What Are CIS Cybersecurity Controls?
CIS cybersecurity controls are guidelines and best practices designed to help organizations protect their networks and data. They are published by the Center for Internet Security and based upon the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s (NIST) Cybersecurity Framework (CSF) and include a range of security measures, such as access control, patch management, and incident response.
Types of CIS Cybersecurity Controls
CIS cybersecurity controls can be divided into three main categories: Administrative, Technical, and Physical.
- Administrative controls involve policy development, risk assessment, and incident response planning. These controls ensure the organization understands the risk posed by its systems and data, implements appropriate security measures, and has a plan in place to respond to threats and incidents.
- Technical controls involve measures such as authentication, encryption, and patch management. These controls help protect against external threats, such as hackers or malicious actors, as well as internal threats, such as employees who may not follow security policies.
- Physical controls involve measures such as locks, guards, and fencing. These controls help protect against threats from physical access to the organization’s premises.
Benefits of Using CIS Cybersecurity Controls
Organizations that implement the CIS cybersecurity controls through a CIS Control Audit can benefit from:
- Improved security: The CIS controls provide a comprehensive and standardized approach to cybersecurity, ensuring that organizations have complete and up-to-date security measures in place. This reduces the risk posed by external threats, as well as internal threats.
- Cost savings: Implementing the CIS cybersecurity controls can help organizations save money on security measures, such as firewalls and antivirus software, as well as on incident response and recovery.
- Compliance: Organizations that adhere to the CIS cybersecurity controls are more likely to comply with applicable laws and regulations.
Many companies engage with 3rd parties to conduct a CIS Cybersecurity Audit. An outside, neutral perspective on the fulfillment and gaps of CIS controls can help prioritize cybersecurity investments.