The key checklist for ISO 27001

As more international business markets connect via new technological advancements, you will find that many clients and partners have placed a serious emphasis on cybersecurity.

These software programs are designed to protect your data from hackers. However, it isn’t just your information that you need to worry about. Your clients are going to provide you with key details that will remain as data on your servers. Therefore, a cyberattack could have negative consequences for both parties. Luckily, you can put your client’s minds at ease with an ISO 27001.


What is an ISO 27001?

An ISO 27001 is awarded to those who meet the set standards for information security. This certification demonstrates to your clients that you understand the importance of cybersecurity and that you have done all that you can to protect their data. It is not a legal requirement, but it is necessary if you want to distinguish yourself from other businesses.

The ISO 27001 management system is awarded once you have met a set of security standards. The process will look daunting at first, which is why companies like High Table can talk you through the step-by-step process of their ISO 27001 templates. They hold the specific knowledge needed to get your company to the right place for cybersecurity, so make sure that you get the help you need.

You can gain your ISO 27001 after an audit. This auditor will ask you to provide a set of documents to see if you have complied with all of the standards. It can take between thirty and ninety days but it is worth it for the reassurance alone. With that said, what is on the checklist for ISO 27001? Let’s find out.

Information security policy

Your information security policy is the document that shows exactly how your company stores and manages data. It refers to the business on a companywide scale. You will need to detail which employees have access to the data in your company, how often they have access, and the processes involved with individuals handling this data.

In a more basic sense, your information security policy should highlight your company’s antivirus management, your backup systems, data support operations data recovery process, and data retention. You will also need to display evidence that your staff is trained in all of these areas. As a result, you can show the auditor that your team is fully informed on what to do when it comes to data management and what not to do.

Information security risk assessment

If the information security policy part of this assessment was the theoretical side of ISO 27001, the information security risk assessment is practical. This process is designed to assess how well your security controls work. The auditor will test your systems from a cyber attacker’s point of view, revealing weaknesses that people on the outside can exploit.

The reason for this isn’t to demonstrate how you have failed, but rather to focus on what can be improved. The best way to show off your cybersecurity protocols is with an attack, and it is better to identify holes in your processes in a controlled environment like this than experience a real case of cybercrime. What’s more, you can go on to fix any issues that present themselves which will only bolster your security measures.

Treatment plan

The next step in your assessment is the information security treatment plan. This treatment plan is used as a way to perfect any holes that were dug up during the risk assessment.

Anyone new to cybersecurity or the ISO 27001 as a whole is going to find the process very confusing. That is why it is necessary to perform these practical assessments first and fix things before it is too late. Your auditor is going to know exactly how to tackle any holes that arise, and you can always ask for outside help as mentioned above. The point of these tests is to show that your company has the right cybersecurity protocols in place. Therefore, you need to treat any issues that are going to prevent this.

Statement of applicability

The statement of applicability is used to demonstrate what issues your company faced during the risk assessment and what controls were put in place to prevent them. Basically, it is proof that you know what cybersecurity risks your business is prone to and how you plan on defending your data.

This documentation is filled out using another step-by-step process. First, you need to outline what issues were found and why. Next, you will be asked to provide evidence of your implanted controls and explain why. This part is fairly self-explanatory; however, you may want to be more specific about your reasoning. Simply stating that the security protocols were put in place to protect your confidential data isn’t enough. Try to demonstrate applied knowledge where possible to show that you can deal with these issues without an auditor present.

The last step is recognising what problems did not come up during the test and why. The main reason that these issues did not show up is going to be because you already had the right cybersecurity processes in place. Again, this demonstrates that you know how to deal with these security issues on your own. Try to be as detailed as possible, recognising where your strengths are when it comes to data protection.

Information security objectives

There are three main focuses of cybersecurity, and you must familiarise yourself with all three if you are to achieve ISO 27001 certification. The first of these criteria is confidentiality. Are you aware of what is classified as confidential information? Learning this step will showcase that you know how vital it is to protect this type of data.

The second criterion is known as integrity. This highlights that you know that information can be doctored and that you have been honest in your approach to cybersecurity. In other words, it shows that you have not falsified any security documents.

The last criterion is availability. This part demonstrates that other people will have access to your business data and that they are fully up-to-date with the same ISO 27001 standards.

Evidence of compliance

This is the last document that you will need to worry about during this process, and all it does is wrap all of the evidence of the processes listed above. This means that you have put all of the tools and procedures in place to protect the data of your business and anyone else that communicates with you. Think of this part as your final results.

The main thing that your clients will look at is your evidence of compliance. It must be signed by an independent body, which removes any suspicions regarding fraud. In the end, your evidence of compliance will prove that you have undergone the full checklist to become a fully-fledged and certified ISO 27001 holder.


All of this information may seem intimidating on the surface, but try to remember that there are people out there that can help you with your ISO 27001. At the very least, this article should have given you a fundamental understanding of what goes into a cybersecurity assessment and why. There is a method to the madness, and assessments like these are only going to be more necessary as time moves on. Make sure that you get a head start and sort out your ISO 27001.