Information Assurance vs. Cybersecurity

Are you curious to know if information assurance is related to cybersecurity?

Information assurance and cybersecurity are similar concepts but have many differences. Information assurance deals with protecting data and information systems, while cybersecurity protects all-digital networks, apps, and systems.

About information assurance:

  • Information assurance is used to secure physical and digital data.
  • It focuses mainly on policies and prioritization.
  • It is more or less a straightforward approach.

Versus Cybersecurity that has a different focus:

  • Cybersecurity protects all digital resources of an organization
  • It deals with actual processes and technologies
  • It is more complex and dives deep into technicalities

We will explore all the nuances of information assurance vs. cybersecurity in our blog. First, let’s take a closer look at both concepts.

What is Information Assurance?

Securing information is a practice that started centuries before the digital age. Keeping your files, business data, and customer information safe from unauthorized access and use is vital.

Earlier, information security dealt with the protection of physical files and documents. You would keep the files locked in a room or cabinet to prevent unauthorized access.

The approach is now applicable to digital data and information systems. Many organizations use information assurance to safeguard private and sensitive data. It focuses on the probable risks an organization faces and provides policies to become resilient.

What is Cybersecurity?

Cybersecurity is the overall processes and technologies used to secure systems, networks, data, apps, and users. You can protect your investments from unauthorized access, cyber-attacks, and damages using cybersecurity.

This is a new field of security developed after the growth of the internet. You can use cybersecurity practices to protect data and systems connected to the internet.

As a result, cybersecurity is a much vaster field than information assurance.

What is Information Assurance vs. Cybersecurity?

Information assurance shares many dissimilarities with cybersecurity. While cybersecurity is a new realm, information assurance has existed for years. However, cybersecurity is much more responsive and constantly evolves to combat new and developing threats.

Resources Protected

The most information difference between the two is the resources they protect. Information assurance is concerned only with the protection of data and information systems. This also includes both physical and digital data.

Cybersecurity protects your entire range of digital investments and not only information. You can secure your infrastructures, networks, applications, and even devices connected to the internet.

Approach

Information assurance is focused more on policies than day-to-day activities. Information assurance experts take the responsibility to-

  • Determine data that is valuable to an organization
  • Identify threats and vulnerabilities associated with the data
  • Prioritize tasks and policies to protect identified information

Cybersecurity, on the other hand, focuses on technology and practices to protect infrastructures and investments. Cybersecurity experts assess digital assets and data to identify risks. They also come up with methods and safeguards to protect the assets and information.

Additionally, cybersecurity is involved in implementing solutions and preventing attacks. You can also take the help of cybersecurity to take remedial steps after an attack. Plus, cybersecurity helps organizations limit damage and recover from the incident.

Complexity

Information assurance doesn’t go into details like operating systems, deployments, or designing systems. It is more concerned about the business aspect of information. As a result, information assurance experts focus on a broader picture.

Cybersecurity needs careful consideration of bytes, OS versions, protocols and more. You will need to dig into the nitty-gritty to protect your infrastructure, networks, and systems.

As a result, cybersecurity is a much more complex field than information assurance.

Is Information Assurance Related to Cybersecurity in Any Way?

Cybersecurity deals with the protection of users, apps, devices, and data. In that sense, cybersecurity also protects information that is private or sensitive. So, you may use an information assurance model to strengthen your cybersecurity practices.

How is that possible?

Information assurance protects critical information by ensuring-

  • Integrity
  • Confidentiality
  • Availability
  • Non-repudiation

Experts use information assurance models to achieve the above tasks. The model rests on three main pillars that are-

Information States

Determining data that is valuable to the organization is an important pillar. Information can be in transmission, processing, or storage.

Security Services

Security services help protect information and its integrity. The data is also made confidential to prevent unauthorized access. Additionally, only the right people with the required permission can access the data.

Security Countermeasures

An analysis of people, practices, policies, and technology helps in combatting short-term threats and vulnerabilities. This dimension helps in building secure information systems and awareness.

The three pillars above can be a good foundation to drive cybersecurity strategies and activities. You can instill these pillars into your cybersecurity planning to protect your information, systems, and network.

Is Information Assurance the Same as Information Security?

You might come across another term in the world of data protection, i.e., information security. This branch of security prevents unauthorized access to private information. According to Norwich University, information security ensures data integrity, confidentiality, and availability.

Interestingly, information assurance also focuses on these three metrics. So, you can say both the concepts share some similarities.

However, the differences begin to show up while you take up actual activities. Information assurance uses policies and standards to protect the information belonging to an organization. It’s not concerned about daily activities or resources used for the purpose.

Information security directly deals with technologies, tools, and measures used to protect information. It’s a more hands-on approach that safeguards data from external threats. Additionally, information security takes on individual attacks or intrusions for quick remedies.

Information assurance is a broader concept, while information security is more specific.

Is Information Assurance the Same as Cyber Assurance?

Cyber assurance is a program that helps implement cybersecurity practices. The framework can assist organizations in protecting their infrastructures, digital assets, and information. It also includes identifying and implementing the means to achieve maximum security.

Information assurance, on the contrary, concentrates only on data or information. It doesn’t include protecting overall environments or systems.

Additionally, the steps for both are also different. Cyber assurance has three main pillars-

  1. Identifying and managing risks
  2. Ensuring compliance with standards and risk management
  3. Internal audits to dig up gaps and areas of improvement

Information assurance uses the pillars of information states, security measures, and security countermeasures. So, the process of ensuring protection is also not the same for both.

Final Thoughts

Information assurance can be considered a small part of cybersecurity. You will need to protect your information to secure your organization from cyber threats. You can use information assurance models to guide your cybersecurity efforts and achieve your goals. However, don’t confuse information assurance with cyber assurance.

Both are different and use dissimilar implementation processes. Make yourself aware of the differences to create a better information assurance plan or cybersecurity strategy.

 

Share this

Related Articles

August 3, 2022

How Much Does Data Recovery Cost? Find Out Everything Here

July 18, 2022

Who Can We Report the Ransomware To? Should We Tell the Authorities?

July 1, 2022

What is a HIPAA Violation? Who is Responsible? What is the Punishment?