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COBIT, Control Objectives for Information and Related Technologies, is a framework created by ISACA for information technology (IT) management and IT Governance. It is a supporting toolset that allows managers to bridge the gap between control requirements, technical issues and business risks.
COBIT was first released in 1996, the current version, COBIT 5 was published in 2012. Its mission is “to research, develop, publish and promote an authoritative, up-to-date, international set of generally accepted information technology control objectives for day-to-day use by business managers, IT professionals and assurance professionals.”. 
COBIT, initially an acronym for 'Control objectives for information and related technology' defines 34 generic processes to manage IT. Each process is defined together with process inputs and outputs, key process activities, process objectives, performance measures and an elementary maturity model. The framework supports governance of IT by defining and aligning business goals with IT goals and IT processes.
The framework provides good practices across a domain and process framework. The business orientation of COBIT consists of linking business goals to IT goals, providing metrics and maturity models to measure their achievement, and identifying the associated responsibilities of business and IT process owners. The process focus of COBIT is illustrated by a process model that subdivides IT into four domains (Plan and Organize, Acquire and Implement, Deliver and Support and Monitor and Evaluate) and 34 processes in line with the responsibility areas of plan, build, run and monitor. It is positioned at a high level and has been aligned and harmonized with other, more detailed, IT standards and good practices such as COSO, ITIL, ISO 27000, CMMI, TOGAF and PMBOK. COBIT acts as an integrator of these different guidance materials, summarizing key objectives under one umbrella framework that link the good practice models with governance and business requirements.
The COBIT 4.1 Framework specification can be obtained as a complimentary PDF at the ISACA download website. (Free self-registration may be required.)
COBIT 5 was released in June 2012.  COBIT 5 consolidates and integrates the CobiT 4.1, Val IT 2.0 and Risk IT frameworks, and draws from ISACA's IT Assurance Framework (ITAF) and the Business Model for Information Security (BMIS). It aligns with frameworks and standards such as Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL), International Organization for Standardization (ISO), Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK), PRINCE2 and The Open Group Architecture Framework (TOGAF).
COBIT has had five major releases:
The COBIT components include:
Other ISACA Publications based on the COBIT framework include:
http://ecommons.txstate.edu/arp/345 (This paper applies a modified COBIT framework to a medium sized city).