BSI, the business standards company, has revised its guidance standard for information security management systems.

BS 7799-3 specifically assists organisations regarding the risks and opportunities aspects in the internationally recognised ISO 27001 Information technology. Security techniques. Information security management systems. Requirements. BS 7799-3 provides guidance on defining, applying, maintaining and evaluating risk management processes in the information security context.

The standard recommends that for an organisation to increase the reliability of estimating the likelihood of a security event occurring, they should consider using team assessments rather than individual assessments; employing external sources, such as information security breaches reports; unambiguous targets, such as “two a year”, rather than vague targets and timings; and using scales with at least five categories to ascertain risk, from “very low” to “very high”.

BS 7799-3 accounts for risks as diverse as whether the influences of a foreign actor are a threat to the organisation; technology failure; influences of domestic crime, including fraud; and the probable skill of an attacker, and the resources available to them. The standard includes dedicated sections for information security risk treatment, with guidance on how an organisation can monitor and measure their risk identification plan.

Anne Hayes, Head of Market Development for Governance and Resilience at BSI, said:

“Information security is the central nervous system of any organisation. When it fails, the financial and reputational impact can be devastating for small and large organisations alike. Unsurprisingly, businesses routinely cite information security as their number one concern.

BS 7799-3 was revised to work hand-in-hand with ISO 27001 in assisting organisations in evaluating their risk management processes. If ISO 27001 is the bread and butter of an organisation’s information security management system, BS 7799-3 is the knife to spread the butter.”

BSI say that BS 7799-3 is applicable for any organisation, but will be of particular interest to governance, risk and compliance personnel; security managers; operational managers; auditors; and anyone responsible for implementing the requirements of the General Data Protection Regulation in their organisation.


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