There are many reasons for implementing an information security management system (ISMS), and identifying and understanding interested parties is crucial for an organisation to develop its information security.
What is an ISMS?
- A system of processes, people and technology that helps to manage, monitor and improve your organisation’s information security,
- A framework that allows you to keep information safe. It is based on an organisation-wide risk assessment,
- It protects the confidentiality, integrity and availability of information.
ISO 27001 is the international standard for an ISMS and can help organisations achieve their regulatory compliance objectives concerning data privacy and information security.
Who are the interested parties?
Interested parties can influence the need for certain information security measures or require a certain degree of information security.
To identify your interested parties, ask yourself the following questions:
- Who is important for your organisation?
- Who is interested in your business activities?
- Who would benefit from you improving your information security?
Interested parties could include:
- Employees, who need to understand their security obligations,
- Owners and shareholders of your organisation, as they want to be reassured about the security of their investment,
- Government agencies and regulators, as they impose information security requirements and check that these have been adhered to,
- Customers, as they would appreciate the reassurance that their personal data is safe,
- The media: news related to your incidents, and
- Suppliers and partners, which want to know that you applied their requirements and must be made aware of any new contractual requirements related to information security.
Why are interested parties important for your organisation?
Your organisation needs to consider the requirements and needs of all its interested parties, as they can influence certain factors of your ISMS implementation project, such as the scope and/or your objectives.
The most important thing is to understand what all interested parties want from you and how you can satisfy their requirements through your ISMS.
You must identify which regulations apply, and which contractual requirements you must meet. The next step is making sure that you meet your stakeholders’ expectations.
All these steps must be taken before you begin developing your ISMS.