Create a Policy for the CMMC Framework

Writing a policy is an essential task for any security professional to know how to generate, update, build, and follow. The below framework for a policy is broken down into eight parts.

1. Overview o State the overview of what this policy covers.

2. Purpose o State why this policy exists and its purpose

3. Scope o Who and what does this apply to?

4. Policy o The policy itself. o Guidelines o Rules for having the policy

5. Policy Compliance o How will it be verified that the policy is being meet?

6. Related Standards, Policies, and Processes o If any

7. Definitions and Terms o If any

8. Revision History o The date and summary of what changed since the last


Consensus Policy Resource Community

Password Protection Policy Free Use Disclaimer: This policy was created by or for the SANS Institute for the Internet community. All or parts of this policy can be freely used for your organization. There is no prior approval required. If you would like to contribute a new policy or updated version of this policy, please send email to Last Update Status: Updated October, 2017 1. Overview Passwords are an important aspect of computer security. A poorly chosen password may result in unauthorized access and/or exploitation of our resources. All staff, including contractors and vendors with access to <Company Name> systems, are responsible for taking the appropriate steps, as outlined below, to select and secure their passwords. 2. Purpose The purpose of this policy is to establish a standard for creation of strong passwords and the protection of those passwords. 3. Scope The scope of this policy includes all personnel who have or are responsible for an account (or any form of access that supports or requires a password) on any system that resides at any <Company Name> facility, has access to the <Company Name> network, or stores any non-public <Company Name> information. 4. Policy 4.1 Password Creation 4.1.1 All user-level and system-level passwords must conform to the Password Construction

Guidelines. 4.1.2 Users must use a separate, unique password for each of their work related accounts.

Users may not use any work related passwords for their own, personal accounts. 4.1.3 User accounts that have system-level privileges granted through group memberships or

programs such as sudo must have a unique password from all other accounts held by that user to access system-level privileges. In addition, it is highly recommend that some form of multi-factor authentication is used for any privileged accounts

4.2 Password Change 4.2.1 Passwords should be changed only when there is reason to believe a password has been

compromised. 4.2.2 Password cracking or guessing may be performed on a periodic or random basis by the

Infosec Team or its delegates. If a password is guessed or cracked during one of these scans, the user will be required to change it to be in compliance with the Password Construction Guidelines.

Consensus Policy Resource Community

4.3 Password Protection 4.3.1 Passwords must not be shared with anyone, including supervisors and coworkers. All

passwords are to be treated as sensitive, Confidential <Company Name> information. Corporate Information Security recognizes that legacy applications do not support proxy systems in place. Please refer to the technical reference for additional details.

4.3.2 Passwords must not be inserted into email messages, Alliance cases or other forms of electronic communication, nor revealed over the phone to anyone.

4.3.3 Passwords may be stored only in “password managers” authorized by the organization. 4.3.4 Do not use the "Remember Password" feature of applications (for example, web

browsers). 4.3.5 Any user suspecting that his/her password may have been compromised must report the

incident and change all passwords.

4.4 Application Development Application developers must ensure that their programs contain the following security precautions: 4.4.1 Applications must support authentication of individual users, not groups. 4.4.2 Applications must not store passwords in clear text or in any easily reversible form. 4.4.3 Applications must not transmit passwords in clear text over the network. 4.4.4 Applications must provide for some sort of role management, such that one user can take

over the functions of another without having to know the other's password.

4.5 Multi-Factor Authentication 4.5.1 Multi-factor authentication is highly encouraged and should be used whenever possible,

not only for work related accounts but personal accounts also.

5. Policy Compliance 5.1 Compliance Measurement The Infosec team will verify compliance to this policy through various methods, including but not limited to, periodic walk-throughs, video monitoring, business tool reports, internal and external audits, and feedback to the policy owner. 5.2 Exceptions Any exception to the policy must be approved by the Infosec Team in advance. 5.3 Non-Compliance An employee found to have violated this policy may be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment.

Consensus Policy Resource Community

6 Related Standards, Policies and Processes • Password Construction Guidelines

7 Revision History

Date of Change Responsible Summary of Change

June 2014 SANS Policy Team Updated and converted to new format.

October, 2017 SANS Policy Team Updated to confirm with new NIST SP800-63.3 standards.

Helpful Links • SANS Security Policy Templates main page • SANS Password Policy Document • Password Construction Guidelines – SANS Example • NIST 800-100 Information Security Handbook: A Guide for Managers • Internet DMZ Equipment Policy- • Virtual Private Network (VPN) Policy • Web Application Security Policy

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