The Importance of Having an IT Security Policy in Place – Media, Telecom, IT, Entertainment

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Organizations need well-designed IT security policies to ensure the success of their cybersecurity strategies and efforts. The absence of an IT security policy can be the result of a variety of reasons, but most often it is limited resources to assist in policy development, slow adoption by management, or a lack of raising awareness of the importance of having an effective computer security program in place. .

What is computer security?

Good computer security prevents the unauthorized disclosure, interruption, loss, access, use, or modification of an organization’s information assets. Without information security, an organization’s information assets, including any intellectual property, are susceptible to compromise or theft. It is important to keep the principles of confidentiality, integrity and availability in mind when developing corporate information security policies.

Why is an IT security policy necessary?

The objective when writing an organizational information security policy is to provide relevant direction and value to an organization’s employees regarding security. The purpose of computer security policies is to address security threats and implement strategies to mitigate computer security vulnerabilities, as well as define how to recover when a network intrusion occurs. Additionally, policies provide guidelines to employees on what to do and what not to do. Here are some of the main reasons why your organization should have IT security policies in place:

  1. IT security policies define what is required of an organization’s employees from a security perspective;

  2. IT security policies reflect the risk appetite of an organization’s management and should reflect the managerial security mindset;

  3. IT security policies provide direction on which a control framework can be built to protect the organization against external and internal threats;

  4. IT security policies are a mechanism to support an organization’s legal and ethical responsibilities;

  5. IT security policies are a tool for assigning responsibility for compliance with expected information security behaviors.

What should it include?

IT security policies should be developed using a multi-tiered approach. In light of this, there are nine thematic areas that can be addressed.

  1. Acceptable Use Policy

  2. Data Privacy Policy

  3. Email Policy

  4. Mobile Device Policy

  5. Incident Response Policy

  6. Network Security Policy

  7. Password Policy

  8. Physical security policy

  9. Wireless Network and Guest Access Policy

The policies above are the minimum policies an organization must have in place in order to have a sufficiently robust computer security program.

As a first step in developing an IT security policy, begin to review current IT risks and vulnerabilities in your organization’s network. A good way to identify your risks is to have an outside consultant perform a vulnerability assessment of your organization.

The purpose of having IT security policies in place is not to adorn the empty spaces of your library. Computer security policies can become obsolete over time if not actively maintained. At a minimum, IT security policies should be reviewed annually and updated as necessary.

Does Employee Monitoring Help Your IT Security?

In today’s era of digitalization, there are countless data points that employees can access to edit, upload, or even share with others. As an employer, you will need to protect business and customer data inside and outside of office premises. In the same breath, your employees have the fundamental human right to privacy and privacy – so when implementing your IT security policies, it’s important to keep in mind that a balance must be found. In this context, as an employer, you may only collect data relating to an employee through tracking (e.g. Internet use or access to employee emails) under strict and only for legitimate purposes, processing taking place under appropriate conditions, such as where it is proportionate, necessary, lawful and transparent. This can be done through a section of the IT security policy that informs employees that an employer can access certain personal data such as internet usage or email when there is a suspicion reasonable to do so.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide on the subject. Specialist advice should be sought regarding your particular situation.

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