Risk Management Framework (RMF) controls are a set of security and privacy controls that organizations can use to protect their information systems and data. RMF controls are defined in NIST Special Publication (SP) 800-53, Revision 5, Security and Privacy Controls for Federal Information Systems and Organizations.
RMF controls are organized into 18 control families, each of which addresses a specific security or privacy concern. The RMF control families are:
- AC: Access Control
- AT: Awareness and Training
- AU: Audit and Accountability
- CA: Configuration Management
- CM: Change Management
- CP: Contingency Planning
- IA: Identification and Authentication
- IR: Incident Response
- MA: Maintenance
- MP: Media Protection
- PE: Physical and Environmental Protection
- PL: Planning
- PR: Program Protection
- PS: Personnel Security
- RA: Risk Assessment
- SA: Security Assessment
- SC: System and Services Acquisition
- SI: System and Information Integrity
- SC: System and Communications Protection
Each RMF control family contains a number of controls, each of which addresses a specific aspect of the security or privacy concern. For example, the AC control family includes controls for authentication, authorization, and auditing. RMF controls can be implemented in a variety of ways, depending on the specific needs of the organization.
Some common ways to implement RMF controls include:
- Using security policies and procedures to define how security and privacy controls will be implemented and managed.
- Using security tools and technologies, such as access control lists, firewalls, and intrusion detection systems, to implement and manage security and privacy controls.
- Using security training to educate employees about security and privacy best practices.
There are a number of benefits to implementing RMF controls, including:
- Improved security: RMF controls help to protect information systems and data from unauthorized access, modification, or destruction.
- Reduced risk: RMF controls help to reduce the risk of security incidents, such as data breaches and malware attacks.
- Compliance: RMF controls can help organizations comply with applicable laws and regulations, such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).
- Increased trust: By implementing RMF controls, organizations can demonstrate to their customers and partners that they are taking steps to protect their data.
To implement RMF controls, organizations should follow these steps:
- Identify the information systems and data that need to be protected.
- Conduct a risk assessment to identify the risks to the information systems and data.
- Select the RMF controls that are needed to mitigate the risks.
- Implement the RMF controls.
- Monitor and audit the RMF controls to ensure that they are effective.
- Regularly review and update the RMF controls to ensure that they are aligned with the changing needs of the organization and the latest security threats.
Here are some examples of RMF controls:
- AC-2: Access Control Enforcement: This control requires organizations to implement mechanisms to enforce access control decisions. Some common mechanisms for enforcing access control decisions include access control lists (ACLs), role-based access control (RBAC), and multi-factor authentication (MFA).
- AT-1: Security Awareness and Training: This control requires organizations to provide security awareness and training to all personnel who access information systems. The training should cover topics such as security policies and procedures, password management, and phishing awareness.
- AU-2: Audit and Accountability: This control requires organizations to audit and account for system activity. The auditing should include tracking user activity, system events, and file changes.
- CA-2: Asset Management: This control requires organizations to identify and manage their information assets. The asset management process should include identifying all information assets, tracking the location of information assets, and classifying information assets based on their sensitivity.
- CM-2: Configuration Management: This control requires organizations to control changes to information systems. The configuration management process should include identifying all configuration items, tracking changes to configuration items, and approving changes to configuration items.
RMF controls are a valuable tool that organizations can use to protect their information systems and data from unauthorized access, modification, or destruction. By implementing RMF controls, organizations can reduce the risk of security incidents, comply with applicable laws and regulations, and increase trust with their customers and partners.