Information Security Policy Ultimate Guide 2022

Information Security Policy Guide

An ISO 27001 Information Security Policy is required as part of any ISO 27001 certification. It is one of the key documents. It forms part of the ISO 27001 information security policy framework and in this article we will look at an ISO 27001 information security policy template that is part of that policy framework. We will also take a look at an ISO 27001 Information Security Policy PDF example and an ISO 27001 Information Security Policy Template you can download and start using straight away.

What is the ISO 27001 Information Security Policy?

The information security policy is a high level policy that sets out what the management approach of the organisation is. It includes some key elements such as management and leadership buy in. As a stand alone document it can be shared with staff to explain what they should be doing and with customers and potential customers to assure them you are doing the right thing.

How does it work?

You are going to have a pack of policies that are required by ISO 27001. This makes good, practical sense for a governance framework. It could all be in one document but there are practical benefits to having separate policies. By having separate policy documents, they are:

  • easy to communicate and to share with the people they are relevant to
  • easy to assign an owner who will keep it up to date and implement it
  • easy to review and sign off

Information Security Policy Template

Designed to save hours of work and prewritten and prepopulated the ISO 27001 Information Security Policy Template meets the requirements of ISO 27001 and other leading frameworks.

Why is an information security policy important?

An information security policy is important because your organisation processes, stores and transmits valuable data and information. To understand the value of an information security policy, let’s break out the data we are protecting into three parts.

Customer Data: what ever your product or service, you are going to be handling customer data of some description. It could be customer personal information, order information, technical information. What is fundamental is that your customer cares deeply about that information. They also care about how you are taking care and protecting it. 

Employee Data: you have employees and you have their most private and personal information. It is likely that you have names, address, bank details, social security and tax information, sickness information, performance data, pension information and more. Your employees care deeply about the protection of their most private information. 

Company Data: you have financial data relating to your performance, you have customer databases and CRM, you potentially have intellectual property or secrets about the way you conduct business. Your owners care a lot about protecting this to protect their profits.

How to implement an information security policy work?

An information security policy is a document that is created by the organisation. Usually created in Microsoft Word with the final version saved as a PDF. It will be based on best practice such as the ISO 27001 the international standard for information security. It will have key common elements within it that are standard across every organisation. The information security policy will be approved by senior management and then shared with employees to let them know what is expected of them. It may form part of annual employee training. The policies will be reviewed, updated and reissued at least annually. As part of most customer tenders and bids you will be asked for a copy of your information security policy and it will be shared with them.

How can I create an information security policy?

The easiest way to create and information security policy is to download and information security policy template and tailor it your organisation. By downloading a trusted template most of the hard work has been done for you.

This video on How To Create An Information Security Policy has been viewed over 8,000 times. If you are doing it yourself watch and learn step by step how to create an information security policy in under 5 minutes.

Information Security Policy Framework

The information security management system is built upon an information security policy framework. In conjunction with this policy, the following policies make up the policy framework:

Information Security Policy FAQ

What is the purpose of the Information Security Policy?

The purpose of the policy is to set out the information security policies that apply to the company to protect the confidentiality, integrity and availability of data.

What is the scope of the Information Security Policy?

The scope of the policy is all employees and third-party users. This includes permanent staff, contractors, consultants and third party supplier employees working for your business.

What is the principle of the Information Security Policy?

Information security is managed based on risk, legal and regulatory requirements and business need.

Does an Information Security Policy Include Leadership Commitment?

Yes. Having a statement in the policy from the Chief Executive is a good way to record leadership commitment.

What is an Information Security Policy?

An information security policy sets out what you do for information security. It covers the what you do not how you do it. How you do it is covered in process, procedure and operating documents. It sets a clear direction for the organisation.

Does ISO 27001 require an Information Security Policy?

Yes. An Information Security Policy is a key requirement of ISO 27001 forming part of ISO 27001 and ISO 27002 / Annex A.

Where can I get an Information Security Policy template and best practice?

A copy of the information security policy template and best practice can be found here: https://hightable.io/product/information-security-policy-template/

What is the definition of confidentiality?

Access to information is to those with appropriate authority.
The right people with the right access.

What is the definition of integrity?

Information is complete and accurate
The right people with the right access to the right data.

What is the definition of availability?

Information is available when it is needed
The right people with the right access to the right data at the right time.

What does CIA stand for?

CIA is the Confidentiality, Integrity and Availability of data.

Is the Information Security Policy required for ISO 27001 certification?

Yes, it is a required element of the ISO 27001 certification.

What does an Information Security Policy cover?
An information security management policy covers the following as a minimum:

Document Version Control
Document Contents Page
Purpose
Scope
Information Security Policy
Principle
Chief Executives Statement of Commitment
Introduction
Information Security Defined
Information Security Objectives
Information Security Policy Framework
Information Security Roles and Responsibilities
Monitoring
Legal and Regulatory Obligations
Policy Compliance
Compliance Measurement
Exceptions
Non-Compliance
Continual Improvement

How to write an information security policy

Time needed: 4 hours and 30 minutes.

How to write an information security policy

  1. Create your version control and document mark-up

    ISO 27001 documents require version control of the author, the change, the date and the version as well as document mark up such as document classification.

  2. Write the document purpose

    Write the purpose of the document. The purpose of this policy is to protect against loss of data.

  3. Write the scope of the policy

    Consider the scope of the information security policy. It should really apply to all employees and third party staff working for your company.

  4. Write the principle on which the policy is based

    The principle of the policy is the confidentiality, integrity and availability of data. It is about the security and protection of of confidential data.

  5. Write a chief executives statement of commitment

    Write a statement from the most senior person in the organisation about the organisations commitment to information security. Provide a date for the quote.

  6. Define information security

    Provided a definition for information security and for the terms confidentiality, integrity and availbabilty.

  7. Describe the policy framework

    Provide a description of the policy framework and the policies that are part of it.

  8. Set out the roles and responsibilities

    Create a definition of each of the roles for information security and what their responsibilities are.

  9. Describe how you will monitor the effectiveness of information security

    Layout the measures and monitors that you will use to verify that the information security is effective.

  10. Document your legal and regulatory obligations

    Working with legal counsel set out the laws and regulations that your organisation follows

  11. Define policy compliance

    Provide for how compliance to the policy will be acheived.

ISO 27001 Information Security Policy PDF example

An redacted example of the policy in PDF format.

Download Sample Banner ISO 27001

ISO 27001 Policy Templates

Imagine having every information security policy that you need, already prewritten with best practice that you could quickly and easily implement into your own organisation.

The ISO 27001 Policy Pack is designed to do just that.

Information Security Policy Template Overview

Eager to learn more? Check out these related articles.

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ISO 27001 ISO 27001 Toolkit
ISO 27001 Policy Bundle

ISO 27001 Templates Toolkit: Business Edition

ISO 27001 Policy Templates: Professional Edition

Stuart Barker

About the Author

Stuart Barker

Stuart is an ISO 27001 Consultant and author of the ISO 27001 Templates Toolkit. Over 20 years he has helped hundreds of organisations with the ISO 27001 standard and getting them ISO 27001 certification with a 100% success rate.

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