Is Your Business Ready For NIST SP 800-171 Compliance Requirements?
Who needs to meet NIST SP 800-171 compliance requirements
At the moment, only DoD contractors must ensure they meet NIST SP 800-171 compliance by December 31, 2017. However, the US government has made it clear that ALL FARS Contracts will include the requirement to be compliant with NIST SP 800-171 over the next few years.
This means any private business that has government contracts, not just DoD contracts, needs to start preparing for NIST SP 800-171. If you provide any type of service or product to a government entity, you will have to meet NIST SP 800-171 compliance requirements.
What to expect with NIST SP 800-171
Following a NIST SP 800-171 assessment, businesses can expect to make changes that will involve necessary updates to their virus protection, two-factor authentication, changing existing equipment with compliant solution equipment, reviewing policies and procedures, vendor agreements, and so on.
Why get a head start on NIST SP 800-171
The sooner you know what areas you need to make changes to in order to meet NIST SP 800-171 compliance, the less costly your investment will be because you avoid unnecessary upgrades or changes that don’t meet compliance requirements, and you give yourself enough time to implement all the necessary changes, which allows you to spread out your costs over time instead of having to rush and make the investment all at once.
The benefits of meeting NIST SP 800-171
Since the changes to meet NIST SP 800-171 compliance requirements could include CRM changes, new computers, using applications that are compliant with NIST SP 800-171 requirements, and even newly designed contracts with your partners; the earlier you start to implement such changes the more time you will have to ensure you meet those requirements and avoid loss of business with entities that can only work with businesses that are NIST SP 800-171 compliant.
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A detailed look at NIST SP 800-171
NIST Special Publication 800-171 is a set of security requirements that may be added or referenced in federal contracts with the goal of improving the protection of Controlled Unclassified Information (CUI). It defines uniform policies and practices across the federal government and throughout all Prime and Sub Contractor companies conducting business with the US Federal Government. The NIST SP 800-171 requirements are referenced and added to DoD contracts using the DFARS 252.204-7012 regulation.
The requirements recommended for use in this publication are derived from FIPS Publication 200 and the moderate security control baseline in NIST Special Publication 800-53 and are based on the CUI regulation (32 CFR Part 2002, Controlled Unclassified Information). The requirements and security controls have been determined over time to provide the necessary protection for federal information and systems that are covered under The Federal Information Security Modernization Act (FISMA) of 2014 requires federal agencies to identify and provide information security protections commensurate with the risk resulting from the unauthorized access, use, disclosure, disruption, modification, or destruction of information collected or maintained by or on behalf of an agency; or information systems used or operated by an agency or by a contractor of an agency or other organization on behalf of an agency. This publication focuses on protecting the confidentiality of Controlled Unclassified Information (CUI) in nonfederal systems and organizations and recommends specific security requirements to achieve that objective. It does not change the information security requirements outlined in FISMA, nor does it alter the responsibility of federal agencies to comply with the full provisions of the statute, the policies established by OMB, and the supporting security standards and guidelines developed by NIST.
The final release of NIST Special Publication 800-171, Revision 1, can be obtained by clicking here.
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