How ISO 27001 Certification Helps Organisations
ISO 27001 forms part of the ISO 27000 family of standards, focussed on protecting and securing information assets of organisations. With ISO 27001 certification, it is possible for organisations to gain proof of their compliance with the requirements of ISO 27001. The certification is not compulsory but, as with certification for other ISO standards, it holds several benefits:
- Increased confidence of investors, shareholders, trade partners, and clients in the organisation’s ability to protect their information assets.
- Improved public image of an organisation that has met the ISO 27001 certification requirements, as certification proves the organisation’s commitment to protection of information assets.
- Ongoing improvements of information security form part of being ISO 27001-compliant for certification, ensuring that the compliant organisation’s security measures change and are adapted to protect against new and emerging threats.
- Cost savings related to information breaches and data losses, as the organisation has the policies, structures and measures in place to constantly monitor and protect against security threats.
A systematic approach must be followed to manage sensitive and valuable company information to ensure optimal security and protection of these information assets. The above also entails policies and procedures regarding people, IT systems, and processes of the organisation. ISO 27001 certification is relevant to any size organisation, irrespective of the industry in which it operates. A compliant ISMS provides the framework of relevant policies and procedures for managing information risks. This includes the physical, technical, and legal controls that must be in place. In order to obtain ISO 27001 certification, the organisation must undergo an ISO 27001 audit by an independent body.
The organisation must follow specific steps to develop the compliant ISMS for ISO 27001 certification purposes. These steps include the defining of the ISMS policy and the relevant scope. This is followed by the risk assessment and the management of the identified risks. The organisation must choose which controls to implement and then prepare for the audit. Implementation of the standard makes it possible for an organisation to benchmark their level of information security against that of their peers. It also makes it possible for the company to prove to its clients and business partners that it is committed to the protection of information assets. Implementation furthermore demonstrates that the management takes risks seriously and does the necessary due diligence to protect the information assets.
By complying with the requirements of ISO 27001, the organisation also stays compliant with the country’s laws and regulations regarding information security management. It furthermore helps to improve the quality assurance of the organisation’s information security system. With implementation, the status of the IT security management can be determined, and the relevant improvements made to ensure adequate handling and controlling of information security risks. Overall, ISO 27001 implementation and certification help to increase security awareness of employees, vendors, and clients. Before starting with implementation, it is essential for the organisation to consider the cost of the project. It is essential to manage costs of implementation effectively. As such, we recommend making use of our expertise in development and implementation of various ISO standards. This will help the organisation to avoid common pitfalls, budget correctly, set realistic timeframes for implementation, and adequately prepare for certification.
Keep in mind that the costs related to implementation are affected by the organisation’s perception of the risks that it must manage. The organisation must budget for four types of expenses, such as internal and external resources, certification, and the actual implementation costs. If not done correctly, the costs can become overwhelming. Internal resources include the various business function resources, such as HR, security, IT, and facilities. The external resources include the expertise of consultants to help to prepare for certification. The certification costs are the costs of being audited and certified by the approved certification agency. Implementation costs relate to the current state of the IT department, shortcomings that must be corrected, and more. Implementation of an ISO 27001 ISMS takes anything from two to three months up to nine or ten months, depending on the support of top management, the size of the organisation, the status of the IT in the company, the current level of documentation, and the nature of the organisation’s operations.
Call on our consultants to help your firm with the GAP analysis, planning implementation, and preparing for ISO 27001 certification.