What Are ISO 27001 Controls?

by Sneha Naskar

ISO 27001 controls refer to a set of security measures and safeguards outlined in the ISO/IEC 27001 standard, which is an internationally recognized framework for information security management systems (ISMS). These controls are designed to help organizations establish, implement, maintain, and continually improve their information security posture. The controls are organized into various categories and are crucial for protecting sensitive information and ensuring the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of data.

What are ISO 27001 controls?

There are 114 controls in ISO 27001, which are divided into 14 categories. Here, we will briefly describe some of the key categories and provide a general overview of their importance:

  • Information Security Policies and Procedures: These controls establish the foundation of an organization's ISMS, ensuring that information security policies, procedures, and guidelines are developed, documented, and communicated effectively.
  • Organization of Information Security: This category deals with controls related to the assignment of responsibilities, roles, and authorities for information security management within an organization.
  • Human Resource Security: Controls here focus on ensuring that employees and contractors understand their information security responsibilities and receive appropriate training. Background checks and termination procedures are also part of this category.
  • Asset Management: These controls help organizations identify and classify information assets, maintain an inventory, and ensure proper protection and handling of these assets.
  • Access Control: Access control measures include user authentication, authorization, and monitoring to prevent unauthorized access to information systems and data.
  • Cryptography: Controls related to encryption, cryptographic key management, and cryptographic protection mechanisms to safeguard sensitive information.
  • Physical and Environmental Security: Ensures the physical protection of an organization's facilities, equipment, and data centers, including measures like access control, fire suppression, and environmental monitoring.
  • Operations Security: This category addresses controls for secure system operation, change management, incident management, and business continuity planning.
  • Communications Security: Controls related to network security, secure transmission of data, and protection against eavesdropping and data interception.
  • System Acquisition, Development, and Maintenance: Ensures that security is considered throughout the system development lifecycle, including requirements, design, testing, and maintenance phases.
  • Supplier Relationships: Controls here deal with managing information security in supplier relationships, including due diligence and contractual agreements.
  • Information Security Incident Management: Establishes procedures for reporting, managing, and responding to information security incidents and breaches.
  • Business Continuity Management: Ensures that organizations have plans and procedures in place to continue operations in the event of disruptions, including information security incidents.
  • Compliance: Controls related to legal, regulatory, and contractual compliance, as well as auditing and monitoring of the ISMS.

Implementing these ISO 27001 controls is essential for organizations aiming to protect their sensitive information and maintain the trust of customers, partners, and stakeholders. By following these controls, organizations can create a robust information security management system that adapts to evolving threats and vulnerabilities in the digital landscape.

ISO 27001:2022 Documentation Toolkit