What is Information Security?
The practice of preventing unauthorized access, use, disclosure, modification, infection, and destruction of your company’s information is referred to as information security, or infosec for short. Infosec is also a common abbreviation.
These unethical business practices have the potential to have devastating effects on your company. Confidentiality, integrity, availability, non-repudiation, authenticity, and accountability are the six pillars on which the foundation of information security rests. These are the foundational tenets of information security.
According to this principle, the confidential information pertaining to your company should not be divulged to any third parties, including individuals, organizations, or processes.
Because of this principle, the data or information belonging to your company cannot be modified in any way without first receiving express permission to do so. It makes a contribution toward keeping the data as accurate as possible.
According to this principle, the information in question ought to be available or accessible whenever it is necessary to do so.
Through the use of this principle, it is impossible for parties to a contract or document transfer to deny that they have signed and/or originated said documents.
The application of this principle ensures that individuals who assert they are a certain person are, in fact, that person. It ensures that only valid messages originating from reliable sources are received.
According to this principle, it should always be possible to trace the actions that are carried out on a system back to a particular system entity, such as a user, a process, or a device.
Why is Information Security Important?
Taking immediate action to safeguard your company’s sensitive information is highly recommended, given the significance of the role that confidential information plays in the operation of your business.
You can easily picture what might take place if someone were to gain access to all of the confidential information that your company maintains. The consequences will be extremely severe. Your company’s reputation will suffer, and many of your strategies and trade secrets, along with a number of other damaging effects, will be revealed.
Your company could suffer significant losses if it were subjected to a cyberattack. Not only will the entirety of your company be at risk, but so will each of your clients and business partners, as the data associated with them will also be susceptible to compromise.
Bear in mind, however, that not only large corporations are at risk of falling victim to these kinds of cyberattacks. Most owners of small businesses hold the mistaken belief that their computer network won’t ever be targeted by hackers; as a result, these companies do not invest in information security systems.
However, the fact that most of the attacks are directed toward smaller businesses is the primary reason for this phenomenon. Even if only a small amount of material was taken, the fact that large companies have suffered losses as a result of these attacks brings attention from the media. On the other hand, for smaller businesses, the theft of even a small portion of their inventory can very likely result in the closure of their operations. Due to the fact that the stolen information may cause financial problems, it may result in bankruptcy.
As a result, the protection of sensitive information is of the utmost significance. To effectively oversee the security system, it is necessary to have individuals who are both professionally trained and possess a high level of skill. Any kind of infiltration that was initially allowed to go undetected will be stopped by these individuals.
In addition, organizations have a responsibility to do what they can to guarantee the successful implementation of an efficient information security system. It is critical to raise people’s awareness of the importance of information security, which can be accomplished through various types of training and initiatives. In addition to this, security policies need to be strictly enforced and updated on a consistent basis.
Information Security Management System
The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is responsible for publishing a management system standard that goes by the name Information Security Management System (ISO 27001).
The majority of organizations, which are looking for information security Management, adopt the ISO 27001 – Information Security Management System Standards for implementation in the organization in order to get ISO 27001 Certification. This is done in order to ensure that the organization meets the requirements of the standard.
Organizations that are serious about maintaining the safety and confidentiality of their data will implement ISO 27001, which is an Information Security Management System that can assist in this endeavor. The primary focus of ISO 27001 certification is to ensure the confidentiality of sensitive information. When an organization is in the process of putting in place an Information Management System, they will conduct an assessment of the information risk and then treat it by putting in place ISMS controls in the correct manner.
In order to obtain ISO 27001 Certification, the organization must first implement the Information Security Management System standard within the organization and then integrate the ISO 27001 requirement with the organization’s business process. This is done to improve the information security of the organization and reap the maximum benefits that can be obtained from ISO 27001 Certification.
ISO 27001 Certification Process
- Carry out the Analysis of the Gaps
- Establishing the Policies and Procedures
- Do Risk Analysis & Risk Treatments
- Create a SOA (Statement of Applicability) while taking into account the information security controls.
- Do Internal Audit Management Review meeting
- Coordinate your ISO 27001 certification efforts with the relevant ISO certification body.
Benefits of ISO 27001 Certification
- Protection of Data and Information
- Safe and sound procedures for the transfer, storage, and processing of data
- Risk Management
- Reduced risk and legal responsibility
- Protection of Private Information Enhanced
- Improvements in the organization’s overall performance of its processes
The end result of all the planning for security management should be the formulation of a security policy that can be put into effect and monitored. The beauty of a security policy lies in the fact that it offers unmistakable guidance for all levels of employees within the hierarchy of the organization.
The Top-Down Approach
When it comes to planning for security management, the top-down approach is by far the most effective method. This means that senior management must be the ones to start the process, and they will be responsible for the management of security in general. This strategy is sound because if you have a security policy but it isn’t supported by your senior management, nobody will follow it or comply with it. This approach makes perfect sense. The security team or department that is responsible for enforcing the security management planning or security policies needs to be independent in order for them to be effective. This team or department should be led by the designated chief security officer and should report directly to senior management. In this manner, it is possible for it to be free from any politically motivated activities that may occur within the organization.
Who are Involved?
In order to elaborate further on this top-down methodology. The general security management responsibilities fall on the shoulders of senior or upper management. The senior management team should view the planning of security management as something akin to a problem with business operations, and they should take their responsibilities very seriously. In reality, it is their responsibility to initiate and outline the security policy.
This transformation of security policies into standards, baselines, guidelines, and procedures, among other things, is the responsibility of middle management. In this manner, it will provide additional details and direction with regard to the implementation of the security policies.
After that, the operational managers or the security professionals are the ones who are responsible for putting the security policies into action.
Last but not least, it is expected of end-users that they will comply with the security policies. The top-down approach is demonstrated by the various roles that exist within the organizational structure.
It should come as no surprise that the senior management does not consist of information security professionals. In this light, there must be a group of working professionals to advise and assist those responsible for formulating the security policies. One of their goals is to inform senior management about the risks, liabilities, and exposures that will still exist even after the policies have been put into place.
Due Diligence & Due Care
In order to make an informed decision, it is necessary to perform the necessary due diligence, particularly in terms of planning and conducting research.
The concept of “due care” is primarily a continuation of “due diligence.” Do you actually put your security policy into action if you already have one? Or do you actually carry out the punishment? That is what it means to exercise due care, regardless of whether or not you are taking action regarding your plans. At the end of the day, developing, implementing, and enforcing security policies provide evidence that senior management has exercised appropriate care and diligence in their responsibilities.
In the event that proper precautions and care were not taken, senior management may be held liable for any resulting damages as a result of negligence.
Elements of Security Management Planning
A plan that follows these guidelines should be at the core of any security management planning:
- responsibilities of security positions
- outlines the procedures for the management of security
- determines which individuals will be in charge of each of the various security roles
- examines how well the safety precautions described in the security policies are working.
- analyzes risks
- campaigns for security education and awareness are regularly carried out
Types of Security Management Plans
There are three distinct courses of action that you could take. The first is the business strategy.
The function of security within your organization can then be specified using this type. One of the things that needs to be specified in the plan is the purpose of the security measures. The next step is to evaluate how effectively you are carrying out the task at hand. Following the completion of the evaluation, you will need to ascertain the current status quo of your security operation. This offers a planning horizon that can be utilized to either improve what is currently being done or keep things as they are.
It is important, when developing strategic plans, to identify goals and visions that are intended to be achieved over a relatively extended period of time. This kind of plan is fairly reliable and can serve its purpose for a period of five years. This section discusses the organization’s missions, goals, and objectives in relation to the security function of the organization.
The following type of plan is known as a tactical plan. In comparison to the plan that came before it, this one is likely to be effective for somewhere in the neighborhood of a year, so we can refer to it as a “midterm” type of plan. This type of plan provides additional specifics on how to achieve the goals and objectives that have been outlined by prescribing and scheduling the various tests, which are the specific tests.
The following are a few examples of tactical plans:
- Project plans
- Hiring plans
- Acquisition plans
- Maintenance plans
- Budget plans
- System development plans
- Support plans
The operational plan constitutes the final type. The duration of these is relatively brief. It is usually updated once a month or once every three months in order to remain compliant with the strategic plan. The day-to-day operations of your security organization are discussed in detail in these operational plans, primarily in terms of the steps to be taken in order to achieve the various objectives outlined in the security policy.
This type of plan addresses a variety of issues, including the following:
- allocations of available resources
- Demands placed on the budget
- Responsibilities delegated to staff
- Implementation procedures
Plans for product design and training are some examples of operational plans. Other examples include final plans, systems, and final plans.
Nature of Desirable Security Management Planning
In a nutshell, the planning process needs to be ongoing so that it can account for actual usage, development, and maintenance. In addition to that, it ought to be practicable, concrete, and well-defined. When dealing with these planning exercises, it is absolutely necessary to prepare for the possibility of changes as well as problems.
When done correctly, it can serve as the foundation for making an educated decision regarding the future of your organization as a whole.
In the end, planning is essential in the context of security management in general, and the process of planning needs to involve all of the important stakeholders in a close way.