Understanding the Key Requirement of DFARS Compliance in Detail

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Since the DFARS and CMMC compliances have rolled out, there is a commotion amongst government contractors working directly and indirectly with controlled unclassified information. Moreover, the scope and extent of DFARS regulation’s effects on the organizations are not yet clear. One clear thing is that there is no limit to what industries and organizations can get affected by the new compliances. Organizations from R&D to Manufacturing to Biotech will have to fulfill NIST 800-171 requirements to ensure government contract awards. The new regulation is also aimed at making the process of reporting cyber incidents effective. In recent years, more and more contractors are looking for DFARS consultant and advisors.

According to the regular, any organization, no matter how large or small, who does business with the Department of Defense, whether directly or indirectly, should comply with NIST 800 171 and go through the DFARS evaluation.

 Some Key DFARS 252.204-7012 Requirements

•             Audit and Accountability

The DFARS requirement entails that the organizations ensure that their security system and the process can be audited and have a detailed audit trail. The audit trail is designed to keep a record of all those working on the control and when. DFARS requirements 3.3.5 and 3.3.6 elaborate on how to build the audit report and what measures to keep in mind when collecting the data.

Information in the audit records is analyzed during the audit process. Thus, you should be aware of the report’s outcome and resolve any issue that was identified.

•             Identification and Authentication

Organizations that have not yet enabled multi-factor authentication for network and local access should immediately do so. You can either get multi-factor authentication (MFA) or two-factor authentication (2FA). Organizations should protect any system or network that stores, processes, or disseminates controlled unclassified information with 2FA or MFA. When enabling 2FA or MFA, ensure it doesn’t make it difficult for your employees to work. A good government IT services providing agency can help you implement inexpensive yet effective MFA/2FA.

  • Incident Response

The DFARS regulation requirements have been written to ensure that the organization can identify, eradicate, prepare, learn, and prevent cyber-attack or data breach incidents. Incident handling shouldn’t be treated as just another operation. One should make use of their operational knowledge and technical skills to create a mechanism to respond to the incident. Ensure that you keep reviewing and update the incident response plan. Doing so is especially essential if you have adopted new technologies to your organization.

  • Security Assessment

DFARS 3.12.1 and DFARS 3.12.3 have outlined the security assessment requirements. According to these requirements, organizations should regularly assess the environment where Controlled Unclassified Information and Covered Defense Information have been stored. If possible, one should consider implementing a continuous compliance platform into their cybersecurity plan. Besides this, make every person in the organization who directly and indirectly works with CDI and CUI a part of the program. Every personnel should aware of the program and assessment processes.