Design Information Security Policies the Right Way
Identify your security needs
The first thing you need to do is to identify potential risks and security requirements at your organization. Consider the kind of data that is stored and shared on your organization’s computers. Is there any other sensitive information that needs to be restricted?Are large files shared regularly? Assess if there are harmful emails or attachments being circulated in your organization. Once you have your answers to all these questions, you are ready to design an information security policy for your organization.
Categorize your data
Before designing a new policy, it is advisable to categorize the kind of data your organization handles daily. If any of the data you deal with is protected by federal laws, it would come under the ‘high risk class’. ‘Confidential’ data would be what you deem to be protected from unauthorized information transfers. Lastly, a lot of your data could also be publicly available, free to be distributed anywhere. Once you know the proportion of data you handle in each of these categories, designing a protection policy would be easier.
Involve your employees in policy design
Your employees are going to be directly affected by any information security policy you design. Why not let them help in defining what poses a risk to their systems and what appropriate use entails? Also let them know when you monitor their network activities to conduct an organization-wide risk assessment.All this would keep your employees informed and trustful and improve their compliance with the policies you design.
Do not overprotect
Do not get excessive with the protection you are providing through your security policy. The policy agenda should be equivalent to the level of risks identified during the risk assessment. Going overboard will only make yourorganization less productive. It will also create an environment of distrust among your employees.
Take cues from existing policies
You can always take cues from other organizations that have an information protection policy in place. You can also consult your vendors selling security software. However, keep in mind that no other organization’s policy will be applicable to your requirements as it is.You need to modify it based on your risk assessment and security needs.