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Week 2 Homework

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IT Governance and COBIT framework

Yeng Lee

SEC 592
Professor Joseph Costantini
May 18, 2014

What is the relationship between IT execution and IT governance?
IT execution and IT governance are both related to the development of Information Technology. The differences among the two terms are their purpose and process. IT execution is a phase in IT development where IT governance is policies and rules to a project. In other word, IT governance is a whole single identity while IT execution is a step in a project. We will go further detail of the different of the two terms. But first, we will elaborate the term IT execution and IT governance. As stated above, execution is a phase in a project. IT execution usually comes after analyzing and planning phase of a project. Following the execution phase will be testing, clean up, and monitoring. In the execution or a project, it requires setting up responsibilities, time management, authorities, and control mechanism to accomplish the task. We will see later how governance does this IT execution. In the Execution phase, the project is carry out and complete. In the field of Information Technology, it can be anything from connecting a new network to upgrading an existence application or hardware to implementing security policies. As the project is being developed, executioner must refer back to the planning phase for guidance and error checking (Project Execution Phase, n.d.). Governance is the process of insure and control the series of actions, changes, or functions for proper performance. The important key factors of governance are responsibility, authority, and communication (decision rights). In an enterprise, governance defines the roles and responsibilities for each member. Governance also includes measurement, policy, standards and control mechanisms to ensure people are performing and meeting the regulation. These measurement, policy, standards and control mechanisms must be enforced, monitor, and follow up on (Magee, 2008). Combining IT execution and IT governance together, Governance is the rules, policies, responsibility and authority for accomplishing the executive phase of a project or event. Governance does not only apply to the executive phase but for the other phases of the the project such as analyzing, planning, testing, and monitoring. Governance insures that the project is exacted as planned. This includes the time deadline, the resources use, documenting activities, and the condition of the results (Project Execution Phase, n.d.). In IT execution, the governance states the role and responsibility. For example, the roles for a project might include the project manager, project teams, vendors, executive management, and other needed positions. Responsibility for each role varies. For example for a project manager, his/her responsibilities might be project plans, processes, and managing the execution of the project. While for team members, responsibilities could be executing, documenting, and testing. Vendors on the other hand could be supporting and servicing the project (Project Execution Phase, n.d.). IT governance also includes standard, guidelines and policies of the IT selection of the project. This provides the infrastructure for the project. Guidelines outline the policy for solicitation, source selection, and contract administration (Project Execution Phase, n.d.). Policy is used to support the management of the information technology project regarding to management principles, tools, and methods. Governance is used to promote control of the IT project by reducing risks and increasing project success (VirginiaTech, 2006).
Describe how the COBIT framework institutes mechanisms to control IT risk.
Control Objectives for Information and related Technology (COBIT) is used to support IT Governance. It sets framework for organization to ensure that the IT is working effectively such as to minimizing risks while maximizing performance. Most importantly, it is used to result the issues such as mandated control requirements, the myriad of IT issues and organizational business risks. COBIT is a sets tool such as measures, indicators, processes and best practices for managers, auditors, and IT users to reduce information technology risks, perform auditing and meet the organization's business objectives (Keller, n.d.).
COBIT’s framework assist governance or the control of IT risk in many way. First of all, COBIT helps information technology to perform and meet the business plans, goals and objectives. COBIT also establishes awareness of information technology risks and procedure to minimize the risks. Finally, it is used to track and monitor IT implementation, IT performance, impacts on business performance, and resource allocation to ensure business objectives are met (Keller, n.d.).
COBIT is consisted of six components to control IT risk. The first component summarizes the key concepts and principles of the COBIT document. Second are the frameworks which are the approach and elements to access IT risk. These frameworks are plan and organize, acquire and implement, deliver and support, and monitor and evaluate. Third is the control objective which states the approach, elements and process model to measure and plan for IT risk control. Control Practice is the fourth which identifies the best practice and control for IT risk. Fifth is management guideline which uses business and IT objectives to improve the IT performance. Finally the Audit guideline which provides guides on how to evaluate controls, assess compliance and document risks (Lahti, 2007).
The four COBIT Domain is where the new IT is setup. The first part is planning and organization which is the developing strategic IT plans is set up to meet the business objectives. Next is the acquisition and implementation where the plans is developed and approved. It also includes maintenance, testing, certifying, and identifying any change to ensure continuing performance. The third is Delivery and support which ensures that the implementation is performing as expected. Finally is monitoring which monitor the new and existing IT for any unexpected event and opportunity for growth (Lahti, 2007).

References:
ISACA. (n.d.). Control Objectives for Information and related Technology (CobiT) . QAP Advice & Audit. Retrieved May 18, 2014, from http://www.qualified-audit-partners.be/?cont=315&lgn=1
Keller. (n.d.). The COBIT Framework. Discussion. Retrieved May 18, 2014, from http://www.devryu.net/re/DotNextLaunch.asp?courseid=9719163&userid=5752319&sessi
Lahti, C. (2007). Sarbanes-Oxley IT Compliance Using Open Source Tools [VitalSouce bookshelf version]. Retrieved from http://devry.vitalsource.com/books/9780080557274/id/B9781597492164000045_para27
Magee, M. (2008). IBM IT governance approach business performance through IT execution. United States: IBM, International Technical Support Organization. http://www.redbooks.ibm.com/redbooks/SG247517/wwhelp/wwhimpl/js/html/wwhelp.htm
Project Execution Phase. (n.d.). 4.1 Project Execution Phase Overview. Retrieved May 17, 2014, from http://pmstats.dis.arkansas.gov/meth/07-execution%20phase.pdf
VirginiaTech. (2006). Policy and Procedures. Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. Retrieved May 18, 2014, from http://www.policies.vt.edu/7210.pdf

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