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What does ISO 27001 Lead Implementer training look like?

The ISMS (Information Security Management System) plays a very important role in every business these days. Since implementation of the ISMS can be a complex process (and usually differs in each industry sector), in order to participate and build this system, a good approach is to learn how to implement it within your organization.

Basically, you need to be prepared to understand all ISMS aspects in various worlds of information and how to implement it. ISO 27001 Lead Implementer training is the answer to those requirements. The following are the most important things regarding what the training looks like, and where you need to focus during the training.

Duration of the training, prerequisites, and exams

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The duration can vary based on different training providers. In most cases, it’s a five-day training. It will typically end with the exam on the last day, which you have to pass with a certain percentage (if you want to gain the certificate). The exam usually contains additional questions and case scenarios, which are sometimes related to information technology knowledge (which has to be on a certain level, based on the industry where the ISMS needs to be implemented).

Since most of the processes in contemporary organizations use sensitive information supported by information technology infrastructure, it’s crucial to be aware of the link between information security, technology, and business processes. Understanding how technology supports business operation and handles information would be, actually, a prerequisite that any Lead Implementer training attendee should have.

So, it’s a fact that organizations need to implement certain controls from ISO 27001, and attendees will need to understand (at least basic) principles of the ICT environment.

Training topics and domains – Management System

Usually, training will start with an introduction and explanation on management systems. Here I’d like to point out the importance that during the training, attendees will learn the meaning of context of the organization, together with the definition of the scope for implementation. It is very important because risk assessment and risk management processes use this as foundation, i.e., defined boundaries. Read the article How to define the ISMS scope to learn more about the scope.

Training will continue with the leadership and planning, where the main principles of risks will be explained. Trainings include risk methodology, but sometimes they just explain the basic principles of mandatory requirements for risk assessment and risk treatment plan. I suggest that you check how the risk topics are covered (by your training provider) in the scope of the training. If the training explains at least the fundaments of risk assessment methodology, you are in the right group. Read the article ISO 27001 risk assessment & treatment – 6 basic steps to learn more about risk assessment and treatment.

The next topics are about support, which is related to resources, awareness, and competence. You will next learn definitions of documented information and other forms that will be used in the ISMS system. In operations, you will learn mostly about operational planning and control, and how to implement controls for risk mitigation (i.e., risk treatment plan), based on the risk assessment results and management acceptance of the proposed controls (plans).

For performance evaluations, the trainers will teach you how to do monitoring and measurement of the system, internal audits, and management reviews (it will be only a basic approach for internal audit, since it is included in different Internal Auditor trainings for ISO 27001).

Continual improvements in the training sessions are mostly related to enhancements on suitability, adequacy, and effectiveness of the ISMS.

Annex A, workshops and hands-on work

Annex A consists of 14 domains and 114 controls. Usually, it will be implementation requirements taken as a result of the risk assessment. You will learn how to identify certain controls that are applicable for your management system, and define the SoA (Statement of Applicability).

The SoA is the document where you have to define implementation or exclusions of the Annex A controls, and explain all justifications. Read the article The importance of Statement of Applicability for ISO 27001 to learn more about the SoA and its importance for the ISMS implementation.

Training covers all controls and explains the most important details in order to help you manage risks in the scope of the ISMS. Read the article Overview of ISO 27001:2013 Annex A to learn more about Annex A.

The workshops are an important part of the training. Most of them cover certain case studies, and you will have to identify gaps from ISO 27001 requirements and propose certain implementation controls and scenarios. Depending on the training provider, it is possible that your participation in workshops and discussion will make up a certain percent of the score for your final Lead Implementer test results.

Lead Implementation training – Most important aspects

Remembering the early stage of my beginnings, back in 2005, if I had guidance on how to prepare myself for the ISO 27001 Lead Implementer training, it would help me to focus more on discussions, questions, and more participation instead of just listening during the training. Now, looking back, I see that benefits from this training are that you will gain knowledge about:

  • Learning about main ISMS principles
  • Understanding the difference between IT security and information security
  • Applicability of controls in the SoA
  • Complexity of implementation in all segments of organizations within the scope
  • Risk assessment and continual improvement
  • How to apply controls in Annex A

So, you need to prepare yourself in the best possible way to get the most out of what is offered in the training sessions. And, by successfully passing this training, you will be ready to start the implementation of an ISMS in your organization, or in other organizations if you are in the ISMS consultancy business.

Why not use our free online training  ISO 27001 Foundation course, which will show you basically the same things as the first day of the Lead Implementer course.

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