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ISO/IEC 27007
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Security awareness materials for ISO27k

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ISO/IEC 27007:2011 Information technology — Security techniques — Guidelines for information security management systems auditing

Introduction

ISO/IEC 27007 provides guidance for accredited certification bodies, internal auditors, external/third party auditors and others auditing ISMSs against ISO/IEC 27001 (i.e. auditing the management system for compliance with the standard).

ISO/IEC 27007 adheres closely to the advice in ISO 19011, the standard for auditing management systems. It provides additional ISMS-specific guidance.

Structure

The standard covers the ISMS-specific aspects of compliance auditing:

  • Managing the ISMS audit programme (determining what to audit, when and how; assigning appropriate auditors; managing audit risks; maintaining audit records; continuous process improvement);
  • Performing an ISMS MS audit (audit process - planning, conduct, key audit activities including fieldwork, analysis, reporting and follow-ups);
  • Managing ISMS auditors (competencies, skills, attributes, evaluation).

The main body of the standard mostly advises on the application of ISO 19011 to the ISMS context, with a few not terribly helpful explanatory comments.  However the annex lays out in more detail specific audit tests concerning the organization’s compliance with the main body of ISO/IEC 27001. 

Other guidelines for ISMS auditing

Aside from ‘27007, here are some alternative/complementary sources of advice on ISMS auditing:

  • ISACA released IS auditing guideline G40 on Review of security management practices. The guide explains ISACA’s view of how IT auditors should audit the ISMS. It specifically mentions an ISO27k ISMS;
  • If you want to audit the information security controls as opposed to the management system, see ISO/IEC 27008.

Status of the standard

The standard was published in November 2011. ISO 19011 was also revised and republished in 2011.

The standard is currently being revised.

Status update July National standards bodies are to be balloted on the CD of the revised standard.

Personal comments

This standard concerns ISO27k compliance auditing, a particular form of auditing with a very specific goal: to assess whether the audited organization is fulfilling the obligations laid down in ISO/IEC 27001 in respect of its ISMS. There are many other types of audits with quite different goals. Please don’t make the mistake of assuming that all auditors are so-called “tick-and-bash” compliance auditors, or that all audits are compliance audits! For a peek at the broader remit and different operating styles and techniques of IT auditors, see the IT Audit FAQ.