Understanding the Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification
In today's interconnected world, organizations manage a complex array of applications and technologies.
These organizations, especially those in the defense and manufacturing sectors, face an ever-expanding digital landscape with elevated cybersecurity risks — making advanced measures crucial for safeguarding sensitive information.
This is the backdrop against which the Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC) was conceived.
What is CMMC?
The Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC) is an evolving cybersecurity standard spearheaded by the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD). It aims to fortify cybersecurity protocols among manufacturers and other entities within the Defense Industrial Base (DIB). Although the regulations are still under development, once ratified, CMMC compliance will become a mandatory requirement for all defense contractors and subcontractors.
CMMC is structured around two pivotal components:
Depending on the type and sensitivity of government information a company handles, CMMC mandates a progressively higher level of cybersecurity measures. The greater the sensitivity of the data, the more stringent the required security verification.
Compliance isn't just claimed, it must be proven. Companies are subjected to an independent evaluation of their cybersecurity measures by Certified Third-Party Assessment Organizations (C3PAOs). These organizations are accredited by the CMMC Accreditation Board and ensure that all cybersecurity standards are fully implemented. Due to the thoroughness of this assessment, it's advised to begin this process even before the official standards are released.
Who Needs CMMC Compliance?
CMMC isn't just for large corporations; it applies universally to any organization – regardless of size – that wishes to partake in defense contracts. Even small businesses indirectly contributing products or services to DoD projects must adhere to CMMC standards. In essence, if an organization earns revenue from any defense-related contract, whether as a primary contractor or a subcontractor at any tier, CMMC becomes obligatory.
When Does CMMC Become Effective?
While the CMMC guidelines were finalized in May 2023, the DoD anticipates that all its contractors will need to be CMMC-certified by 2026. However, some entities might see these rules applied as early as 2024. Given that CMMC compliance can be a time-consuming endeavor – taking 10-18 months even for tech-savvy organizations – it's crucial to commence your compliance journey now.
Not Sure Where You Stand?
Our CMMC Survey will guide you through a brief assessment of your current status and help you to determine your next steps in achieving CMMC compliance.
Please note that this tool is meant to be a starting point for evaluating your readiness for a CMMC audit and not a comprehensive assessment. The Clark Schaefer Consulting team has several CMMC experts who can answer any questions and dive deeper into how to prepare for a CMMC audit.
Why is CMMC Crucial?
In an age where cybercrime is estimated to siphon off over $10.5 trillion, robust cybersecurity measures are indispensable. CMMC was developed to create a "defense-in-depth" strategy, emphasizing not just reactive but proactive cybersecurity measures.
Do Non-Government Entities Need CMMC?
While CMMC is directed at defense contractors, its core principles serve as best practices for cybersecurity in any industry. In fact, it's speculated that in the coming years, CMMC could emerge as a standard prerequisite for various sectors, including Cybersecurity Insurance.
Helpful Links from the Department of Defense
How Can We Help?
The CMMC is a critical new standard that DoD contractors must meet. As an experienced CMMC Registered Practitioner Organization (RPO), our experts guide organizations through the entire CMMC process to achieve certification.
The team of experts at Clark Schaefer Consulting are here to help you stay on top of all the latest CMMC developments. Complete the form below and an expert will be in touch shortly.
Our CMMC services include:
Readiness Assessments: We evaluate your current security posture against CMMC requirements and identify gaps.
Remediation Planning: We create a roadmap to close gaps and improve maturity over time, prioritizing high-risk areas.
Evidence Build: We assist with developing documentation and artifacts to prove compliance with CMMC controls.
Mock Assessments: We conduct trial assessments and interviews to validate CMMC readiness.
Sustainment: We provide ongoing support, monitoring and assessments to maintain your CMMC certification over time.