What is ISO 27001 certification?

Organisations are facing increasing pressure from regulators, clients and the public to address information security, which is leading to a spike in ISO 27001 certifications.

The Standard describes best practices for an ISMS (information security management system), helping organisations address their people, processes and technology in the most effective way possible.

Organisations that gain accredited certification are able to demonstrate that they’ve met the Standard’s requirements. Certification also proves the organisation is doing everything possible to prevent data breaches, giving it a competitive advantage.

Currently, most organisations gain certification if a partner demands it, but growing scrutiny of information security should see more organisations taking the initiative.

The ISO 27001 certification process

The certification process has two stages:

  • Initial audit: Before instigating a full investigation, the auditor will make sure the organisation’s ISMS has been developed in line with ISO 27001’s requirements. The organisation is expected to present evidence of all key aspects of the ISMS. How much they need to show depends on the requirements of the certification body conducting the audit.
  • Full audit: If the organisation passes the initial audit, the auditor will carry out a more thorough examination. This involves an assessment of the organisation’s policies and procedures and a review of how they work in practice. The auditor will also interview key members of staff.

Preparing for success with IT Governance

Before seeking certification, it’s a good idea to conduct an internal audit to make sure you’re ready. This allows you to correct any mistakes without suffering the costs associated with a failed audit.

The problem with internal audits is that they are prone to bias. If you choose someone inside your organisation to carry out the assessment, they might feel pressured to give a favourable review to satisfy their bosses and colleagues.

You can avoid this by outsourcing your internal audit to a third party, such as IT Governance. We have a wealth of experienced lead auditors who will provide a thorough assessment of your organisation and identify the steps you must take to ensure you pass your certification audit.

Find out more about our ISO 27001 Internal Audit Service >>