HP has today announced that it has strengthened its public sector supply chain by enabling over 600 small/medium enterprises (SMEs) to prove their security credentials with the new Information Assurance for SMEs (IASME) security standard.
The IASME should allow SMEs to compete for public sector contracts by offering a more affordable route to compliance with ISO/IEC 27001:2013, the information security standard which was published last year.
Stuart Bladen, vice president and general manager of HP's UK Public Sector, said that his firm had a major role to play in enabling companies to gain security accreditation.
"As well as ensuring that the IASME standard can be readily implemented in our supply chain, this agreement opens up a market valued at up to £250,000 to the IASME Consortium which will ripple through to a variety of other Worcestershire-based SMEs. It demonstrates the value that SMES can bring to the government, larger IT suppliers and the local business community," he said.
IASME is available either through self-assessment or assessment by an independent auditor, and includes certification against the UK government's Cyber Essentials scheme and cyber liability insurance for UK companies with a turnover of less than £20 million. The standard is also regularly revised to keep up with changes in the information risk ecosystem.
Chief technology officer of HP Enterprise Security Services, Andrzej Kawalec, said that UK SMEs are continuing to spend more and more in order to respond to security breaches.
Read more: Security now the biggest concern among SMEs
"At HP, we recognise that our cyber security consulting services must be aligned to the need of organisations of all sizes," he said.