Are you considering the ISO/IEC 27000 family of standards for your organization? Are you curious about the purpose of these standards? Why would you choose to implement them? As it turns out, the answers to these questions are simple: the ISO/IEC 27000 family of standards are designed to help organizations keep their information safe and secure.
With the help of these standards, organizations can manage the security of their assets, including financial information, intellectual property, information and details about employees, and all other information entrusted to the organization or a third party.
ISO 27001 is currently the first standard in the framework family. It’s also one of the most focused on information security management systems. While there are more than twelve standards in the 27000 groupings, ISO 27001 is the one we are going to talk about today.
Benefits of ISO 27001
ISO 27001 is an international standard recognized around the world for mitigating information security risks. When you obtain certification to ISO 27001, it means you can prove to both your clients and your internal stakeholders that you are serious about and committed to managing the security of the information they trust you with.
Today, ISO 27001:2013 (the current version of ISO 27001) offers a comprehensive set of standardized requirements for an Information Security Management System (ISMS). These standards are designed to adopt a process that relies entirely on establishing, implementing, operating, monitoring, maintaining, and improving your ISMS.
ISO certification also ensures that you’ll prevent fines, loss of reputation, and information damage during a data breach. According to ISMS.online:
“It’s not surprising that organizations want to strengthen their information security posture to avoid a fine. But careful consideration should also be applied to the impact on the reputation of companies that received negative publicity from fines, or even just waning notices. This is likely to harm their profit margins for years to come.”
When you take actionable steps toward improving your data security processes, you also take a step toward improving the visibility and reliability of your business for years to come. Finally, ISO certification allows you to streamline and improve processes and strategies. An ISO 27001 audit requires you to keep your IT systems up to date, install new antivirus protection, and follow applications mandated by guidelines. While it’s true that a data breach or cyber attack could always happen, and there’s no real way to prevent it altogether, compliance is an excellent way to demonstrate that you’ve considered the risks and taken active steps to address them.
This makes you less vulnerable to a cyber attack and helps promote security and peace of mind for your entire organization.
ISO/IEC 27001 Certification
If you’re at all familiar with ISO management system standards, you probably know that certification is possible (and, in some cases, encouraged) but not mandatory. Some organizations choose to certify to ISO/IEC 27001 to benefit from the best practices contained in that certification. According to NQA.com:
“A good ISMS involves a systemic response to new risks, allowing it to grow and change alongside your business. Your ISMS must cover every information asset, and you’ll need to run checks whenever a new device or data set is added. The ISO/IEC standards recommend you follow a Plan-Do-Check-Act methodology to maintain your ISMS. The ISO 27001 will give you the framework to develop the methodology:
Plan: Design an ISMS workflow to assess threats and determine controls
Do: Implement the plan
Check: Review the implementation and evaluate its effectiveness
Act: Make any needed changes to improve the effectiveness of your program.
One essential piece of the ISMS is that you’re only being taught a method. ISO 27001 certification will give you the starting point that can keep your company safe. However, you can add to that as you wish. Some practitioners will layer a Six Sigmas DMAIC approach as well, to meet other requirements they may have.”
Still other organizations decide that certification will offer additional peace of mind to their customers and clients. Bear in mind, though, that ISO does not necessitate or enact certification.
As you can see, there are many benefits to ISO 27001 compliance. No matter what your company’s goals may be, falling into line with these compliance considerations is a smart move that can benefit you in both the short- and the long-term. One of the challenges with attempting to meet the requirements is the complexity of organizing your program.
Apptega provides software that can help you build, manage and report your cybersecurity program based on ISO 27001 or 12+ other standards. Apptega helps to simplify the complexity of ISO 27001, eliminate spreadsheets and help you document and report on an organization’s change and configuration management as part of its overall plan. Plus, with Apptega's Harmony you can see how your ISO 27001 controls overlap other frameworks you are required to follow like PCI, NIST, HIPAA, GDPR and more.
We’d love to show you more on how we could help.