What is the difference between Information Security and Cyber Security?

What is the difference between Information Security and Cyber Security?

Although Information Security and Cybersecurity are often used interchangeably, they have subtle differences. Here’s a breakdown:

Information Security (InfoSec):

  • Focus: Protecting information throughout its lifecycle, regardless of location or format.
  • Scope: Broader, encompassing all forms of information, including physical, digital, and classified.
  • Goals: Ensuring the Confidentiality, Integrity, and Availability (CIA triad) of information.
  • Examples: Data encryption, access controls, physical security measures, data classification, incident response.


  • Focus: Protecting information systems and networks from cyberattacks.
  • Scope: Narrower, focusing specifically on digital information and systems.
  • Goals: Preventing unauthorised access, use, disclosure, disruption, modification, or destruction of digital information.
  • Examples: Firewalls, intrusion detection systems, vulnerability management, malware protection, security awareness training.

Here’s an analogy to understand the difference:

Imagine information as water. Information security is like a dam and irrigation system, ensuring the water (information) is available to authorised users (people) in quantity and quality. Cybersecurity is like a filtration system within the dam, protecting the water from contaminants (cyberattacks).

Key Differences:

  • Scope: Information security has a broader scope than cybersecurity.
  • Focus: Information security focuses on the information itself, while cybersecurity focuses on the systems that store and process the information.
  • Goals: Information security aims to achieve the CIA triad, while cybersecurity aims to prevent cyberattacks.
  • Techniques: Information security includes a broader range of methods than cybersecurity, including physical security measures and data classification.

Overlap and Relationship:

  • Cybersecurity is a subset of information security.
  • Both disciplines share many common goals and techniques.
  • Information security provides a framework for cybersecurity.
  • Cybersecurity implementations contribute to achieving information security goals.

In conclusion:

  • Information security is the umbrella term encompassing all aspects of information protection.
  • Cybersecurity focuses specifically on protecting digital information from cyberattacks.
  • Both disciplines are essential for protecting valuable information in today’s digital world.

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