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CAIQ Consensus Assessment Initiative Questionnaire

Consensus Assessment Initiative Questionnaire

CAIQ is a resource that cloud service providers can use to self-assess their adherence to the CSA’s Cloud Control Matrix, a cybersecurity controls framework.

CAIQ is a 261-item yes/no survey that covers CSA’s Cloud Control Matrix’s various domains. It is intended to provide cloud service providers with details on their existing security controls, as well as the status of missing or inadequate security controls.

The CAIQ is a self-assessment tool that cloud service providers (CSPs) can use to document their adherence to the Cloud Security Alliance’s (CSA’s) Cloud Control Matrix (CCM), thereby increasing their security control transparency so potential customers can decide if the CSP’s services are secure enough to suit their needs.

The CCM cybersecurity controls framework, meant for both CSPs and their customers, outlines the industry standards and best practices regarding cloud security implementation and maintenance. CCM eliminates the need for organizations to use multiple frameworks and simplifies cloud security by compiling all the common cloud standards into one place.

The CAIQ yes/no questions correspond to the CCM controls. The questions break down each CCM control into clear actions that CSPs need to be performing to adhere to that control. Per the CSA, the CAIQ results are best for documentation and audit purposes.

A CAIQ-lite version is also available that allows cybersecurity professionals to more quickly assess cloud vendors. It has 71 questions that address the CCM domains. 

The 261-item questionnaire reflects these domains of the CCM:

  • Audit and Assurance
  • Application and Interface Security
  • Business Continuity Management and Operational Resilience
  • Change Control and Configuration Management
  • Cryptography, Encryption, and Key Management
  • Datacenter Security
  • Data Security and Privacy
  • Governance, Risk Management and Compliance
  • Human Resources Security
  • Identity and Access Management
  • Interoperability and Portability
  • Infrastructure and Virtualization Security
  • Logging and Monitoring
  • Security Incident Management E-Disc and Cloud Forensics
  • Supply Chain Management Transparency and Accountability
  • Threat and Vulnerability Management
  • Universal Endpoint Management

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