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ISO 27001 Information Security Standard Compliance: Understanding its Importance and Process

20th Dec, 2019
ISO 27001 Information Security Standard Compliance: Understanding its Importance and Process

ISO 27000 Family of Standards

ISO 27001 is a part of ISO 27000 family of Information Security Management Systems (ISMS), which contains a series of standards that focus on managing the risks related to information asset of the company. The purpose is to keep the information assets that are either crucial or confidential for the company including financial data, intellectual property, client and employee details as well as other classified information safe and secured.

What is ISO 27001? 

Being a part of ISO 27000 standards family, ISO 27001 is an information security standard that provides a framework which enables modern organizations to secure their information and data as well as manage risks. Risk Management, being one of the significant parts of the standard, is essential for an organization to identify the strengths and potential risks that can be posed with regards to their information security. The standard is also a structured process that leads the organizations to identify, establish, implement, operate, monitor, maintain and improve their ISMS. It encompasses all the legal, physical and technical aspects involved in the risk management process of any organization.

Confidential information such as intellectual properties, employee and client information must be kept secured. However, it is challenging to keep it secure all the time, especially when organizations are technology-reliant and therefore, technological and other security measures can be breached. Despite all the challenges, a sole IT department in an organization is not enough for data integrity and security, especially if the organization is spread across the globe with multiple organizations. An ISMS framework can help in streamlining data security measures to keep confidential information secure in the company.

ISO 27001 Requirements

ISO 27001 can be applicable to all organizations irrespective of their size and industry. It provides a comprehensive approach to security of information needing protection spanning from digital information, physical documents, physical assets (computers and networks) to the knowledge of individual employees. It also covers competence development of staff, technical protection against computer fraud, information security metrics, incident management as well as requirements common to all management system standards such as internal audit, management review and continuous improvement.

General requirements

  • Define scope of your ISMS as per your organizational needs
  • Prepare comprehensive documentation
  • Prepare clarified management policies
  • Demonstrate control on risk assessment and management

Documental requirements

  • Documented statements of the ISMS policy and objectives
  • Elaborate the scope of the ISMS
  • Procedures and controls in support of the ISMS
  • A description of the risk assessment methodology
  • The risk assessment report
  • The risk treatment plan
  • Business continuity plan

What are the ISO 27001 standards?

Before beginning the implementation process, it is necessary for the management and stakeholders to get acquainted with all the sections of the standard. Following are the 12 sections of ISO 27001:

  • Introduction – identification of the objective of managing risks and define information security
  • Scope – understand and prepare for requirements for an ISMS
  • Normative References – explains the relationship between ISO 27000 and 27001 standards.
  • Terms and Definitions – covers the complex terminology that is used within the standard, also the reintroduction of ISO 27000 standard as applicable.
  • Context of the Organization – defines the role of stakeholders and their responsibilities in the creation and maintenance of the ISMS
  • Leadership – describes the responsibilities and commitments of leaders within an organization with regards to ISMS policies and procedures.
  • Planning – provides an outline of risk management planning across the organization.
  • Support – describes ways to raise awareness about information security and assign responsibilities within the organization and staff members/employees.
  • Operation – provides insights into risk management and document creation to meet the audit standards
  • Performance Evaluation – provides guidelines on the performance monitoring and measurement of the ISMS
  • Improvement – explains the ISMS must be continually updated and improved as per the audits and rules.
  • Reference Control Objectives and Controls – provides an annexe on the individual elements of the audit.

How can you implement ISO 27001?

After understanding all the sections of the standard and fulfilling the necessary requirements, you can begin implementation of the ISO 27001 as per the following steps.Include top management from the beginning of the process

  • Utilize project management methodology
  • Define the ISMS scope
  • Prepare documentation – top-level information security
  • Define risk assessment process and methodology
  • Conduct risk assessment and perform risk management
  • Prepare the Statement of Applicability
  • Prepare and document the Risk treatment plan
  • Define the measurement of effectiveness of your controls and the ISMS
  • Implement all the applicable controls and procedures
  • Conduct training and awareness programs for employees
  • Perform all the daily operations as per your ISMS documentation
  • Monitor and measure your ISMS and its results
  • Prepare and validate business continuity plan (BCP)
  • Perform internal audit
  • Perform management review
  • Implement modified or corrective actions

ISO 27001 Certification

ISO 27001 Certification is for organizations from various industries. They can prove that they have complied with all the rules and clauses of the ISO 27001 standard and get certified. The certification body performs and assesses the standard implementation in various stages.

Stage one contains documentation review. Stage two includes on-site audit where the certification body checks all the actions and activities by the organization and checks with the ISMS documentation. Since the certificate is valid for three years, and ISO stands for continuous development, the auditors check the ISO 27001 compliance periodically.

Benefits of ISO 27001

ISO 27001 implementation helps an organization leads to –

  • Management acknowledging the value of organizational information
  • Increase in customer confidence, satisfaction and trust
  • Managing sensitive information of customers and business partners, and hence, increased trust of stakeholders and partners
  • Conformance to legal and regulatory requirements
  • Organizational effectiveness of communicating security requirements
  • Employee motivation and participation in security
  • Higher profitability
  • Efficiency in managing the security incidents
  • Ability to differentiate the organization for competitive advantage
  • Increase organization credibility and reputation
  • Prevention of confidential information to fall into unauthorized hands
  • Ensure data and information accuracy and access to authorized personnel only
  • International recognition and therefore, credibility
  • Improved management processes and efficiency with corporate risks

To help organizations gain credibility and trust from clients, employees as well as stakeholders and avail the numerous benefits of ISO 27001, 4C experts help in complete ISO 27001 implementation. We provide ISO 27001 Training as well as consulting to help you strengthen your ISMS. Team 4C consists of IRCA certified 27001:2013 auditors who have 15+ years of experience. Having provided consulting services, risk assessment and BCP documents to 100+ for IT and ITES companies; we have empowered companies to enhance profitability as well as credibility across the globe. Also, we have provided 5000+ hours of training on IT Security Management System (ISMS) to help them gain benefits continually. To incorporate ISO standards and implement ISO 27001 in your organization, talk to our certified professionals today.