services used by an organization. These processes could be controlled by IT specialists within the organization or external service providers, or by business units within the organization.
Corporate Governance of IT (cont.) ISO/IEC 38500: 2008 Corporate governance of information technology 2.1 Principles 2.1.1 Principle 1: Responsibility 2.1.2 Principle 2: Strategy 2.1.3 Principle 3: Acquisition 2.1.4 Principle 4: Performance 2.1.5 Principle 5: Conformance 2.1.6 Principle 6: Human Behaviour
Corporate Governance of IT (cont.) ISO/IEC 38500: 2008 Corporate governance of information technology 2.2 Model Directors should govern IT through three main tasks: a) Evaluate the current and future use of IT. b) Direct preparation and implementation of plans and policies to ensure that use of IT meets business objectives. c) Monitor conformance to policies, and performance against the plans.
ISACA and COBIT ISACA actively promotes research that results in the development of products both relevant and useful to IT governance, risk, control, assurance and security professionals. ISACA developed and maintains the internationally recognised COBIT framework, helping IT professionals and enterprise leaders fulfil their IT governance responsibilities while delivering value to the business.
COBIT 5 in Overview COBIT 5 brings together the five principles that allow the enterprise to build an effective governance and management framework based on a holistic set of seven enablers that optimises information and technology investment and use for the benefit of stakeholders.
The COBIT 5 Framework Simply stated, COBIT 5 helps enterprises to create optimal value from IT by maintaining a balance between realising benefits and optimising risk levels and resource use. COBIT 5 enables information and related technology to be governed and managed in a holistic manner for the whole enterprise, taking in the full end-to-end business and functional areas of responsibility, considering the IT-related interests of internal and external stakeholders. The COBIT 5 principles and enablers are generic and useful for enterprises of all sizes, whether commercial, not-for -profit or in the public sector.
Governance (and Management) in COBIT 5 Governance ensures that enterprise objectives are achieved by evaluating stakeholder needs, conditions and options; setting direction through prioritisation and decision making; and monitoring performance, compliance and progress against agreed direction and objectives (EDM). Management plans, builds, runs and monitors activities in alignment with the direction set by the governance body to achieve the enterprise objectives (PBRM). Exercising governance and management effectively in practice requires appropriately using all enablers. The COBIT process reference model allows us to focus easily on the relevant enterprise activities.
Governance in COBIT 5 The COBIT 5 process reference model subdivides the IT- related practices and activities of the enterprise into two main areas—governance and management—with management further divided into domains of processes The GOVERNANCE domain contains five governance processes; within each process, evaluate, direct and monitor (EDM) practices are defined. 01 Ensure governance framework setting and maintenance. 02 Ensure benefits delivery. 03 Ensure risk optimisation. 04 Ensure resource optimisation. 05 Ensure stakeholder transparency. The four MANAGEMENT domains are in line with the responsibility areas of plan, build, run and monitor (PBRM).
Risk Management in COBIT 5 The GOVERNANCE domain contains five governance processes, one of which focuses on stakeholder risk-related objectives: EDM03 Ensure risk optimisation. Process Description Ensure that the enterprise’s risk appetite and tolerance are understood, articulated and communicated, and that risk to enterprise value related to the use of IT is identified and managed. Process Purpose Statement Ensure that IT-related enterprise risk does not exceed risk appetite and risk tolerance, the impact of IT risk to enterprise value is identified and managed, and the potential for compliance failures is minimised.
Risk Management in COBIT 5 (cont.) The MANAGEMENT Align, Plan and Organise domain contains a risk-related process: APO12 Manage risk. Process Description Continually identify, assess and reduce IT-related risk within levels of tolerance set by enterprise executive management. Process Purpose Statement Integrate the management of IT-related enterprise risk with overall ERM, and balance the costs and benefits of managing IT-related enterprise risk.
Risk Management in COBIT 5 (cont.) All enterprise activities have associated risk exposures resulting from environmental threats that exploit enabler vulnerabilities EDM03 Ensure risk optimisation ensures that the enterprise stakeholders approach to risk is articulated to direct how risks facing the enterprise will be treated. APO12 Manage risk provides the enterprise risk management (ERM) arrangements that ensure that the stakeholder direction is followed by the enterprise. All other processes include practices and activities that are designed to treat related risk (avoid, reduce/mitigate/control, share/transfer/accept).
Compliance in COBIT 5 The MANAGEMENT Monitor, Evaluate and Assess domain contains a compliance focused process: MEA03 Monitor, evaluate and assess compliance with external requirements. Process Description Evaluate that IT processes and IT-supported business processes are compliant with laws, regulations and contractual requirements. Obtain assurance that the requirements have been identified and complied with, and integrate IT compliance with overall enterprise compliance. Process Purpose Statement Ensure that the enterprise is compliant with all applicable external requirements.
Compliance in COBIT 5 (cont.) Legal and regulatory compliance is a key part of the effective governance of an enterprise, hence its inclusion in the GRC term and in the COBIT 5 Enterprise Goals and supporting enabler process structure (MEA03). In addition to MEA03, all enterprise activities include control activities that are designed to ensure compliance not only with externally imposed legislative or regulatory requirements but also with enterprise governance-determined principles, policies and procedures.
Summary The COBIT 5 framework includes the necessary guidance to support enterprise GRC objectives and supporting activities: Governance activities related to GEIT (5 processes) Risk management process—and supporting guidance for risk management across the GEIT space Compliance—a specific focus on compliance activities within the framework and how they fit within the complete enterprise picture Inclusion of GRC arrangements within the business framework for GEIT helps enterprises to avoid the main issue with GRC arrangements—silos of activity!