Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification

If you’re a contractor seeking to do business with the Department of Defense, you’re probably aware of the Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC) framework. The Department will require all Defense Industrial Base (DIB) contractors to achieve CMMC Certification at the appropriate maturity level by 2026.

CMMC is designed to protect Federal Contract Information (FCI) and Controlled Unclassified Information (CUI) that is handled, stored, and/or processed by DIB contractors. CMMC is being implemented to further protect the mission of the Department of Defense.

Now is the time to begin planning and preparing for your organization’s CMMC journey. Coalfire Federal is standing by and ready to assist your team on its CMMC journey with our CMMC advisory and assessment services.


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What Makes The New Process Different?

The updated compliance framework will significantly affect how the Department procures materials, goods and services and the requirements suppliers must meet. It will change things in several ways, including:

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No self-reporting

Organizations are no longer on the “honor system” regarding compliance. Instead, a qualified third-party assessment organization (C3PAO) will handle the process.

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Elimination of Plan of Action and Milestones (POAMs)

The new requirements stipulate that a promise to address a shortcoming in the future is no longer acceptable. Certification is now a more simplified and straightforward pass/fail process.

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Focus on maturity

Instead of check-the-box compliance, organizations must think more in-depth about becoming secure and staying that way. Increased vigilance will likely be necessary to achieve and maintain cyber maturity.

Maturity Levels Overview

The process lists five maturity levels, ranging from basic to advanced, to assess an organization’s cybersecurity progress. The Department will determine the appropriate maturity level organizations must meet when bidding on a contract, and a C3PAO will validate their qualifications. Entities will only be permitted to bid on contracts with a required maturity level equal to or less than their certified level. 

Review Maturity Levels

Preparing for the Certification Process

Meeting the certification requirements could be challenging for many organizations. Thorough preparation will be crucial for ensuring your business won’t be left behind when seeking contracts. The following tips can help verify your readiness:

  • Start early: It may take more time than you think to update your cybersecurity practices and make them compliant. Don’t wait until the last minute to make your organization certification-ready.
  • Become familiar with the framework: The CMMC Accreditation Body has prepared numerous resources for review that can assist with preparation.
  • Compare where you are with where you need to be: Complete a boundary workshop and gap analysis to assess your current preparedness level and determine areas for improvement.
  • Seek help: If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the requirements, enlisting the services of a C3PAO like Coalfire Federal can prove invaluable in your preparation and help you avoid common pitfalls.

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Why Should Your Organization Partner With Coalfire?

Coalfire offers more than two decades of experience in providing reliable cybersecurity and compliance services to a wide range of commercial and public sector organizations. We can provide the expertise and support you need to navigate the certification process and attain maturity and compliance. We also offer remediation services to help you identify and correct issues that could prevent certification. 

Coalfire has multiple locations across the United States to serve you. Contact us today to learn more about how our services can help your organization become and remain compliant. 

Protect the Mission with Coalfire Federal.


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