Creating and Communicating a Security Strategy

As an IT professional, you’ll often be required to communicate policies, standards, and practices in the workplace. For this assignment, you’ll practice this important task by taking on the role of an IT professional charged with creating a memo to communicate your company’s new security strategy.

The specific course learning outcomes associated with this assignment are:

  • Analyze the importance of network architecture to security operations.
  • Apply information security standards to real-world implementation.
  • Communicate how problem-solving concepts are applied in a business environment.
  • Use information resources to research issues in information systems security.
  • Write clearly about network security topics using proper writing mechanics and business formats.

Preparation

  1. Review the essential elements of a security strategy

A successful IT administration strategy requires the continuous enforcement of policies, standards, and practices (procedures) within the organization. Review these elements to see how they compare:

       Policy: The general statements that direct the organization’s internal and external communication and goals. 

    Standards: Describe the requirements of a given activity related to the policy. They are more detailed and specific than policies. In effect, standards are rules that evaluate the quality of the activity. For example, standards define the structure of the password and the numbers, letters, and special characters that must be used in order to create a password.

    Practices: The written instructions that describe a series of steps to be followed during the performance of a given activity. Practices must support and enhance the work environment. Also referred to as procedures.

   2. Describe the business environment

You are the IT professional in charge of security for a company that has recently opened within a shopping mall. Describe the current IT environment at this business. You can draw details from a company you work for now or for which you have worked in the past. You’ll need to get creative and identify the details about this business that will influence the policies you’ll create. For example, does the company allow cell phone email apps? Does the company allow web mail? If so, how will this affect the mobile computing policy? Describe all the details about this business environment that will be necessary to support your strategy.

  1. Research sample policies

Familiarize yourself with various templates and sample policies used in the IT field. Do not just copy another company’s security policy, but rather learn from the best practices of other companies and apply them to yours. Use these resources to help structure your policies:

  • Additional Examples and Tips – Refer to page 5 and 6

Instructions

With the description of the business environment (the fictional company that has opened in a shopping mall) in mind and your policy review and research complete, create a new security strategy in the format of a company memo (no less than three to five pages) in which you do the following:

  1. Describe the business environment and identify the risk and reasoning

Provide a brief description of all the important areas of the business environment that you’ve discovered in your research. Be sure to identify the reasons that prompted the need to create a security policy.

  1. Assemble a security policy

Assemble a security policy or policies for this business. Using the memo outline as a guide, collect industry-specific and quality best practices. In your own words, formulate your fictional company’s security policy or policies. You may use online resources, such as the National Security Agency (NSA) – https://www.nsa.gov/  and Network World – https://www.networkworld.com/category/security/ . In a few brief sentences, provide specific information on how your policy will support the business’ goal.

  1. Develop standards

Develop the standards that will describe the requirements of a given activity related to the policy. Standards are the in-depth details of the security policy or policies for a business.

  1. Develop practices

Develop the practices that will be used to ensure the business enforces what is stated in the security policy or policies and standards.

Format your assignment according to the following formatting requirements:

  • You may use the provided memo outline as a guide for this assignment, or you may use your own. Get creative and be original! (You should not just copy a memo from another source.) Adapt the strategy you create to your “company” specifically. In the workplace, it will be important to use company standard documents for this type of communication.
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