A step by step approach for an IT leader to build a secure application by integrating Application Security Testing into each phase of the SDLC.
As per the 2019 Cost of a Data Breach Report by Ponemon Institute, sponsored by IBM Security the average total cost of a data breach is USD 3.9 million and it can go as high as USD 8.19 million. The average size of a data breach is 25,575 records and the cost per record to USD 150. It may take up to 279 days to identify and contain the breach.
Regulators like PCI-DSS, HIPPA have stringent security compliance requirements and Organisations face penalties for non-compliance. This adds a financial burden to the organizations. Apart from financial loss, security breach also results in brand and reputation damage.
Out of 26 factors studied by Ponemon Institute, Extensive use of encryption, data loss prevention, threat intelligence sharing, and integrating security into the software development process were the key mitigators, which helped organizations to minimize the impact.
This paper provides strategies and best practices to build secure applications to protect organizations from potential threats.
The best strategy to develop a secure application is to integrate and automate Application Security Testing (AST) into each stage of the software development life cycle (SDLC).
Gartner identifies four main AST technologies.
Here are the guidelines to integrate application security into each phase of the Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC).
In the requirement phase, the development team gathers customer needs, analyze, validate, and prioritize them. It is important to receive business stakeholder’s approval before moving to the next phase.
In the design phase, the team defines a high-level solution to meet customer stated (functional) and unstated needs (non-functional). The team evaluates and identifies the right solution from design alternatives to meet the business needs. In complex projects, conduct detailed design and validate it by a prototype before starting the development to avoid any re-work.
In the code phase, developers implement the features as per the requirements and design guidelines.
In the build phase, application source files are bundled together to create a deployable binary file. Modern application development teams leverage CI & CD tools to continuously integrate, build, validate, and deploy applications in different environments.
In the Test phase, the testing team executes test cases to validate if the software built meets both functional and non-functional requirements.
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