A Control Metaframework Can Unify NIST, ISO 27001 and more

2 minute read

April 2023

Cybersecurity teams often need to achieve compliance with multiple regulations, standards and frameworks. The sheer volume of controls required for compliance with more than one framework typically results in significant control overlap or redundancy. Overlapping controls result in duplicative evaluation and testing work which is costly from a time and resources perspective.  This redundancy can be eliminated by employing a control metaframework. 

 A control metaframework is a “framework of frameworks,” or a centralized library of controls that are pre-mapped to industry regulations and standards, including NIST, ISO 27001, GDPR, HIPAA and more. One popular control metaframework is the Secure Controls Framework (SCF), which includes over 1,000 controls related to privacy and information security.   

A metaframework can help you consolidate your controls into a single environment. For instance, both the SCF and the ISO 27001 require mechanisms to identify pertinent stakeholders of critical systems and involve them in asset management. Using a metaframework, that control can be mapped to each without producing redundancies, thus reducing duplicate work . This increased insight into your control environment enables your team to identify gaps in its security posture, prioritize the most critical remediation efforts, and prove compliance across multiple regulations and standards.  

This approach allows you to see both the controls related to a given framework and the frameworks related to a given control. This can be a powerful tool, especially for teams implementing policy changes and attempting to prioritize control remediation efforts. If two controls need remediation, but one of those controls relates back to multiple key frameworks, then that knowledge can be an important part of the decision-making process. In this way, a metaframework can make your controls more effective while increasing the efficiency of your operations.  

Looking to implement a metaframework in your risk management program? ProcessUnity for Cybersecurity Risk Management unifies your risk management program and processes both inside and outside of your organization, enabling proven benefits in efficiency, efficacy and control organization. 

Further reading: 

Best Practices for Fourth and Nth Party Due Diligence 

Show Executives that Cybersecurity Drives Operational Resilience 

Maturing Your Program with a Cyber Risk Management Platform 

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