School of Computer and Information Science, Edith Cowan University, Perth, Western Australia
Information security risk assessments (ISRAs) are of great importance for organisations. Current ISRA methods identify an organisation’s security risks and provide a measured, analysed security risk profile of critical information assets in order to build plans to treat risk. However, despite prevalent use in organisations today, current methods adopt a limited view of information assets during risk identification. In the context of day-to-day activities, people copy, print and discuss information, leading to the ‘leakage’ of information assets. Employees will create and use unofficial assets as part of their day-to-day routines. Furthermore, employees will also possess important knowledge on how to perform their functions within a business process or information system. These are all elements of business ‘practice’, a perspective that would yield a richer and holistic understanding of an organisation’s information assets and vulnerabilities. This perspective is not captured by traditional ISRA methods, leading to an incomplete view of an organisation’s information systems and processes that could prove detrimental and damaging. This paper hence suggests that a business practice perspective be incorporated into ISRA methods in order to identify information leakage, unofficial, critical information assets and critical process knowledge of organisations.