Undergoing a Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC) assessment is a mandatory component for organizations and Department of Defense (DoD) contractors who are to work with the DoD. Not only is CMMC a prerequisite before being awarded a DoD contract, becoming CMMC certified provides the DoD verification that your company has implemented appropriate cybersecurity practices and processes to safeguard Federal Contract Information (FCI) and Controlled Unclassified Information (CUI).
The CMMC is a set of security standards and requirements mandated by the DoD for all vendors. The CMMC aims to reduce the risk and enforce protection of sensitive unclassified information that is shared by the DoD with its contractors and subcontractors.
Here is a quick guide to preparing for a CMMC assessment.
Know Your CMMC Target Level
One of the first steps to preparing for a CMMC assessment is to identify the correct level of certification required for your company and the contracts desired to attain. The three levels of assessment include Foundational, Advanced and Expert. Identifying which CMMC level your company needs to prepare for will save a considerable amount of time, money, and resources. Check out our guide to the CMMC 2.0 model to better understand which level of assessment is right for you.
Scoping Your Assessment
Once you have determined the appropriate CMMC level for your business, the next step is to determine the scope of the assessment and document it. Scoping is a key step to identifying and including only the areas of operations that are necessary when contracting with the DoD. The scope of the assessment will represent the boundary for which the CMMC certificate will be issued.
Documentation Saves Time and Money
Documentation is a curial and necessary component in a CMMC assessment. When bringing in a RPO or C3PAO, like MindPoint Group, having complete and accurate documentation will provide assessors a clear understanding of the company's current operating level, justification of the chosen CMMC level, and the scope of the assessment. This saves time, money, and resources for your company.
CMMC Assessment Process
Depending on the assessment procedure(s), the assessors’ focus will span one or multiple areas. First, assessors will review all relevant documentation and examine supporting evidence for implementations. Secondly, assessors will conduct interviews with control owner(s). Thirdly, specific procedures implementations will be tested for effectiveness.
You can further prepare your company for the full assessment by identifying key roles, control owners, and evidence requirements. Additionally, testing control requirements via a self-assessment ahead of time, whether it involves policy and procedure documentation or a technical control, will help identify areas of weakness and improvements to be completed prior to an official assessment. This will help avoid potential issues and delays during the full certification assessment.
Please review the CMMC Accreditation Body and FAQ for additional information.
The tips above will help you and your company successfully prepare for a CMMC assessment. For an in depth look on the assessment process and assistance on determining your company's operating level, be sure to reach out to our team at MindPoint Group. We have the experience and expertise to help your organization attain its cybersecurity needs.