In today’s digital age, data security is of utmost importance for any organisation. ISO 27001 compliance is a globally recognised standard that outlines the best practices for information security management. By implementing this standard, businesses can protect their sensitive data, reduce the risk of cyber attacks and gain a competitive edge in the market. In this blog, you’ll learn more about the benefits of ISO 27001 compliance and how it can safeguard your business.
In a world where data breaches are impacting even the most powerful global businesses, data security has never been more important. With the number of people working from home and in other locations including ‘on-demand’ workspaces, paired with the increase in cyber and ransomware attacks, cyber security and the safety of corporate data should be central to business and operations.
The highly-acclaimed ISO standards provide businesses with the information and guidance needed to ensure their data is secure, compliant and up-to-date. It brings together expert knowledge, consensus and international standardisation to provide solutions for all sorts of global challenges. Through guidance, coordination, simplification and unification of various criteria, organisations can take measures to protect their corporate interests while also accelerating growth by opening themselves up to international markets. In our view as advisors and NHS data protection professionals, ISO 27001 certification in particular, offers a secure choice for NHS providers which is also a win-win for health and medtech businesses.
But what is ISO 27001? Why as a health or med tech business should you really care? And, what is the real cost of non-compliance?
What is ISO 27001?
ISO 27001 is an information security management system (ISMS) that outlines best practice (as agreed by international experts) in a business continuity and risk management framework, supported by a range of policies and procedures to help mitigate the risk of a security breach. Using this agile framework to establish, implement, operate, maintain, monitor, review and improve information security management systems, organisations can safeguard their information assets and demonstrate their commitment to information security, gaining the trust of customers and stakeholders alike.
ISO 27001 encompasses more than IT and cyber security (often considered as part of the DSPT). ISO 27001 certification covers risk and opportunity management, security controls and governance across areas including leadership, planning, awareness, communication, monitoring and evaluation. Unlike the DSPT (for which there is currently no independent audit requirement for the majority of organisations), ISO 27001 is independently audited to award certification and provide greater assurance to your customers that the controls you have in place to protect information are robust and effective.
Why is ISO 27001 important for data protection?
With the number of cyber threats and data breaches on the rise, organisations are increasingly searching for proactive measures to safeguard their data. ISO 27001 provides a systematic and globally respected approach to managing and protecting sensitive information and corporate interests.
ISO 27001 compliance ensures that the appropriate technical and organisational security controls are in place to protect information assets and data. It also helps organisations to identify and mitigate potential risks or vulnerabilities, significantly reducing the likelihood of a data breach. Compliance with ISO 27001 demonstrates an unparalleled commitment to information security, opening up commercial opportunities or even leading to a competitive advantage in the marketplace.
The benefits of ISO 27001 compliance
The initial investment of time and money is far outweighed by the time, cost, resource and even fines, reputational damage and legal fees that businesses can incur as a result of a preventable breach. On an operational level, ISO 27001 compliance can help to improve internal processes and increase efficiency, as well as provide an agile approach to business continuity and information security.
For health and medtech businesses for whom the use of sensitive data and information is central to the success of its business model, they can be confident that ISO 27001 certification will be favourable to, and readily accepted by, data protection regulators, suppliers and commissioners in the NHS – and around the world.
Maintaining ISO 27001 compliance
While these policies, processes and procedures are essential to ensure compliance, maintaining compliance as part of the business-as-usual operations requires ongoing effort and commitment from across the organisation. It sometimes requires a culture change, but more often than not, will certainly need a shift in thinking to ensure teams understand its real value in terms of business retention and development; and the implications of not complying, both for them and the business.
Regular risk assessments and audits should be conducted to identify any potential vulnerabilities or areas for improvement. Employee training and awareness programs are central to this to ensure that everyone in the organisation understands their role in maintaining information security standards. Additionally, regular updates and reviews of policies and procedures should be conducted to ensure that they remain relevant and effective. At 8foldGovernance, we have robust systems and processes to support health and medtech businesses to remain compliant.
How can we help you?
Our team of in-house experts will work with you using shared project management boards to deliver and streamline your ISO compliance efficiently, and with minimal disruption to your business. We’ll implement the relevant Information Security Management System (ISMS) or Quality/ Risk Management System using bespoke policies and procedures.
Discover how 8fold can support your ISO 27001 compliance journey and protect your business. Book a call with a member of our team today.