Information has become an essential competitive factor in today’s world. The speed and volume with which information can be processed today are enormous. But only those who have access to their information at all times and protect this access from unauthorized persons can keep up with the competition. Your importance to the information security topic allows your stakeholders to conclude the quality management in your company. Therefore, in a robust competitive environment, it is critical whether and how you manage your information. In this article, we want to show you why an information management system is so essential for you and where the typical weak points are.
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Information Security – That’s What The IT Department Does, Right?
One could assume that the IT department only sees information security as occupational therapy. However, there are at least three reasons why the issue concerns everyone in the company and not just a tiny part of the workforce:
- The information does not only come in electronic form.
- Information comes in paper, spoken, video, audio, etc., forms. They are transmitted in various ways: by email, by fax, by post, in a personal conversation, etc.
- Information has specific protection goals such as confidentiality, availability and integrity, which have been laid down in the international standard, the ISO norm 27001.
- External and internal requirements make you need to deal with information security. Not only due to laws, non-compliance with which can result in high fines, but also due to client requirements, etc.
This shows that information security requires management and is a top priority.
Typical Vulnerabilities When There Is No Information Security Management
The risks of not giving importance to information security can be life-threatening for companies of all sizes. Below are some scenarios that could be potential incidents in your company :
No order and no concept for the secure storage of non-digital information
Suppose a clerk processes customer orders all day. These customer orders always end up in the same pile on the desk, which is only filed at the end of the day. Suppose this clerk has to leave his desk during a customer meeting to consult a colleague in the next room. In that case, the customer potentially has access to the order data of previous customers. The confidentiality of information is not guaranteed.
Employees who are unaware of potentially malicious attacks from the Internet
While antivirus programs can provide initial protection, they can also be risky when employees rely solely on their functionality. If employees do not understand how viruses or Trojans can be installed via email, the virus scanner will not help if the latest update does not yet know the latest viruses. You cannot rely solely on technical measures. In addition to the technical precautions, you must create an awareness and understanding among your employees of how outsiders can gain access to information. A Trojan horse can not only put the confidentiality of your company data to the test but also violate the availability and integrity of destroyed or manipulated data.
Inadequate protection against burglars
Information security includes protecting the information itself and the environment: Unauthorized persons can quickly gain access to devices and the information on them through tilted windows or unlocked doors. It is then not only interesting how quickly you notice this device or hardware loss but also whether you can determine which data was associated with the theft. The same applies in the event of a fire.
No role and rights concept
Information misuse can also occur internally and must not be triggered by external influences. If the company does not regulate which employees have rights or what access, data can easily be manipulated – even through ignorance – by, e.g. B. extensions or programs are installed, changing other data and systems.
This Is How An Information Security Management System Can Help You.
An information management system would start at many different points to best protect you against the security risks described above, including through:
- Defining the information security objectives and documentation
- Role and rights concepts for electronic systems
- Definition of action plans and regular control and adjustment of these
- Maintenance schedules for electronic systems
- Introduction of an emergency plan
One way for your company to become more aware of the risks involved in handling data (analogue and digital) and to achieve a higher level of security when operating data processing systems is to introduce an information security management system. The ISO 27001 standard offers a good starting point for this.
What Is Your Risk?
Information security is always about risk reduction. Just ask yourself the following:
- What can happen if information from your company gets into the hands of unauthorized third parties?
- What are the consequences if the information is technically modified or lost?
- Would everyday work be able to continue as standard if important computers and systems were to fail?
If you now find that you have not adequately secured yourself against these incidents, do not hesitate to contact us. We would happily support you in introducing an information security management system.