Information Security

Creating an Information Security Process

Creating an information security process is more than just a good idea - it's essential in helping your business achieve its information security objectives. Here's a proven framework for defining an ongoing information security process for small businesses.

Neglecting the security of your company's sensitive data and information is the equivalent of small business suicide.

Creating an Information Security Process

A single security breach can bring a mountain of headaches and negative publicity careening down on your organization. Make no mistake about it . . . Hackers are out there and they would like nothing more than to infiltrate your data network.

When it comes to information security, the best defense is a good offense. The more you can do to proactively protect your information and data, the harder it will be for intruders to penetrate and exploit your system.

Creating an information security process is a smart move, regardless of the size of your organization. Even a sole proprietorship working from a single laptop should minimize risk by implementing a carefully defined security process. If the concept of an information security process is new to you, here are a few tips to help you get started.

Step 1: Conduct a Risk Assessment.

The road to securing your organization's information and data begins by conducting a risk assessment. During this initial stage of the process, you'll want to identify the threats, vulnerabilities and potential consequences that are associated with your information system.

Step 2: Develop an information security strategy.

The next step is to develop a comprehensive information security strategy. Company leadership should define a set of policies, procedures and security solutions that will be implemented at every level of the organization.

Step 3: Implement controls.

Security strategies aren't foolproof. To be effective, you will need to design a system of controls that emphasize rules, responsibilities and accountability mechanisms. Responsibility for maintaining controls falls on senior management and may even require board level involvement.

Step 4: Perform ongoing security monitoring.

You'll also need to establish a process for monitoring the effectiveness of the controls you have established. For total efficiency, your monitoring activities should culminate in a process for recommending and executing changes to your security strategy.

Step 5: Update the process regularly.

Security threats are highly dynamic. That means your security strategy must evolve accordingly though systemic evaluations occurring at predefined intervals.

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