Information Security: Definition, Principles, and Types


In this blog post, we are going to look into the definition of information security, its principles, reasons why we need it, its types, and how InfoSec is different from cybersecurity.


What is Information Security?

Information security refers to the process and methodology applied in order to protect information from unauthorized access, recording of data, inspection, deletion, alteration, etc. It is colloquially also called InfoSec.

Principles of InfoSec

Three main objectives or principles of InfoSec, also known as CIA, are:

  1. Confidentiality – Confidentiality means to control access to data so that only authorized users can have access or the authority to alter it. In layman’s terms, it means keeping data safe from unauthorized access.
  2. Integrity – It refers to keeping data unaltered and authentic when it’s uploaded and stored. This ensures that only those who have authorized access to data can modify it.
  3. Availability – This means that the data should not be absent and available to authorized users for having access to the data stored.

Why Do We Need Information Security?

In our daily operations, many risks can affect our system and information security. Some of them are as follows:

1.) Social Engineering Attacks

Phishing is a typical example of a social engineering attack. Phishing can be done via text, social media, email, and so on to extract information by gaining a user’s trust through disguising as a legitimate source.

2.) Advanced Persistence Threats (APT)

These are threats by collecting sensitive information over a considerable long period, by gaining access to your system.

3.) Ransomware

Malware is any software that intends to steal data from a user’s system. Ransomware attacks usually make use of malware to encrypt your data and hold it for ransom.

4.) Insider Threats

These include the vulnerabilities caused by individuals within an organization.

Types of InfoSec

1. Application Security

Application security includes finding and fixing software vulnerabilities in web and mobile applications, and application programming interfaces (APIs). These vulnerabilities can be present in the authentication or authorization of users, the integrity of code and configurations, and mature policies and procedures.

2. Cloud Security

An application running on the cloud is running in a shared environment. Thus, cloud security builds and hosts secure applications for cloud environments and makes it secure to use third-party applications.

3. Cryptography

After encrypting data to ensure its confidentiality and integrity, digital signatures are generally used to validate the authenticity of data in cryptography.

4. Vulnerability Management

It refers to scanning the environment for weak spots and immediately fixing the issues in order to limit the room for error.

5. Incident Response

Incident response is a type of InfoSec that monitors and investigates potentially malicious behavior. It is the approach to address and manage a cyberattack or data breach.

Difference Between Cybersecurity and Information Security

Many individuals use Information security and cybersecurity interchangeably. However, both are different. Cybersecurity is a subset of InfoSec. While InfoSec covers a broader range and variety of data, cybersecurity is exclusively referred to as the protection of internet-based and digital data.


The importance of information security is increasing just as the world’s reliance on data. It is an important practice that organizations of all scales should implement to ensure the safety of data and information across all forms of media, digital or not.

With the exponential development in AI and machine learning, the means of cyberattacks and security threats are becoming more sophisticated than ever.

Failing to properly implement InfoSec practices can result in financial, business, information, and other forms of losses for an organization. Therefore, overlooking InfoSec in today’s information-heavy world is not an option.

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Last Updated on January 22, 2022 by Pankaj Bhadwal