Quality management in information security
Reliability, service and competitiveness through QM in information security
Dependence of companies on their very own IT and communication technology structure has become immense. In large companies, their outage means almost always complete downtime with regard to productivity and value creation. But also medium-sized and small companies have already become dependent on their internal (or also external) data processing to such an extent as to result in massive impacts in case of outages or problems with respect to their information security or even as to jeopardize their economic existence in such events. Hardware outages, data leaks or hacker attacks are solely some of these impending scenarios responsible and provident entrepreneurs ought to deal with actively. Constant quality management is one of the most important elements on the way to optimized information and data security here. As so often, the car industry respectively the automotive branch has been pioneering in its efforts here. They have already laid the foundation of the far-reaching prevalence of ISO 9001, too.
Prevention of negative outcomes through QM in information security
Implementing information security is not a one-time project but an ongoing process. Based on a comprehensive risk analysis, measures and guidelines are developed for preventing or at least attenuating negative impacts of problems with information security.
The protection and the security of data and personal information have also become tantamount to direct economic impacts on the company since the new GDPR, the General Data Protection Regulation, which is valid across Europe, came into effect at the latest. Data security breaches can lead to large fines and they can also be used by competitors for expensive ad hortatory letters.
Likewise, the costs which may stem from outages of the company’s very own IT structures are immense. Almost all departments of a company – from production to development and accounting – do depend almost entirely on well-functioning hardware and software surroundings. An unplanned outage is practically always tantamount to downtime for the company.
Aside from direct economic harm, improper handling of customer or supplier data may also cause damage to the company’s image which might entail grave consequences in times of social media and globally operating interest groups. A reputation that has become tarnished in this area is hard and expensive to remedy. A once acquired bad image could mean the difference between obtaining orders and not obtaining orders, especially when it comes down to tightly interconnected branches, like the automotive industry or engineering or health / nursing or logistics.
Not least have companies in Western Europe also been more and more frequently victimized by blackmail through cybercrime. That might range from simply blocking computers to the theft of sensitive data and it could cover everything laid open to cybercriminals through safety gaps. The costs of such occurrences are mostly immense and the damage to the companies’ reputations resulting if and when such incidents become known is even worse.
Positive outcomes of QM in information security
Aside from limiting negative outcomes, quality management in information security also has plenty of side effects that can impact relations to clients, partners or suppliers positively.
Actively realized quality management in information security is nowadays an important element for achieving a consolidated position in the market. It directly enhances trust in the respective brand and company. Clients as well as suppliers are assured that they are working with a reliable partner for long-term business relations.
Certifications in the area of data and information security may also open up access to offers and tenders that have been off-limits so far as they require certified systems.
Important standards and certifications in data and information security
Aside from the generally applicable ISO 9001, mainly the ISO 27001 and ISO 20000-1 standards specify the basis for active quality management in information security.
The ISO 20000-1 makes it possible to define measurable quality standards for IT service management. Based on the desired service quality, minimum requirements for the services provided may be determined thus. Dynamic tools for analyzing and adapting such requirements make it also possible to keep up the standards that were once defined on a long-term basis and also to adapt them to changing hardware and software surroundings.
The ISO 27001 is a powerful standard for organizing IT security management systems based on actual risks. Even though this standard is especially crucial for areas that are highly relevant in terms of security, like the finance or energy sector, it is still usable in a flexible manner, which matters also to companies of any sizes. The ISO 27001 focuses on data security but it also helps to display and handle cyber-related risks and financial consequences of IT outages. Another advantage of the ISO 27001 is that it is easy to integrate into already existing standards (like, for example, the ISO 9001).
More information security through quality management with PeRoBa
Quality management in information security is “no luxury” anymore nowadays but rather, an entrepreneurial duty. A lack of awareness of the risks existing today while dealing with information technology and data constitutes a direct risk to the economic prosperity of the very company and jeopardizes reputation, turnover and not least also jobs.
The PeRoBa GmbH in Munich is a long-term service provider working on all issues related to quality management, especially in the automotive and engineering departments. With our experience from these pioneering industries, we will be happy to accompany you also on the way to actively realized information security. Whether you would like to save costs, to minimize risks, to open up new markets – whatever your driving motive in this area is – PeRoBa in Munich is delighted to help you with it.