An information security plan is a vital component of any financial services firm’s cybersecurity strategy. Information security plans might differ greatly, but they always have the same purpose in mind: to outline data handling methods. Your information security strategy may be fairly complex, depending on the size and maturity of your firm. On make things easier, we’ve put up a detailed guide to developing an IT security plan for your company.
What is an information security plan?
An information security strategy is documentation of a corporation’s plan and systems in place to secure sensitive company data and personal information. This strategy can assist your company safeguard the integrity, confidentiality, and availability of its data while mitigating threats to it.
Why is an information security plan important?
In today’s evolving regulatory and investor landscape, organizations must have information security policies in place to comply with SEC rules, investor due diligence requests, and state laws. Furthermore, cybersecurity attacks are growing more widespread and complex. Aside from preserving the integrity and confidentiality of your data, there are additional legal requirements: every business registered with the SEC must have a plan in place, and other state or industry specific legislation may require your firm to have a written plan.
Making an information security plan:
Follow these steps while developing your information security plan to ensure it is thorough and fulfills the demands of your company. Remember, always talk to a consultant before making a plan.
Regulations and industry best practices:
As all firms are subject to oversight authorities’ requirements, your organization must first conduct a regulatory evaluation. There are also industry norms and demands enforced by external parties.
A lot of the pressure that many firms experience comes from external factors such as investors, auditors, or other third parties. They’re inquiring about the many activities you may or may not be participating in. They are requesting that you provide some of these additional services or tasks. There is a lot of pressure coming in, not only from regulatory authorities, but also from other sources that aren’t particularly regulators.
Create the team:
The next stage is to put together your A-team. Gather a group of people who are passionate about information security. They will be in charge of developing and executing your policy, as well as reacting to a shifting environment of cybersecurity threats, defining risk thresholds, and even coordinating funding. Make certain that this staff is well-versed in their field.
Check your inventory:
Simply said, know what you have. Make a list of all your hardware and software, as well as any current protections or controls. This stage is critical because you can’t effectively assess your company’s risk level or fully secure data and information until you know what systems you have and what data they include.
Perform risk assessment:
Determine the impact of cybersecurity issues and breaches on your firm. Would there be a halt to operations if there was a breach? Is it going to include damage control? What about regulatory penalties? Determine which elements are linked to the cybersecurity dangers that your company faces.
Classify and manage assets:
If you don’t know what you have, you can’t defend it. Identify and categorize your assets based on variables such as vulnerability, access, and storage needs. This information is required for developing policies and procedures that take into account the relative risk and handling requirements of various assets.
Create a plan:
Begin developing your reaction strategy once you’ve identified your needs and dangers. Outline the approach thoroughly so that your team can respond to cybersecurity breaches calmly and methodically when they occur. Include diverse departments, third parties, and clients in your strategy so that everyone can do their bit to remedy the breach.
Train and test:
Employees may be a valuable asset in the battle against cyberthreats, but they can also be a liability if they are not properly taught. Set up continuing training and test personnel on a regular basis to ensure they understand what to look for.
When looking at various sorts of information security plans or plans in general, if you haven’t done these things or aren’t proficient in them based on what we discussed today, it’s definitely a good time to construct or re-evaluate them. And it should be a cyclical strategy in which you examine the many activities that you intend to perform each year. There’s the policy side, the technology side, and the incident response side. All of these items should be evaluated and changed as required, but at the very least once a year. So, if you haven’t already, get started; else, you risk getting fined or worse.