Implementing ISO 27001:2022 Annex A.17 – Information Security Aspects of Business Continuity Management

We started the ISO 27001:2022 series with the promise of explaining how the 14 categories of controls can be implemented.

Today we address ISO 27001:2022 Annex A.17, “Information Security Aspects of Business Continuity Management” is crucial for organizations to ensure the resilience of their information security management systems (ISMS) in the face of disruptive events.

This annex provides guidelines for integrating information security into business continuity management processes to minimize the impact of disruptions and ensure the continuity of critical business operations.

Understanding the Importance of Business Continuity Management

Annex A.17 of ISO 27001:2022 outlines the controls necessary to ensure that information security is an integral part of the organization’s business continuity management. The annex emphasizes the need to prepare for, respond to, and recover from incidents that can impact the availability of critical information assets.

Business continuity management (BCM) is essential for organizations to prepare for and respond to disruptions that could affect their ability to deliver products and services.

Annex A.17 emphasizes several key aspects:

  • Risk Assessment: Identifying and assessing risks that could disrupt business operations and impact information security.
  • Business Impact Analysis: Evaluating the potential consequences of disruptions on critical business processes and information assets.
  • Business Continuity Planning: Developing and implementing strategies and procedures to maintain essential functions during and after disruptive events.
  • Testing and Exercise: Conducting regular testing and exercises to validate the effectiveness of business continuity plans and improve response capabilities.


Key Controls in Annex A.17:

  • A.17.1 Information Security Continuity: Ensure that information security continuity is embedded within the organization’s overall business continuity management systems.
  • A.17.2 Redundancies: Implement redundancy measures to ensure availability of information processing facilities.

Practical Implementation of Annex A.17

  1. Risk Assessment and Business Impact Analysis (BIA):
    • Example: An e-commerce company assesses the impact of a server downtime on its operations. The BIA shows significant revenue loss for each hour of downtime.
    • Implementation: Develop and implement continuity strategies based on the results of BIA. This includes identifying critical systems and processes and the extent of their protection.
  2. Establishing Redundancy and Resilience:
    • Example: A financial institution uses multiple data centers in geographically diverse locations to ensure data availability even in the case of a natural disaster.
    • Implementation: Invest in redundant hardware, failover systems, and data mirroring techniques to ensure continuous service and data availability.
  3. Developing and Implementing Business Continuity Plans:
    • Example: A healthcare provider ensures that all critical patient information systems have backups and are capable of being restored quickly in any emergency.
    • Implementation: Prepare detailed business continuity plans that include recovery objectives, strategies, and employee responsibilities. Regularly train staff on their roles during a disruption.
  4. Testing and Exercises:
    • Example: A technology firm conducts bi-annual drills to simulate different scenarios including cyber-attacks and power failures.
    • Implementation: Regular testing and rehearsal of business continuity plans to evaluate their effectiveness and make necessary adjustments.
  5. Embedding Information Security into Business Continuity:
    • Example: Incorporate cybersecurity measures into the business continuity plans of an online retailer to protect against data breaches during disruptions.
    • Implementation: Ensure that information security practices are maintained during a disruption, including access controls, encryption, and secure communication channels.

Auditing Annex A.17 Implementation

The audit of ISO 27001:2022’s Annex A.17 focuses on verifying that the business continuity plans and controls are in place, effective, and in alignment with the organization’s overall security policies. The audit process typically involves the following steps:

  1. Documentation Review: Auditors review all relevant documentation including the business impact analysis, risk assessments, continuity plans, and previous audit reports.
  2. Interviews: Conduct interviews with key personnel involved in business continuity management to assess their understanding and implementation of the policies.
  3. Observation and Testing: Direct observation of drills and testing processes, and reviewing logs and records to verify that procedures are regularly executed and monitored.
  4. Report Findings and Recommendations: Provide a detailed report of findings with any non-conformities and suggest corrective actions.


Implementing Annex A.17 of ISO 27001:2022 effectively ensures that an organization can protect its critical information assets during disruptions. By following structured implementation and regular audits, organizations can not only comply with ISO 27001 but also enhance their resilience against unforeseen events, thereby safeguarding their operations and reputation in the long term.

The post Implementing ISO 27001:2022 Annex A.17 – Information Security Aspects of Business Continuity Management first appeared on Sorin Mustaca on Cybersecurity.

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