iQuda Gains Government-Backed Cyber Essentials Certification
iQuda recently gained Cyber Essentials Certification through a CREST certified awarding body. Cyber Essentials is a UK Government-backed certification launched to help companies address the growing cyber security threat and prevent attacks.
The scheme involves an external network audit to confirm companies comply with recommended security best practice. Anthony Jones, Managing Director at iQuda, is delighted to be able to assure iQuda’s clients that the company places an emphasis on high standards of information security.
Cyber Essentials provides an assurance framework that companies must align themselves with to adopt good security practice. The framework was developed in collaboration with industry giants such as the British Standards Institution (BSI) and the Information Assurance for Small and Medium Enterprises Consortium (IASME).
To become certified, companies are required to confirm their adherence to a thorough security framework. A third party then conducts an external network audit, in this case, CREST certified, to verify the integrity of the companies network.
There are five main technical controls included in the framework:
- Boundary firewalls and Internet gateways –these devices prevent unauthorized access to or from private networks and secure setup either in hardware or software form helps keep these mechanisms effective.
- Secure configuration – this control helps ensure systems are configured in the most secure way possible for the needs of the organisation.
- Access control – this control ensures system access is only granted to the appropriate persons and at the appropriate level.
- Malware protection – malware and virus protection are vital in the fight against cyber security, and this controls ensures protection is installed and up to date.
- Patch management – patches, or updates, are released by vendors to keep applications up to date with emerging security threats. This control ensures organisations install patches on a regular basis to prevent insecure applications from opening a gateway to threats.
The scheme follows a specific process as identified by the UK Government:
- Organisations self-assess the systems identified to meet the requirements of Cyber Essentials. The assessment is independently verified.
- The organisation is independently tested to verify that the systems identified to meet the requirements of Cyber Essentials,
The scheme allows companies to verify their security practice as well as to prove to their stakeholders that they operate securely. As a trusted IT partner for many high-profile organisations, this certification reinforces iQuda’s ability to provide secure business IT solutions and keep data in their care safe.
The scheme was initially launched on 5 June 2014 and since then, fewer than 6,000 certificates have been awarded to businesses and organisations. There are around 5.5 million private enterprises in the UK, meaning that less than 0.001% have achieved certification.
Managing Director Anthony Jones commented: “Cyber security is a major concern for our clients and we want to assure them of our support credentials. It’s no longer enough to simply say we are secure, and external verification of our status is very important.”
Cyber Essentials Certification is the latest milestone is a long line of recent security achievements for the company. In 2016, iQuda achieved ISO 27001 certification and in the same year achieved 100% compliance with NHS Information Governance guidelines.
CREST is a not for profit that serves the needs of the technical information security marketplace. The organisation represents the technical information security industry by:
- offering a demonstrable level of assurance of processes and procedures of member organisations
- validating the competence of their technical security staff
- providing guidance, standards and opportunities to share and enhance knowledge
- providing technical security staff recognised professional qualifications and those entering or progressing in the industry with support with on-going professional development
iQuda is a multi-award winning independent IT services and support company. We provide a wide range of services on a fully outsourced or complementary basis to cater to the needs of small to medium organisations.
Based in Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire, iQuda serves a wide range of industries with a particular focus on supporting businesses, charities, hospices, healthcare providers and schools. Our clients are primarily based in the Home Counties, in areas including Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire and London.