This article aims at explaining the best way an organization can avoid any kind of cyber security risks and ensure tightened information security.

How to Avoid Cyber Security Risks in Your Organization

There are many reasons why organizations need a strong information security framework to protect all their crucial informational assets and valuable data. No doubt, cyber-attacks and data breaches are increasing every day. However, not only cyber criminals are to be blamed for it. New research claims that employee negligence is one of the prime causes behind cyber security risks. Cyber attackers are prevalent everywhere and their job is to find security loopholes or vulnerabilities in the IT devices and information sharing systems of organizations and use them for fraud or attacks.

If you are wondering how to avoid the vulnerability of employee negligence and how to instead make your employees highly responsible for information security, achieving the ISO 27001 certification is the key. It establishes a strong information security management system (ISMS) and practices that make every employee responsible and accountable for the organization’s information security.

Key Findings About Employee Negligence towards Information Security

Here are some of the key findings explaining why employee negligence is considered the most prevalent cause behind information breaches.

• Risks arise because many employees work remotely on their own devices. They need to be provided with various accesses. If their work devices are not well protected, any work-related data or access becomes vulnerable to breaches.

• Human errors are a second common cause for security breaches. Accidental losses in data are also common and caused due to negligence or lack of understanding about data protection measures.

• Small organizations often fail to train their staff regarding how to detect spam or fraud emails, how to safely store sensitive information, and how to restrict access, encrypt data or set passwords.

With threats to information security continuously evolving, training employees to make them aware of the needed security controls and establishing a strong information security is essential. They should be regularly trained with the latest procedures, tools, and actions with which they can minimize the information risks emerging every day.

What to Do for Preventing Employee Negligence

If employees of your organization are really not taking responsibility for information security actions, it opens up chances for greater risks each day. Getting a concrete ISMS compliant with ISO 27001 standard’s regulations is the most effective for not only ensuring information security but also for making employees responsible for the security measures.

Here’s how you can get the ISO 27001 certification for your organization and at the same time, make every employee well acquainted with all information security controls.

Gap a gap analysis: Your organization needs to do a pre-assessment or analysis of the existing information security framework and compare with ISO 27001 requirements to know what is actually missing in it.

Documentation and Formulation of ISMS: The gap analysis helps in knowing whatever new aspects or practices are required for creating an ISMS according to ISO 27001 guidelines. You need to document the structure, functioning, or practices of information security under ISMS as that is a necessary clause for ISO certification. Secondly, a documented ISMS is useful in training and inducting employees about every measure or practice.

Implementation of ISMS: Your organization should put all information security measures into practice as per ISO guidelines. They can review their processes and IT systems to understand the effectiveness of ISMS in controlling risks and finding out the organization’s readiness for ISO certification.

Certification and beyond: When your organization has completed implementation and formal assessment (for assuring certification readiness), it is time to get in touch with a registrar or certification body. When your organization’s ISMS has passed the certification audits by them, it gets the ISO 27001 certification. It is valid for three years. During that time, you need to regularly conduct surveillance audits or internal audits to make sure that your ISMS is consistently compliant with the ISO standard and also continually strengthens your information security and employee responsibility.

Although it is true that information security practices are not simple to implement and require technical understanding, employee negligence is the biggest hurdle to overcome in ensuring your information security. Either they are not provided with proper training or there is no strict regulatory ISMS. Achieving a uniform and specific standard like the ISO 27001 in the organization can make employees accountable for the information security practices.

Author's Bio: 

Damon Anderson is the managing director of an ISO certification consultancy that helps businesses in a myriad of sectors to get their quality management, environmental management, information security and other various management certifications. He is a specialized ISO 27001 certification consultant and helps businesses fully understand this standard and get it implemented in a simple procedure and cost-effective way.

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Business Name: Compliancehelp Consulting, LLC
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