06 Nov

3 Determine the scope of the ISMS

When management has made the appropriate commitments, you can begin to establish your ISMS. In this step, you should determine the extent to which you want the ISMS to apply to your organization.
What you need:
You can use several of the “result” documents that were created as part of step 2, such as:

  • The information security policy
  • The information security objectives and plans
  • The roles and responsibilities that are related to information security and were defined by the management

In addition, you will need:

  • Lists of the areas, locations, assets, and technologies of the organization that will be controlled by the ISMS.
  • What areas of your organization will be covered by the ISMS?
  • What are the characteristics of those areas; its locations, assets, technologies to be included in the ISMS?
  • Will you require your suppliers to abide by your ISMS?
  • Are there dependencies on other organizations? Should they be considered?

Your goals will be to cover the following:

  • the processes used to establish the scope and context of the ISMS.
  • the strategic and organizational context
  • Important: Keep your scope manageable. Consider including only parts of the organization, such as a logical or physical grouping within the organization. Large organizations might need several Information Security Management Systems in order to maintain manageability. For example, they might have one ISMS for their Finance department and the networks used by that department and a separate ISMS for their Software Development department and systems.
    Results: A documented scope for your ISMS.
    When you have determined the scope, you will need to document it, usually in a few statements or paragraphs. The documented scope often becomes one of the first sections of your organization’s Security Manual. Or, it might remain a standalone document in a set of ISMS documents that you plan to maintain. Often the scope, the security policy, and the security objectives are combined into one document.