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Most references to cyber security and information assurance tend to blur the lines between the two, leading to many people believing that the two mean the same thing. This however is not the case. Information assurance and cybersecurity are two very separate entities. Yes, they hold some similarities, but there are also major differences. Let’s take a more in-depth look at both so you can satisfy yourself as to how they differ.
Cyber security is all about the processes and technologies employed to help protect data, networks and computer systems against cyber-attacks or unauthorised access. Its main aim is to protect a company’s assets against internal and external threats from criminal sources and natural disasters.
Much of cyber security is centred on risk assessment and risk management. It involves analysing networks to determine the threat level, and monitoring for potential threats. Mostly, cyber security involves using software to protect against criminal attack. This could include antivirus, firewalls, encryption and staff education.
Information assurance has actually been around a lot longer than cyber security, although it does include cyber security.
It has a broader focus, dealing with the protection of both digital and non-digital information. This encompasses not just the data stored on a device or network, but also hard copy records.
Information assurance management seeks to ensure that the information framework within any organisation performs in line with expectations, with the goal of keeping the information secure and out of reach of non-authorised personnel.
Protecting information in this way calls not just for cybersecurity measures, but also physical security measures, such as CCTV and access control, as well as perimeter security, high security locks, intruder detection and security patrols.
Both information assurance and cybersecurity value data integrity, and both call for a physical security element.
Devices, server rooms and entire premises that house digital information have to be guarded. Attacks may happen through cyber means, but data can be highjacked physically too.
Lastly, both require attention to setting company-wide policies with the intention of keeping information secure.
Those within an organisation concerned with information assurance management will generally be in charge of cybersecurity and all that entails, whilst also taking responsibility for security audits.
Information assurance looks at every aspect of a business that is concerned with the sharing of information, whereas cybersecurity deals with improving the digital aspects of information security.
When it comes to protecting your business against the growing and very damaging risks of data theft, loss or breach, it is vital that your defences cover every possible violation.
Whilst a cybersecurity plan is essential and highly beneficial, it is crucial that it is combined with a full information assurance management strategy.
Here at PC Docs, our data security solutions cover every aspect of information security, from cybersecurity to physical security. To learn more about how we can protect your business against the risks of cybercrime and data breach, you are welcome to get in touch.