Advantages of Candidates with ISSA (Information Systems Security Association) or ASIS (American Society for Industrial Security) Membership
Security management professionals have many choices for joining non-profit organizations dedicated to ethics, professional development and continuing education. Two examples are the ISSA (Information Systems Security Association) and the ASIS (American Society for Industrial Security). Information security professionals at various career stages can join these and take advantage of all the collaborative and learning opportunities their local chapters provide. Security candidates who list ISSA or ASIS membership on their resumes are worth a closer look because this voluntary activity indicates a strong dedication to their chosen field.
Networking Within Security Professional Organizations
ISSA and ASIS members have many opportunities to meet others with more experience and insight into the latest security industry practices. Conferences and forums allow members to exchange ideas about the latest issues facing the field and how to exchange ideas to address them. Candidates who are able to recount some of what they have learned and successfully applied from participation make strong contenders for leadership roles. ASIS has something for everyone. However, it has a unique focus on post-secondary education by offering scholarships for aspiring security professionals. Among other offerings is a scholarship program for active duty military members which begin in 2012. It covers the cost of application, preparation (online review) and testing for the CPP, PCI or PSP credential.
Codes of Ethics
Members of both organizations learn a specific code of professional conduct and ethics to ensure their job roles safeguard the public to the best of their ability at all times. These ethical guidelines include following all applicable local, state and federal laws, maintaining confidentiality when required and being vigilant about any arising conflicts of interest.
Webinars and Conferences
Members in these security organizations also gain access to regular instructional materials to keep up with changes in this industry. They are able to log into their member profiles and sign up for webinars covering risk mitigation, the costs of security breaches and the prevention of data compromises among many other topics. ASIS and ISSA members also attend face-to-face professional development courses in similar topics. New hirees for security executive positions are able to bring this comprehensive knowledge to their jobs and are able to examine a situation from more than one viewpoint and typically have a strong network of industry colleagues to call upon when needed.
Top security management recruiters and hiring managers who interview ISSA members or ASIS members as job candidates should ask detailed questions about what these candidates have gained from participation in these professional organizations. They can also ask each candidate to elaborate on how he or she has benefited the most professionally, in terms of leadership, learning best practices or technical knowledge. This type of active membership indicates a willingness to go above and beyond basic job requirements, so these candidates can be reliably short-listed for the top positions on a frequent basis.