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Governance, Risk Management and Compliance (GRC) for Safe and Effective Cloud Computing - Cloud Service Level Agreements (SLAs)

By:
Javier Kuong, President and Principal Consultant, Management Advisory Services & Publications (MASP)
Coming soon.. Please contact customer care for new schedule

Course Description:

Cloud computing adoption is a new and major global wave of activity in IT and business. Virtually many organizations, large and small, profit or non-profit have already adopted some form of cloud computing model or are seriously contemplating migrating a whole range of IT business applications and critical systems to the cloud model.

However, as has been the case in any new technology adoption in the past, there are very important GRC and Auditing and Business Continuity (ABC) considerations associated with functioning in a cloud computing environment. Unfortunately, these issues are typically an after-thought for those entrusted with the feasibility, assessment and implementation of the cloud initiative as they are primarily concerned with the Effectiveness, Economy and Efficiency (EEE) aspects of any new technology.

Moving many of your IT activities and critical business processes to the cloud is no trivial matter. As with any new technology adoption, cloud computing brings with it many new threats and risks. As a responsible executive, CIO, technologist, technology assessor, auditor, security, compliance, legal or procurement officer, you want to minimize the risks associated with engaging cloud computing services provided by a third-party entity. One of the key mechanisms to assist you in this delicate task is to diligently prepare “your own” set of Service Level Agreements (SLAs) that reflect your specific needs.

This highly interactive course will cover principles and guidelines of GRC as they apply to cloud computing. It will provide you with the fundamental considerations to assist you in the task of developing a sound and effective set of SLAs whether you are contemplating moving to the cloud or if you are already in the cloud, to assist you in renegotiating existing service agreements.

This cloud computing seminar will focus on the following topics:

  • Threats, risks and exposures in cloud computing
  • Cloud Service Level Agreements (SLAs)
  • Governance, risk management and compliance issues for the cloud
  • Classes of Service Level Agreements for the cloud
  • Practical guidelines for the safe selection of cloud service providers to ensure adequate GRC provisions are satisfied.


Learning Objective:

Upon completing this course on cloud computing, participants will learn:

  • The fundamental principles and guidelines of GRC as they apply to cloud computing.
  • The approaches and the key elements involved in preparing a sound set of SLAs for cloud computing.
  • How to prepare their own specific set of SLAs which can also serve to effectively select the most suitable cloud service providers.


Who will Benefit:

The course will assist executives and professionals in practicing responsible due diligence for cloud computing:

  • IT executives, CIOs, Systems and Datacenter Professionals
  • Chief Security Officers (CSOs), Chief Technology Officers (CTOs)
  • Security and Control Professionals
  • Corporate and IT Governance Officers, CCOs, CFOs
  • System Quality Assurance and Standards Development Professionals
  • Technology Acquisition Team Leaders and Staff
  • Internal and External Auditors
  • Technology Assessors
  • Management Consultants
  • Cloud Service Providers
  • Any User Department Manager Contemplating the Adoption or Use of Cloud Computing Services (internal or external)
  • Legal Officers
  • Procurement and Contracting Professionals
  • Treasury Department Executives Dealing With Project Justification and Financial Approval
  • Governance, Risk Management and Compliance (GRC) Professionals
  • Any Professional Interested In or Dealing with Cloud Computing Issues


Topic Background:

In a great majority of situations, organizations that have migrated or are contemplating to move to the cloud do so without an adequate set of service requirements definitions and GRC provisions to make the transition to and operation of the cloud arrangements safe. As a result, they simply accept the “generic” terms that most cloud service providers offer to all kinds of customers who may actually have individual GRC requirements.

It is absolutely necessary for responsible organizations to prepare a set of SLAs that apply to your organization, regardless of the “generic” SLAs that the cloud service providers may offer. The set of company-oriented SLAs is necessary even if the prospective cloud providers might not be able to meet all the SLAs that your organization would ideally like to receive from the cloud provider. Having a set of SLAs that reflect your organization’s needs enables the service buyer to calibrate the provider and receiver’s SLAs and determines those areas that may be critically important to make the agreement acceptable and also assess the risk of engaging a service supplier that is not able to satisfy important SLAs.

The need to define service level requirements applies to whether an organization is considering a public, a private or a hybrid cloud option. The SLA set will also be most valuable in selecting the most suitable cloud service provider as there is a tremendous variety of provisions offered by a wide variety of cloud providers who are just, as anyone else, learning the cloud game in the absence of universal and global cloud standards.





Course Outline:

Day One (8:30 AM – 4:30 PM) Day Two (8:30 AM – 4:30 PM)

Registration Process: 8:30 AM – 9:00 AM

Session Start Time: 9:00 AM

  1. Background - Cloud Computing - A New IT Infrastructure Revolution – Definition of terms
  2. A Discussion of Threats, Risks and Exposures in Cloud Computing– A Basis for developing the Service Level Agreement Package
  3. Cloud Service Level Agreements (SLAs) – Definitions – Service Level Agreements and Service Level Management - Why Should You Invest in Developing a Sound Set of SLAs?
  4. Governance, Risk Management and Compliance Issues for the Cloud – The Need for a Thorough Threat and Risk Assessment as a basis for developing the Service Level Requirements and Service Level Agreements
  5. Classes of Service Level Agreements for the Cloud: This session will address various classes of service level requirements to consider, such as:
    • Financial Reliability and Stability
    • Transparency – Accountability
    • Supply Chain with Multiple Third Party Providers
    • Life Cycle Integrity
    • Security/ Privacy/Compliance
    • Data Leak Protection (DLP)

  1. Classes of Service Level Agreements for the Cloud, Continued
    • Availability/Resiliency and Business Continuity Issues
    • Cloud Service Provider Certification and Auditing
    • Contract Negotiability – Exit Strategies and Provisions
    • Data Ownership and Disposition
    • Geographic Restriction Provisions for Sensitive Data residence and Storage
    • Integration of Cloud computing with Internal Business Applications,
    • and much more
  2. Practical Guidelines for the Safe Selection of Cloud Service Providers to Ensure Adequate GRC Provisions are satisfied
    • Using the Cloud SLA Package as a basis for determining the most suitable cloud provider
    • Identifying deficiencies in the ability of candidate cloud providers to meet all the most critical SLAs and assessing the risk to your organization of proceeding with less than an ideal provider
    • Key Steps in negotiating with cloud supplier
  3. Workshop designed to apply the knowledge presented.
  4. Through a guided workshop:
    • Delegates will break into groups with common interests and will be encouraged to develop a sample GRC plan
    • Delegates will discuss the types of Cloud Service Level Agreements that would apply to their own areas of interest
    • Present their findings to the class
    • Question and Answer period with cull class participation





Meet Your Instructor

Javier Kuong
President and Principal Consultant, Management Advisory Services & Publications (MASP)

Javier F. Kuong is the President and Principal Consultant of Management Advisory Services & Publications (MASP), an organization that for over 30 years has been devoted solely to consulting, training, publications, research and development in Enterprise and IT Governance, Compliance, Auditing, Security, Service Level Agreements and Business Continuity Planning. He is the author of over 40 books and treatises in the above fields of expertise. He is the author of a very recent book entitled: “Service Level Agreements for Cloud Computing – Guidelines for Selecting Cloud Service Providers”





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Cloud SLA Book Description:

Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) for Cloud Computing – Service Level Agreement for Effective and Safe Deployment and Guidelines for Cloud Provider Selection

The cloud is becoming ubiquitous and all types of organizations, large and small, profit and non-profit, have or are contemplating migrating IT applications, data and processes to the cloud.Responsible and due diligence minded executives, IT officials and cloud service users who stand a lot to gain but also much at stake ponder these key questions:

  • Do we know what our business requirements are and what should be safely moved to the cloud?
  • What are our service requirements and have we determined the Service Level Agreements (SLA) that will help us determine what “our” service needs are and not those offered and promoted by the plethora of cloud vendors?

Delegates will enjoy a 30% discount from the list price of $99 US and will pay only $69 when ordered in advance with the seminar. In addition, they will save the expensive air post involved if the book is ordered from the publisher: Management Advisory Services & Publications (MASP),www.masp.com, Tel: 508-299-7607. It can be ordered through ComplianceOnline with the seminar registration.



  • What are the Governance, Risk Management and Compliance (GRC) considerations of moving to the cloud platforms and the Service Level Agreements (SLAs) that will minimize cloud risks?
  • What are the security/privacy, availability and business continuity requirements to make the cloud option effective a safe?

This book is intended to provide the reader with a set of probing questions, mention the most obvious risk associated with cloud adoption and provides a set of comprehensive Service Level Agreements (SLAs) that can help organizations to define the service levels, negotiate agreements with cloud vendors and raise probing question on the type of governance and compliance, security/privacy and business continuity provisions that the prospective cloud vendors should have a d be in a position to “transparently” answer.

The guidelines in the book would ideally good for those contemplating moving to the cloud but also to detected deficiencies in the present arrangements for those reorganizations that have already move to the cloud and for subsequent future renegotiations.

Independent auditor and personnel entrusted with the major task of assessing the cloud paradigm will also find the book very useful and save them a great deal of time in researching and investigating some of the most important considerations of moving to the cloud with due diligence and helping ensure the proper GRC provision are in place as well as what is the significance to the organization of weak governance cloud provisions by vendors.





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