What is ISO 27001 and Why is Implementation Beneficial for IT Governance?
Information Technology (IT) governance is extremely important in the digital age. Security threats to the organisation’s information, the information of customers, and the integrity of the IT system, are growing by the day. ISO 27001 addresses information security and is an internationally accepted standard for implementation of an efficient information security management system. Implementation of ISO 27001 holds several benefits for the organisation, of which some are briefly discussed below:
Compliance with Data Protection Regulation
Implementation of ISO 27001 makes it possible for the organisation to comply with information security, data protection, and IT governance regulations. As such, the organisation can ensure that it meets all regulatory requirements regarding protection of government, financial, customer, and sensitive data.
The contemporary business environment is highly competitive. Compliance with ISO standards, such as ISO 27001, gives the organisation a competitive edge in the marketplace over competitors that have yet to implement the standard. Trading partners, clients, financial institutions, and suppliers look favourably upon business partners, vendors, and service providers that have shown their commitment to IT governance and information security by taking the steps to comply with the requirements of ISO 27001.
Every IT or data security incident requires manpower, technology, and expertise to minimise the effects of the incident. Some incidents can cause embarrassment and affect the company’s image, as well as the confidence of trade partners and clients in the ability of the organisation to protect their information. A threat is not necessarily from outside. An employee can leak data by accident or on purpose. It is essential to have adequate security measures in place to address how employees access and are allowed to share data. Such security breaches can cause a company to lose money and clients. Though it is difficult to put a monetary value to compliance with ISO 27001, it is safe to say that compliance helps to reduce the risk of incidents and the frequency of incidents that could financially affect and even ruin the organisation.
Organisations don’t start out big. Most start small and grow over years. However, policies and procedures may not have been in place from the start and may have been developed in a reactive rather than proactive way to deal with IT and information security threats. Compliance with ISO 27001 enables the organisation to revisit its policies, procedures, processes, and overall management systems in order to create clear performance objectives, integrate the IT security management system with its existing management systems, and to ensure compliance with various regulations. It thus gives the structure required to identify roles, responsibilities, and accountability.
ISO 27001 Certification
Though certification is not compulsory, it is beneficial for the organisation in a number of ways:
- It provides documented proof of the commitment to responsible information security management.
- The certification can be used in marketing of the company’s image.
- It increases client confidence in the organisation’s commitment to information security management.
- The organisation has a framework in which to operate and against which to measure its information security management performance.
- It provides the organisation the necessary framework for meeting their contractual, social, and legal responsibilities regarding information management.
- Certification is already a requirement by many trade partners in Europe and certification thus helps to open new markets for the organisation.
What an ISO 27001-Compliant Information Security Management System Entails
The ISO 27001 ISMS provides a system for management of processes, policies, procedures, documents, technology, and human resources with the focus of improving the information security of the organisation. With it implemented, the organisation has documented policies regarding security management of information. It helps streamline information security management and provides a central place for its management in a cost-effective manner. It entails identification of risks, setting of policies and procedures in dealing with the risks, monitoring and controlling the risks, and reviewing the system in place to ensure ongoing improvement in information security management.
WWISE offers a range of expert services to help organisations develop and implement ISO-compliant management systems, including ISO 27001 ISMS. Our services are extensive and include integration of the ISO 27001 ISMS with the organisation’s existing ISO-compliant management systems, training, development of awareness programmes, guidance regarding every step of development and implementation, preparation for certification, internal and external audits, GAP analyses, and maintenance programmes to ensure ongoing compliance and improvement of the organisation’s ISMS.