The international standard ISO/IEC 27001:2013 (ISO 27001) sets out the requirements for an ISMS (information security management system), an approach to securing information that relies on regular risk assessments to ensure the measures you put in place are appropriate to the threats you face and your risk appetite.
There are three main reasons to implement an ISMS:
An ISMS will integrate information security best practice into your existing practices, streamlining and strengthening your business processes to help you cost-effectively ensure the confidentiality, integrity and availability of your organisation’s information assets.
Independently accredited certification to ISO 27001 shows that your ISMS follows international best practice, which will increase stakeholder confidence in your organisation’s competence, give you a competitive edge and enable you to win more business.
Properly implemented, an ISMS will help your organisation meet its legal and regulatory compliance obligations relating to information security, such as the EU GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation).
Whatever your reason(s) for implementing an ISMS, and whether you decide to pursue independent certification to ISO 27001 or not, it’s important to understand the ways the Standard will benefit your organisation so that you can ensure you have the full support of your board. After all, the last thing you want is to lose momentum midway through your project when those in charge of the purse strings start to have doubts.
Why implement ISO 27001?
There are a host of benefits to implementing an ISO 27001-compliant ISMS, including:
- Securing information in all forms
An ISMS doesn’t just cover digital assets; its security controls cover all forms of information throughout your organisation. This is particularly helpful when it comes to demonstrating compliance with the GDPR, which requires all personal data to be appropriately secured, whether digital or hard copy.
- Improving your response to evolving security threats
Because it is based on regular risk assessments, an ISMS adapts to take account of the constantly evolving information security risks your organisation faces.
- Increasing your resilience to cyber attacks
A centrally managed ISMS will significantly reduce the risks associated with cyber attacks by ensuring that your staff are appropriately trained, and your systems and software are kept up to date.
- Complying with business, legal, contractual and regulatory requirements
With a risk-based ISMS, you can be sure that all the data you process is secured appropriately, as required by numerous laws and regulations.
- Helping you avoid the financial penalties and losses associated with data breaches
Data breaches are expensive, both in terms of reputational damage and regulatory fines. For instance, the GDPR prescribes administrative fines of up to €20 million or 4% of annual global turnover – whichever is greater. Demonstrating that you have implemented best-practice security controls will significantly reduce the costs you might face.
How secure is your business?
Take our free self-assessment questionnaire to identify your security gaps and see how implementing information security best practice could benefit your organisation.