What is an ISMS and why does your organisation need one?

Those getting started in the information security industry might be wondering why experts are telling them to implement an ISMS. We’re here to explain. 

An ISMS (information security management system) is essential for any organisation that’s serious about security. It’s a centrally managed framework that enables you to manage, monitor, review and improve your information security practices in one place.

It contains policies, procedures and controls that are designed to meet the three objectives of information security: 

  • Confidentiality: making sure data can only be accessed by authorised people. 
  • Integrity: keeping data accurate and complete. 
  • Availability: making sure data can be accessed when it’s required. 

Creating a best-practice ISMS with ISO 27001 

ISO 27001 is the international standard for creating and maintaining an ISMS. Its clear framework makes the implementation process relatively straightforward; all you need to do is follow the Standard’s advice. 

That doesn’t necessarily mean it will be easy. You’ll need to assign a small team to tackle the implementation project and give them anywhere between a few months and a couple of years to complete it, but it will certainly be worth the effort. 

ISO 27001 is becoming increasingly important for organisations to thrive. Cyber crime and data breaches are a real threat for all organisations, but an ISO 27001-compliant ISMS can help mitigate the risks. 

Even if you’re happy with your level of security, suppliers and clients might not be as confident. Demonstrating to them that you have met the Standard’s requirements can ease their concerns and give you a competitive advantage. 

ISO 27001 can also help you comply with the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) and the NIS Directive (Directive on security of network and information systems), as many of their requirements overlap. 

But whereas neither the GDPR nor the NIS Directive provide instructions on how to meet their requirements, ISO 27001 offers clear guidance. This means you can use the Standard’s advice to meet your legal requirements. 

The ISO 27001 implementation process 

You can find out more about how to get started with ISO 27001 by reading Implementing an ISMS – A Really Quick Introduction. 

This free green paper explains how to create an ISMS that meets ISO 27001’s requirements in a time- and cost-effective way. It goes into more detail about what an ISMS is and its benefits, and lays out our tried-and-tested implementation approach. 

The steps outlined in this guide cover the full extent of the project, from initial discussions with managers through to testing the completed project and pursuing accredited certification. 

Download now >> 

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