What is ISO 27001 and Why Do I Need It?
The field of cybersecurity is changing rapidly, and the challenges faced by businesses are mounting considerably. Couple this together with the fact that the changing threat landscape is also growing rapidly, and these issues are further compounded.
It is now a question of not ‘if’ a business will be attacked, but when. How a business prepares for and reacts to such an attack can affect the business impact, and even, the existence of the business itself.
What can I do to combat this?
One of the aspects of cybersecurity that is very rarely taken into account is compliance. This never gets the same level of attention as, for example, data protection policies. However, it is equally (if not more) important than these other policies and serves as the cornerstone for properly addressing security issues. The goals of compliance can be described quite simply in a few key points; meet regulatory requirements, improve processes, strengthen security and achieve business objectives.
The question most businesses have is: “What is compliance and what does it entail?”. Sometimes the term can be confusing as it relates to two separate, but interconnected considerations; internal compliance and external compliance.
Internal compliance is about how well your employees adhere to your security policies. Analyse how they operate internally - do they avoid malicious websites? Do they adhere to your data classification policy? Do they follow a predefined patching cycle on the company systems?
External compliance refers to how your company adheres to regulations set by regulatory bodies and institutions such as the government, Central Bank of Ireland or the Data Protection Commissioner. There are a number of compliance frameworks and standards and depending on your type of business or the industry within which you operate, you may have come across some of the below: ISO 27001 – SOX – PCI/DSS – HIPAA - GDPR
While the majority of frameworks and standards focus on specific processes or specific parts of the infrastructure, there are some that take into account pretty much everything that could be related to risk, and so provide a holistic view of your business in terms of its security posture. One of the most widely adopted of these standards is ISO 27001.
What is ISO 27001?
ISO/IEC 27001:2013 (ISO 27001) is the international standard that describes best practice for an information security management system (ISMS). Achieving accredited certification to ISO 27001 demonstrates that your company is following information security best practice, backed by an independent, expert assessment of whether your data is adequately protected.
Ok, but why does my business need it?
The answer: there are many reasons your business needs to achieve this. Some of the main benefits are:
- Reputation: The ISO 27001 certification proves you are taking cyber security seriously and that you have processes and procedures in place to protect your data.
- New business: We see more and more organisations requiring that their partners and suppliers have approved security certifications in order to do business with them, with this requirement becoming a staple in most tenders and proposal documents these days.
- New markets: ISO 27001 has the same value and is recognised in any country because it is an international standard, so it will allow you to easily and seamlessly integrate in to new markets outside your normal domain.
- Compliance: Having an ISMS certified by an accredited certification body is indisputable evidence that your organisation complies with many other frameworks and standards, such as GDPR.
So do I need to do all of this on my own?
Of course not.
The journey towards ISO 27001 certification can be daunting. That’s why you need to partner with an expert who can ease your concerns, highlight areas to improve and guide you to your end goal. Ergo’s Information Security Consultancy can bring you through this in a concise and transparent way, ensuring your organisation becomes ISO 27001 accredited and help stay GDPR compliant at the same time. Our experienced information security consultants have vast experience in ISO 27001 implementations and will take all necessary steps in order to set up, manage and monitor an effective ISMS. My last piece of advice: download our guide to stay informed and vigilant. In an era where cybercrime and lack of compliance is hurting businesses immensely, it’s important you protect yourself, your staff and your data.