ISO/IEC 27001

Information Security Management

Information security is a common concern for modern organisations, with the increasing volume, accuracy and value of data used in everyday business operations.

Information Security Management Systems (ISMS) involve processes, documents, technologies, and people that help manage, monitor, audit and improve your organisation’s information security.

Having an ISMS implemented and reviewed can bring many benefits to an organisation, including, but not limited to:

  • Securing all forms of information
  • Increasing attack resilience
  • Response to evolving and emerging security threats
  • Enablement of holistic security-aware culture
  • Reducing information security costs by adding layers of redundant defensive technologies

A key component to ensuring that any implemented ISMS is adequate and aligns with security best practices and business goals, the ISO/IEC 27001 international standard sets out a specification to which an effective ISMS must adhere to.

Robust Governance

In the last few years, governance requirements have become increasingly fine-grained, with information technologies now supporting almost every aspect of our organisations.

The role of information security in governance is now better, more clearly defined and increasingly recognised as an area of attention for boards and corporations.

In addition to the need for protecting your data and complying with legislation such as GDPR and the NIS Directive, ISO 27001 certification can bring value to your organisation where meeting the legal requirements of nations in which you seek business, and the protection of data is now financially prudent.

ISMS Development

Managing to prepare for the development of an ISMS can be tricky and involves everyone from management to maintenance staff. ISO 27001 provides a structured approach to developing your ISMS, which includes the following:

Scope Definition: The boundaries and applicability of your ISMS are defined, identifying all the assets, processes, locations, people, and technologies covered in scope by the ISMS.

Developing a Management Framework: Roles and responsibilities for key individuals, such as the Information Security Officer, are clearly defined and allocated.

Senior management is responsible for providing leadership and support for the ISMS. This includes approving the ISMS policy, providing necessary resources, and demonstrating a commitment to information security.

Risk Assessment & Treatment: Risks are identified and evaluated in line with security principles (CIA triad), using standard risk assessment methodology to determine the impact and likelihood of risks. A plan is also created to address risks identified through the risk assessment, outlining how they are handled (mitigated, accepted, or transferred), including implementing necessary security controls.

The business continuity plan outlines the organisation’s approach to maintaining business continuity during a disruptive incident. It includes criteria for identifying critical business functions and resources, and guidelines for developing and testing business continuity plans.

Implementing Security Controls: Implementing security controls identified during risk assessment and treatment will be adopted and executed, encompassing technical solutions, policies, procedures, and awareness initiatives that comply with ISO 27001 requirements.

Documentation of ISMS: Comprehensive documentation about the ISMS is made available, including definitions of ISMS processes, policies, and procedures, with such documentation accessible to relevant personnel.

Training & Awareness: Ensure all employees are aware of their defined and allocated roles and responsibilities in maintaining strong information security, with regular training programs to enhance awareness and understanding. All employees are responsible for following the security policies and procedures established by the ISMS.

Monitoring: Implement a system to monitor and measure ISMS performance, such as security controls, incident response and other efficacy metrics.

Auditing & Review: Regular internal audits should be conducted to assess ISMS conformity and effectiveness, compliance with ISO 27001 (2013 or 2022 standard) and identify areas for improvement. Regular reviews with management should assess audit findings and review security control performance, addressing non-conformities and implementing corrective measures to mitigate any issues identified.