One of the services Amazon provides that is not really a service is compliance reports.  These documents are important to anyone that uses AWS for commercial purposes.  This particular service is also known as AWS Artifact and can be found at this link.  You can also look at the overview at this page.

Who Needs Compliance Reports?

A small business may never care about compliance reports.  However, these can be very important if your business deals in financial information, credit cards, or personal data.  The compliance reports provide documentation about your environment and can build trust in customers.  These documents are also important for a company that desires ISO certification or wants to pass a security audit.

This documentation does not guarantee a company is following all of the best practices for security.  However, it is a start and can provide some protection against legal actions and may be required for some business partnerships.

A Great Value for a Free Service

One of the best parts of this service is that these documents are free and can be modified.  This allows an AWS customer to get a jumpstart on their documentation with a customizable template.  Anyone that has ever had to create this sort of information from scratch will vouch for its incredible value.  A valid starting point on your environment can save hours or days of research and documentation work.

Useful, but Not Well Known

Like many of the AWS offerings, this is not one that is highly advertised.  Documentation does not have the same “wow” factor that virtual machines and cloud storage do.  However, this service is one you will be thrilled with if you need to show PCI compliance.  This is a requirement for companies that handle financial transactions like credit cards.  It is also a form of compliance that I find a lot of companies struggle with.  Compliance is not the larger part of the problem.  Instead, documentation is often the biggest point of pain.

The services Amazon provides are sometimes highly technical and hard to understand.  This service is not one of those.  It is also very easy to use.  Take a look at the page that lists the available documents.  Read the summaries to find the documents you need.  Click on the link and download the document.  That is all you need to be on your way with full documentation.  The customizing of the docs is often little more than changing company names and locations.  That is all it takes to look like you have a full IT available for your company.



Rob Broadhead

Rob is a founder of, and frequent contributor to, Develpreneur. This includes the Building Better Developers podcast. He is also a lifetime learner as a developer, designer, and manager of software solutions. Rob is the founder of RB Consulting and has managed to author a book about his family experiences and a few about becoming a better developer. In his free time, he stays busy raising five children (although they have grown into adults). When he has a chance to breathe, he is on the ice playing hockey to relax or working on his ballroom dance skills.

Leave a Reply