The role of biometrics with FISMA compliance

The role of biometrics with FISMA compliance

Complying with government standards and industry regulations can be a challenging task. There is often plenty of gray area involved with the effort, and it can include heaps of work for data logging and verification. That said, biometric technology provided by Digitus Biometrics can streamline this process, helping an agency meet regulatory standards and shore up its physical security.

Keeping pace with FISMA
One of the most vital kinds of regulation is derived from The Federal Information Security Management Act of 2002, commonly referred to as FISMA. This act establishes an expansive set of guidelines to protect government information from potential security threats as they continue to gain dependence on IT systems. FISMA sets up standards for categorizing information that must be protected. It also establishes baseline controls for security and consistent steps for upkeep. A FISMA-compliant agency performs risk-assessment procedures and thorough documentation, assesses system effectiveness and regularly monitors these implementations.

Without a comprehensive system in place, compliance can be a daunting hurdle. However, with biometric security, an agency can gain a strong understanding of its internal activity and meet FISMA regulations in a quick and efficient manner. Digitus uses DAS-SQL technology, which provides IT managers with descriptive audit reports on server access details, such as the day and time of entry.

FISMA is a necessary part of federal operations. And with biometric technology, it doesn't have to be a hindrance.

FISMA provides opportunities for IT enterprises
According to Lexology, FISMA covers not just government agencies, but also contractors and other sources that work with federal agencies. At the crux of the law is information security. The consistent need for oversight and diagnostics technology will create an emerging market for independent auditing firms and technology enterprises that can help transition these agencies into the digital age.

For many federal workers, the learning curve for cloud computing and other technologies is steep enough. Complying with stringent regulations, such as those enforced by FISMA, is something that often requires external assistance. The news outlet reported that commercial providers of high-performance diagnostics technology will find plenty of market demand in the coming years, especially as more and more agencies adopt digital technologies that could put important data at risk.

"Biometric security can make FISMA compliance all but second nature."

Streamlining the compliance process
Meeting industry standards and regulations can be an exhausting process, according to CSO. The news outlet noted that a number of organizations feel like they are trying to compensate for so many regulations that they are hampering other parts of their business. However, there are a number of different ways to streamline regulatory compliance efforts and get back to commercial operations.

"If you have 10,000 systems, do you think all of them legitimately have to handle regulated data? Probably not," Anton Chuvakin, a research director of security and risk management for Gartner, told the news outlet. "So reduce the scope, build walls around it, then implement compliance controls inside that 'walled garden.'"

Dennis Devlin, the chief information security officer and senior vice president of privacy practice for Savanture, said that regulatory policies require constant oversight so an agency can detect any deviations from standard procedures. One surefire way to keep pace with this requirement is to establish a comprehensive system of access control.

"[Compliance] is not a once a year affair," Pascual told the news outlet. "It needs to be baked in throughout the business. If you're not doing that, you won't be compliant and eventually you'll pay the price."

Biometric security can make FISMA compliance all but second nature. And by cleaning up the regulatory side of business, an agency can get back to the core of its operations without worrying about standards.

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