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Overcoming obstacles in the security risk assessment process
This article is part of the November 2011 issue of Information Security magazine
Information security risk assessments are a fundamental building block of any security program, much like security awareness training, policies, procedures, and technical safeguards. A risk assessment program is required by several regulations such as HIPAA, SOX, and FISMA. Risk assessment is also an essential element of all security standard bodies of generally accepted security practices such as ISO, COBIT, and NIST. Ideally, an effective risk assessment program should ensure necessary security controls are in place or put in place based on the information risks or threats that an organization faces. The risk assessment process should identify and prioritize any gaps found. In other words, an effective risk assessment program should drive an organization’s security initiatives and its program. However, security risks assessments are subjective exercises. Risk assessments can be inadvertently and advertently skewed based on interpretations and result in not implementing necessary security controls. Reluctance to spend money, ...
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Features in this issue
PCI Security Standards Council plans to release a list of certified components in April.
An effective risk assessment process is essential, but many factors can skew the process and get in the way of security.
ISM November 2011 cover story: Eric Ogren on how virtual desktop infrastructure enhances compliance, data protection and malware protection.
Cybercriminals are zeroing in on small and midsize businesses with fewer security resources.
Columns in this issue
Security expert and Information Security magazine columnist Marcus Ranum talks to Richard Bejtlich, CSO and vice president, Mandiant Computer Incident Response Team (MCIRT) at security firm Mandiant.
We all have an explanation for weak security, but everyone needs to do their part to improve it.
China is being accused of hacking corporate, government and military networks in the U.S. for economic gain. Policy makers need to be versed in cybersecurity and figure out how to respond.