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A Guide to ISO 27001 for Retail Business

Whether operating primarily online or in person, retailers are often at risk of cyber threats and data breaches due to the sensitive customer information they handle. This is why it’s important to establish watertight information security policies and practices to keep the data protected. This is where ISO 27001 for retail businesses comes in.

When your retail business becomes ISO 27001 compliant, you’ll receive a range of benefits and data protections. By adhering to these standards, your business can protect customer data, demonstrate a commitment to information security, and mitigate the risk of cyber-attacks. This will ultimately increase customer trust, strengthen your brand reputation, and help your business remain compliant with various data protection regulations.

In this article, Hicomply explains the importance of ISO 27001 for retail business.

What is ISO 27001?

ISO 27001 is an information security standard developed by the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO). Achieving certification allows your retail business to ensure that your data and information assets (and those of your customers, too) are protected.  

By becoming ISO 27001 compliant, your business can quickly and effectively mitigate the risk of a cyber-attack or a breach with ease. This significantly reduces the potential for your business to have to deal with reputational damage and expensive fines.

With ISO 27001 for retail business, your organisation can display compliance to your customers and potential partners, which builds trust and confidence and can increase business opportunities in the future. ISO 27001 for retail businesses will also ensure that your company complies with General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). 

Why should your organisation seek ISO 27001 for retail business?

Several common cyber threats may affect your retail business, so it’s important to stay vigilant. ISO 27001 for retail businesses can help your organisation mitigate the following risks:

  • Ransomware: Usually installed into a company’s network by attackers, dangerous ransomware is used to exploit your security system’s vulnerabilities – holding the business to ransom. The ransomware will temporarily pause payments and processes until the company pays to remove it, which can lead to significant financial losses.
  • Phishing attacks: Scam emails disguised to look like legitimate comms or business emails are sent to members of the business. Once the link or attachment is downloaded by the recipient, harmful malware is downloaded to the device. This gives the attacker access to confidential information on both the business and the customers.
  • Data breaches and leaks: Without ISO 27001 for retail business, data breaches and leaks are common. In this scenario, customer information such as cardholder data is often stolen by attackers posing as existing users.

What are the benefits of ISO 27001 for the retail industry? 

Beyond the obvious benefits of having increased information security protection and a bolstered reputation amongst customers and stakeholders alike, ISO 27001 for retail business will also provide your organisation with several operational advantages.

By implementing and documenting information security policies and procedures throughout your company, you will experience an improvement in operational structure and consistency. ISO 27001 compliance also ensures a better communication flow of policies and objectives throughout the organisation.  

For the relevant staff, having the clearly defined roles and responsibilities outlined in the standard will help to streamline tasks, ensure accountability, and reduce wasted time through unnecessary processes. Similarly, the higher level of planning incorporated in the workplace through ISO 27001 will ensure that should a cyber threat come to fruition, the recovery process will be swift and effective, with minimal disruption.

For the entire workforce, an increased knowledge of data protection at all levels reduces the risk of any mistakes occurring internally. By putting information security at the core of your business operations, the importance of avoiding a breach or leak cannot be undermined. Your business will be required to provide extra training, allowing your staff to be vigilant and alert to phishing scams and hackers.

Due to the constantly evolving nature of cyber threats, ISO 27001 certification also requires retailers to continuously review and improve information security policies and procedures to stay one step ahead of cybercriminals. This allows your business to avoid newly developed threats and hacking techniques, using the most up-to-date ISMS to keep everything under control.

ISO 27001 for retail business – made easy

For retail businesses seeking ISO 27001 compliance, the process can seem time-consuming and intimidating – especially for newcomers. At Hicomply, our mission is to streamline the process so you can achieve compliance as you work.

Our ISMS dashboard not only keeps your documents secure in one place – you can also automate admin tasks, ongoing risk management, and much more. Interested in seeing how Hicomply can work for you? Book a demo.