Can you imagine a world without access to information? In today’s modern world it is difficult to imagine such a situation. This shows how important the access to information has become for businesses and individuals as well. However, more important than access to information is keeping that information secure.
Information security has become a recognised and required business function in today’s globalised organisations, when in fact it used to be a “back-office” technical speciality. Rather than just a technology issue, protecting information is a business issue. Today, a vast significance is given to actions, plans and policies that organisations and individuals take to protect information. In today’s market where many cyber-attacks and incidents happen around the world, strategic policies, training, awareness activities and audits have proven to be effective to tackle this problem. All these steps make up a strategic effective programme called Security Programme.
The Meaning of a Security Programme
To secure information assets, organisations and individuals should implement comprehensive controls to protect those valuable. The collection of these controls that should be implemented is collectively referred to as a security programme.
The security programme provides a framework to reach and maintain a desired security level for your organisation by assessing risks, deciding how to manage them, and planning how to keep upto-date with security best practices. What such a programme enables organisations and individuals to do is to ensure the protection of confidentiality, integrity, and availability of assets, which is central to information security. If all three of these aspects are not protected, the consequences can result in business losses, liability and damage to an organisations reputation.
Integrity + Confidentiality + Availability = Data security
Introducing a security programme is a basis for transforming information security into a proactive action driven by the business leadership. A proactive Information security approach helps organisations to become confident regarding security. It brings structure and governance to the information security function, which can serve as a key element within an enterprise to support its business goals.
Another advantage of this programme is that it gives effort to ensure compliance to regulations that are related to existing and future information infrastructure. It also enables organisations to make mature decisions regarding risk management by delivering information regarding security capabilities in a business-friendly perspective.
Key Elements for Effective Security Programme
The purpose of the security program is to provide a big picture of how information assets are going be kept secure in an organisation, and to describe how every part of the organisation is involved in the programme.
For a security programme to be effective, it takes a transformation of security perception by considering it as an added business value rather than an inconvenience and an obstacle to effective operations. To make this happen, the security programme should use a top-down approach, where the initiative, support and directives come from top management and go along through middle management until it reaches the operational level.
- After the crucial decisions are taken, the following steps will ensure that the security programme is effective:
- Having a Security Officer: There should be an officer responsible especially for security programme implementation
- Assessing Risk Strategically: Crucial risks should be defined and followed with up-to-date industry best practices
- Policies and Procedures: Managing risk instructions should be defined with harmonised procedures
- Regal and Regulatory Compliance: Ensure that appropriate legal regulations are considered and met
- Continuous Improvement: Use follow up actions to improve the program (such as audits and management reviews)
With the increased regulation of the information infrastructure, continuous cyber-attacks, and the competitive market, the need for an information security programme has become crucial. By implementing an information security programme, an organisation will have a good guide to be compliant with regulations, increase the information safety, and minimise the risks coming from incidents and attacks. This programme recommends alignment with industry best practices and at the same time develops such practices.
Parker Solutions Group is a provider of professional training, consulting services and coaching across multiple risk disciplines. Among other training courses, it offers a wide range of information security training courses including ISO 27001, CLPT, CISSP, CLPI, CISA, CISM, SSCP, CHFI, CCFP, CEH, CAP, HCISSP, Cyber Essentials, and Data Protection Act Awareness aimed at those who are looking to build a greater knowledge as to how to build an effective and compliant Security Programme.
For further information regarding the Security Programme and Parker Solutions training courses and consulting services, please do not hesitate to contact Fitim Rama at firstname.lastname@example.org
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