Salesforce Audit Trail

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  • May 10th, 2021
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Data branches are among the top concerns for enterprises and consumers, which arise due to cyber attacks. As more and more companies face crippling data breaches resulting in a rise in the compromised data. A single cyber attack may affect millions of consumers.

As per IBM Research, which appears as the Cost of Data Research Report, 2020, considerably increases the cost for your organization, and security measures can help your organization mitigate risks. As per the Upguard report, the cost of data breaches in 2021 is expected to reach $ 6 trillion annually.  

 So, the time is ripe to ensure security for your Software-As-a-Service (SaaS) platform with Audit trail and forensic analysis to protect the sensitive information of your organization and yourself. 

 However, security is a shared responsibility for cloud-based platforms. The SaaS provider only brings in the tools. Still, the onus lies on your enterprise to implement the best practices and the controls. Salesforce offers security mechanisms for authorization and authentication. An Audit trail only provides the event logs of the platform, but reading and analysis of the data must be done by you.  

 

What is the Salesforce Audit Trail?

 Salesforce Audit Trail allows you to carefully trace the modifications to your Salesforce org. It maintains a log of modifications related to sharing, security and personalizations, and data management, etc.  

 It offers to handle catalogs of modifications for six months by several administrators. It provides audit information of what all things are modified and the time when the modifications took place.  

 There are different ways to audit your Salesforce org.  

 

What are the Ways to Audit Salesforce org?

 The various ways are:  

  • Setup Audit Trail  
  • Login History 
  • Field History Tracking  

 

Setup Audit Trail

The Setup Audit Trail feature is available for administrators and users with view setup or configurations. You can download the Audit Trail for your org over six months.   

 

Login History

The Salesforce Login history tells you all about users logging into Salesforce.com, whether successful with the login or a failure. The Salesforce admin can monitor the login attempts to the Salesforce org.  

 It is also possible for the user to download the information on a GZIP file or a CSV file. The Login history comes in handy not only for general login history but also for other details such as Authentication Method Reference.  

 

Field History Tracking

 This helps to capture information on changes made to the fields. The changes can be tracked up to 20 standard and custom fields on an object, and which can only be viewed with history reports or viewed on the record’s history-related issues. However, the user must enable the field history tracking for the fields and use Salesforce Metadata API for a retention policy for field history.  

There are various reasons for adopting the Salesforce Audit.  

 

What are the Reasons to Use the Salesforce Audit Trail?

The reasons to use Salesforce Audit Trail are: 

  • Track Changes
  • Get a Holistic View  
  • Monitor and Report for Compliance  

 

Track Changes

An Audit Trail helps to track the recent setup changes made by the administrators to the orgs. It can list the differences in date and time (with timezone) and the username, and the changes made. This helps you in troubleshooting. 

 

Get a Holistic View

A holistic view of the key events in the application is provided through the Audit trail data and forensic analysis. Audit Trail data from Marketing Cloud provide raw data. They do not send alerts on key events/trends or even predict anomalies. The customer is expected to analyze the data with an anomaly detection tool.  

 

Monitor and Report for Compliance

Audit Trail allows for tracking user logins for compliance or any other issues. It is also possible to view changes to user roles or permissions and activity records using data extracts or extracts from REST API. Since the data is readily available, there is no need to perform forensic analysis.  

 

Conclusion

It is essential to audit Salesforce orgs regularly to diagnose actual or potential security issues. Auditing can be carried out in various ways, such as Setup Audit Trail, Field History tracking, etc.  

As your enterprise adopts Salesforce, security plays a vital role in safeguarding your data. Access is provided to fields, objects, and records through Salesforce Admins. An Audit Trail tracks the changes made to the organization.  

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