If you’re preparing to build an information security management system, you’ve probably come across both ISO 27001 and ISO 27002.
Both are information security standards created by the International Organization for Standardization that explain how to create a robust ISMS. Both discuss the security controls that organizations can put in place to protect their data.
So what’s the difference between the ISO 27001 and 27002 standards?
While their purpose overlaps, each one has a different focus.
- ISO 27001 explains how companies can build a compliant ISMS, from scoping their system and developing policies to training staff.
- ISO 27002 focuses specifically on controls. It expands on ISO 27001’s Annex A overview to dive deep into the purpose, design, and implementation of each control.
But there is a lot more nuance to ISO 27001 vs 27002.
In this post, we’ll cover the essential differences and explain when to use each standard.
What is ISO 27001?
ISO 27001 is a standard that specifies the requirements for an Information Security Management System (ISMS). An ISMS is a systematic approach to managing sensitive company information so that it remains secure. This standard outlines the requirements for implementing an ISMS, including:
- Scoping the ISMS
- Conducting a gap analysis
- Creating documentation
- Training staff Conducting
- Develop policies and procedures
- Conducting risk assessments
- implementing controls to manage identified risks.
- internal audits
- Completing a certification audit
- Maintaining compliance through surveillance and recertification audits
Getting ISO 27001 certified is one way for companies to prove to customers their data will be safe. As an internationally respected standard, ISO 27001 is also one way for businesses to gain a competitive edge and expand into global markets. Organizations can become certified to ISO 27001 by an accredited certification body, which provides independent verification that the organization’s ISMS meets the standard’s requirements.
What is ISO 27002?
ISO 27002 provides guidelines for information security management. It offers a code of practice for implementing information security controls, which organizations can use to establish and maintain an effective information security management system.
ISO 27002 covers a wide range of security topics, including access control, cryptography, physical security, and incident management.
The ISO 27001 standard includes Annex A, which briefly discusses specific information security controls a company can put in place to secure their ISMS.
But while Annex A covers each control in a sentence or two, ISO 27002 goes into much more detail. It includes the objective for each control, how it works, and what companies can do to implement it successfully.
Key Differences between ISO 27001 and ISO 27002
Information security is a critical concern for any organization, and ISO has developed several standards to help organizations manage their information security risks effectively. Two of the most popular standards are ISO 27001 and ISO 27002, which are often used together. However, they have different scopes and purposes, as outlined below:
Scope and Purpose
ISO 27001 specifies the requirements for an Information Security Management System (ISMS), while ISO 27002 provides guidelines for information security management. The scope of ISO 27001 is broader than that of ISO 27002, as it covers the entire ISMS, including the processes, policies, and procedures that an organization must establish and maintain to manage its information security risks. On the other hand, ISO 27002 provides detailed guidance on how to implement specific security controls, such as access control, cryptography, and physical security.
One of the key differences between ISO 27001 and ISO 27002 is the certification process. ISO 27001 is a certification standard, which means that organizations can become certified to the standard by undergoing an audit by an accredited certification body. The certification process involves a detailed review of the organization’s ISMS to ensure that it meets the requirements of the standard. In contrast, ISO 27002 is not a certification standard, and there is no certification process for it.
Use of Guidelines vs. Requirements
ISO 27001 is a standard that specifies requirements for an ISMS. It is designed to be a framework for organizations to establish, implement, maintain, and continually improve their information security management systems. The requirements set out in ISO 27001 are mandatory, and organizations must meet them to become certified to the standard. In contrast, ISO 27002 provides guidelines for implementing information security controls, but organizations are not required to follow them.
Focus on Implementing Controls vs. Managing the ISMS
Another key difference between ISO 27001 and ISO 27002 is their focus. ISO 27001 focuses on the management of the ISMS, while ISO 27002 focuses on the implementation of specific controls. ISO 27001 requires organizations to conduct a risk assessment and then implement controls to manage the identified risks. The controls can be selected from ISO 27002, but other controls can also be used. ISO 27002 provides guidance on implementing specific controls, such as access control, cryptography, and physical security.
Which ISO should be used and when?
When deciding which ISO standard to use, it is important to consider the specific purpose and focus of each standard in the ISO 27000 series.
ISO 27001 focuses on the development of an ISMS, while ISO 27002 is centered on implementing specific controls for that ISMS. ISO 27005, on the other hand, deals with risk assessment and management.
To achieve compliance with ISO 27001, it is essential to follow its requirements and use them as a guide for designing and building the ISMS. After identifying the controls that will be implemented, ISO 27002 can be used as a reference to gain a better understanding of how each control works.
ISO 27001 and ISO 27002 are related standards for information security, they have different scopes and purposes. ISO 27001 is a certification standard that specifies the requirements for an ISMS, while ISO 27002 provides guidelines for implementing information security controls.
While there is some overlap between the two standards, they serve different purposes, and organizations need to choose the standard that best meets their needs. Using both standards together can provide a more comprehensive approach to managing information security risks, but it is not necessary. Ultimately, organizations need to determine their specific information security needs and select the standard or standards that best address those needs.