Clause 4.3 ISO 27001 Implementation Guideline

Clause 4.3 Determining the scope of the information security management system

Required Activity

Clause 4.3 ISO 27001 Implementation Guideline The organization determines the boundaries and applicability of the ISMS(information security management system) to determine its scope.


The scope of the information security defines where and for what precisely the ISMS is applicable and where and for what it’s not. Establishing the scope is therefore a key activity that determines the required foundation for all other activities within the implementation of the ISMS. as an example , risk assessment and risk treatment, including the determination of controls, won’t produce valid results without having a particular understanding of where precisely the ISMS is applicable. Precise knowledge of the boundaries and applicability of the ISMS and therefore the interfaces and dependencies between the organization and other organizations is critical as well. Any later modifications of the scope may result in considerable additional effort and costs.

The following factors can affect the determination of the scope:

a) The external and internal issues described in Understanding the organization and its context;
b) The interested parties and their requirements that are determined consistent with ISO/IEC 27001:2013¸4.2;
c) The readiness of the business activities to be included as a part of ISMS coverage;
d) All support functions, i.e. functions that are necessary to support these business activities (e.g. Human resources management; IT services and software applications; facility management of Buildings, physical zones, essential services and utilities);
e) All functions that is outsourced either to other parts within the organization or to independent suppliers.

The scope of an ISMS are often very different from one implementation to a different . as an example , the scope can include:

One or more specific processes;

One or more specific functions;

One or more specific services;

— One or more specific sections or locations;

A whole legal entity;

A whole administrative entity and one or more of its suppliers.

To establish the scope of ISMS, multi-step approaches are often followed:

a) Determine the preliminary scope: this activity should be conducted by a little , but representative group of management representatives;

b) Determine the refined scope: the functional units within and out of doors the preliminary scope should be reviewed, possibly followed by inclusion or exclusion of a number of these functional units to scale back the amount of interfaces along the boundaries. When refining the preliminary scope, all support functions should be considered that are necessary to support the business activities included in the scope;

c) Determine the ultimate scope: the refined scope should be evaluated by all management within the refined scope. If necessary, it should be adjusted then precisely described; and

d) Approval of the scope: the documented information describing the scope should be formally approved by top management.

The organization should also consider activities with impact on the ISMS or activities that are outsourced, either to other parts within the organization or to independent suppliers. For such activities, interfaces (physical, technical and organizational) and their influence on the scope should be identified.

Documented information describing the scope should include:

a) The organizational scope, boundaries and interfaces;
b) The information and communication technology scope, boundaries and interfaces;
c) The physical scope, boundaries and interfaces.

Questions related to this topic
  1. Explain Clause 4.3 ISO 27001 Implementation Guideline?
  2. What is Determining the scope of the information security management system in Clause 4.3 ISO 27001 Implementation Guideline?

ISO 27001 Requirements

Clause 4.2 Understanding the needs and expectations of interested parties 
Clause 4.4 Information security management system
Clause 5.1 Leadership and commitment
Clause 5.2 Policy
Clause 5.3 Organizational roles, responsibilities and authorities 
Clause 6.1 Actions to address risks and opportunities
Clause 6.1.2 Information security risk assessment process
Clause 6.1.3 Information security risk treatment
Clause 6.2 Information security objectives & planning
Clause 7.1 Resources
Clause 7.2 Competence
Clause 7.3 Awareness
Clause 7.4 Communication
Clause 7.5 Documented information Implementation Guideline
Clause 8.1 Operational planning & control
Clause 8.2 Information security risk assessment
Clause 8.3 Information security risk treatment
Clause 9.1 Performance evaluation Monitoring, measurement, analysis & evaluation
Clause 9.2 Internal audit
Clause 9.3 Management review
Clause 10.1 Non conformity and corrective action
Clause 10.2 Continual Improvement  

ISO 27001 Annex A Controls

Annex A.5 Information Security Policies
Annex A.6 Organization of Information Security
Annex A.6.2 Mobile Devices and Teleworking
Annex A.7 Human Resource Security
Annex A.7.2 During Employment
Annex A.7.3 Termination and Change of Employment
Annex A.8 Asset Management
Annex A.8.1.3 Acceptable Use of Assets & A.8.1.4 Return of Assets
Annex A.8.2 Information Classification
Annex A.8.2.2 Labeling of Information & A.8.2.3 Handling of Assets
Annex A.8.3 Media Handling
Annex A.9 Access Control
Annex A.9.1.2 Access to Networks and Network Services
Annex A.9.2 User Access Management
Annex A.9.2.3 Management of Privileged Access Rights  
Annex A.9.2.4 Management of Secret Authentication Information of Users
Annex A.9.2.5 Review of User Access Rights 
Annex A.9.2.6 Removal or Adjustment of Access Rights
Annex A.9.3 User Responsibilities
Annex A.9.4 System and Application Access Control
Annex A.9.4.4 Use of Privileged Utility Programs 
Annex A.9.4.5 Access Control to Program Source Code
Annex A.10 Cryptography
Annex A.11 Physical and Environmental Security
Annex A.11.2 Equipment
Annex A.11.1.3 Securing Offices, Rooms and Facilities
Annex A.11.1.4 Protecting Against External and Environmental Threats
Annex A.11.1.5 Working in Secure Areas
Annex A.11.1.6 Delivery and Loading Areas
Annex A.11.2.4 Equipment Maintenance
Annex A.11.2.5 Removal of Assets
Annex A.11.2.6 Security of Kit and Assets Off-Premises
Annex A.11.2.7 Secure Disposal or Re-use of Equipment
Annex A.11.2.8 Unattended User Equipment
Annex A.11.2.9 Clear Desk and Clear Screen Policy
Annex A.12 Operations Security
Annex A.12.2 Protection from Malware
Annex A.12.3 Backup
Annex A.12.4 Logging and Monitoring
Annex A.12.5 Control of Operational Software
Annex A.12.6 Technical Vulnerability Management
Annex A.12.7 Information Systems Audit Considerations
Annex A.13 Communications Security
Annex A.13.2 Information Transfer
Annex A.13.2.3 Electronic Messaging
Annex A.13.2.4 Confidentiality or Non-Disclosure Agreements
Annex 14 System Acquisition, Development and Maintenance
Annex A.14.1.2 Securing Application Services on Public Networks
Annex A.14.1.3 Protecting Application Services Transactions
Annex A.14.2 Security in Development and Support Processes
Annex A.14.2.3 Technical Review of Applications after Operating Platform Changes
Annex A.14.2.4 Restrictions on Changes to Software Packages
Annex A.14.2.5 Secure System Engineering Principles
Annex A.14.2.6 Secure Development Environment
Annex A.14.2.7 Outsourced Development
Annex A.14.2.8 System Security Testing
Annex A.14.2.9 System Acceptance Testing
Annex A.14.3 Test data
Annex A.15 Supplier Relationships
Annex A.15.1.2 Addressing Security Within Supplier Agreements
Annex A.15.1.3 Information and Communication Technology Supply Chain
Annex A.15.2 Supplier Service Delivery Management
Annex A.16 Information Security Incident Management
Annex A.16.1.2 Reporting Information Security Events
Annex A.16.1.3 Reporting Information Security Weaknesses
Annex A.16.1.4 Assessment of and Decision on Information Security Events
Annex A.16.1.5 Response to Information Security Incidents
Annex A.16.1.6 Learning from Information Security Incidents
Annex A.16.1.7 Collection of Evidence
Annex A.17 Information Security Aspects of Business Continuity Management
Annex A.17.1.3 Verify, Review and Evaluate Information Security Continuity
Annex A.18 Compliance
Annex A.18.1.3 Protection of Records
Annex A.18.1.4 Privacy and Protection of Personally Identifiable Information
Annex A.18.1.5 Regulation of Cryptographic Controls
Annex 18.2 Information Security Reviews

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