Gartner Information Technology Research

Security Frameworks: The What and Why, and How to Select Yours

Published: 04 February 2020

ID: G00441470

Analyst(s): Mike Wonham , Joerg Fritsch , Michael Kranawetter


Security frameworks provide a welcome basis for building a coherent security capability, but the variety can make it a difficult choice. Security and risk management technical professionals can use this comparison and mapping tool to help select which tool and how to start using it for advantage.

Table Of Contents


  • Comparing the Framework Families


  • Frameworks Explained
    • Security Controls Frameworks
    • Security Management Program Frameworks
    • IT Governance Frameworks
    • Lists of Controls Are Not Enough
    • Lists of Controls Can Be Too Much
    • How Much Use Are Certifications?
    • Related Frameworks Are Easier to Coordinate
    • Mapping Tool: Unified Compliance Framework


  • Selecting a Framework
    • Building on a Preexisting Program
  • Using a Controls Framework
    • Risk Management Brings Maturity to the Process
    • IT Governance Greases the Wheels
    • A Security Management Program Is the Most Important Framework


  • Framework Descriptions
    • Security Controls Frameworks
    • IT Governance Frameworks
    • Security Management Programs

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