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    What Is the Secure Software Development Lifecycle (SSDLC)?

    Understand why a Secure SDLC is important, examples of format Secure SDLC processes such as NIST SSDF and OWASP CLASP, and more.

    Secure Software Development Lifecycle

    Understand why an SSDLC is important, examples of format SSDLC processes such as NIST SSDF and OWASP CLASP, and learn to embed security into all stages of the SDLC.

    What is a Secure SDLC?

    The software development life cycle (SDLC) framework maps the entire development process. It includes all stages—planning, design, build, release, maintenance, and updates, as well as the replacement and retirement of the application when the need arises.

    The secure SDLC (SSDLC) builds on this process by incorporating security in all stages of the lifecycle. Teams often implement an SSDLC when transitioning to DevSecOps. The process involves applying security best practices alongside functional aspects of development, and securing the development environment.

    In this article:

    The Importance of a Secure Software Development Lifecycle

    Examples of a Secure SDLC

    NIST Secure Software Development Framework (SSDF)

    MS Security Development Lifecycle (MS SDL)

    OWASP Comprehensive, Lightweight Application Security Process (CLASP)

    Embedding Security into All Phases of the SDLC


    Requirements and Analysis

    Design and Prototyping

    Development and Testing

    Deployment Maintenance

    Implementing a Secure SDLC with Aqua Security

    The Importance of a Secure SDLC

    It is a common belief that security requirements and testing inhibit the development process. However, a secure SDLC provides an effective method for breaking down security into stages during the development process. It unites stakeholders from development and security teams with a shared investment in the project, which helps to ensure that the software application is protected without being delayed.

    Developers may start by learning about the best secure coding frameworks and practices. They should also look into using automated tools to identify security risks within the code they write and to detect security vulnerabilities in the open source libraries they bring into their projects.

    In addition, the management team may use a secure SDLC as a vehicle to implement a strategic methodology to create a secure product. For example, managers can perform a gap analysis to gain insight into which security activities or policies currently exist, which are absent, and to see how effective they are at each stage of the SDLC.

    To achieve a streamlined SSDLC and ensure software shipping deadlines are not missed, it is necessary to establish and enforce security policies that help address high-level issues like compliance without requiring manual review or manual intervention. To achieve this, some organizations choose to hire security experts to evaluate security requirements and to create a plan that will help the organization improve its security preparedness.

    Related content: Read our guide to application security

    Examples of a Secure SDLC

    Here are some examples of popular frameworks used to establish secure software development lifecycles:

    NIST Secure Software Development Framework (SSDF) 

    The secure software development framework (SSDF) was created by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), the same organization tasked with maintenance of the National Vulnerability Database (NVD) tracking publicly known software vulnerabilities.

    The SSDF defines software development practices that can help realize a secure SDLC. The framework includes documents that outline and prescribe standards, guidelines, and software development practices. Notable practices include:

    Providing secure coding training to edevelopers, to ensure security from the start

    Automating and integrating security tests to detect security risks as close to the point of remediation as possible

    Securing open source components and libraries present within projects

    The goal of NIST’s secure software development framework is to help reduce the number of vulnerabilities in software released to production environments, as well as to mitigate the impact of potential exploitation of unaddressed and undetected vulnerabilities. The framework can also help address root causes and prevent future recurrences of vulnerabilities.

    MS Security Development Lifecycle (MS SDL)

    MS SDL was proposed by Microsoft for the purpose of supporting the modern development pipeline with dependable security considerations. The SDL includes a collection of practices chosen especially to help support compliance requirements and security assurance. Developers can use the SDL to reduce the amount and severity of vulnerabilities within their codebase while also reducing development costs and setbacks due to late-stage remediation.

    OWASP Comprehensive, Lightweight Application Security Process (CLASP)

    CLASP is built of rule-based components that implement security best practices. It can help developers secure applications at early phases of the development cycle and implement security in a structured and repeatable way.

    CLASP was developed by analyzing actual development teams in the field, deconstructing their development lifecycles, and identifying the most effective way to add security practices to their established workflows. CLASP not only addresses ways to enhance established processes, but also helps teams address specific vulnerabilities and coding weaknesses which could be exploited and lead to major security breaches.

    स्रोत : www.aquasec.com

    Secure SDLC

    Lean more about Secure Software Development Lifecycle (SSDLC), the concept that aims to incorporate security considerations and checks in every phase of the SDLC.

    Secure Software Development Lifecycle (SSDLC)


    20 min read

    How does a secure SDLC work?

    A Secure SDLC requires adding security testing at each software development stage, from design, to development, to deployment and beyond. Examples include designing applications to ensure that your architecture will be secure, as well as including security risk factors as part of the initial planning phase.

    Security is an important part of any application that encompases critical functionality. This can be as simple as securing your database from attacks by nefarious actors or as complex as applying fraud processing to a qualified lead before importing them into your platform.

    Security applies at every phase of the software development life cycle (SDLC) and needs to be at the forefront of your developers’ minds as they implement your software’s requirements. In this article, we’ll explore ways to create a secure SDLC, helping you catch issues in requirements before they manifest as security problems in production.

    With dedicated effort, security issues can be addressed in the SDLC pipeline well before deployment to production. This reduces the risk of finding security vulnerabilities in your app and works to minimize the impact when they are found.

    Secure SDLC’s aim is not to completely eliminate traditional security checks, such as penetration tests, but rather to include security in the scope of developer responsibilities and empower them to build secure applications from the outset.

    Why Is Secure SDLC Important?

    Secure SDLC is important because application security is important. The days of releasing a product into the wild and addressing bugs in subsequent patches are gone. Developers now need to be cognisant of potential security concerns at each step of the process. This requires integrating security into your SDLC in ways that were not needed before. As anyone can potentially gain access to your source code, you need to ensure that you are coding with potential vulnerabilities in mind. As such, having a robust and secure SDLC process is critical to ensuring your application is not subject to attacks by hackers and other nefarious users.

    A Brief History of SDLC Practices

    Software Development Lifecycle (SDLC) describes how software applications are built. It usually contains the following phases:

    Requirements gatheringDesign of new features based on the requirementsDevelopment of new capabilities (writing code to meet requirements)Verification of new capabilities—confirming that they do indeed meet the requirementsMaintenance and evolution of these capabilities once the release goes out the door

    The Waterfall model is one of the earliest and best-known SDLC methodologies, which laid the groundwork for these SDLC phases. Developed in 1970, these phases largely remain the same today, but there have been tremendous changes in software engineering practices that have redefined how software is created.

    Traditionally, software was written for highly specialized applications, and software programs developed using the Waterfall methodology often took years to release. Modern-day practices now focus on increasing the pace of innovation while continuing to build well-functioning software applications. Companies have moved on from Waterfall, with most using some form of the agile SDLC, first published in 2001.

    Agile development advocates for splitting up large monolithic releases into multiple mini-releases, each done in two- or three-week-long sprints, and uses automation to build and verify applications. This allows companies to iterate much more quickly. Instead of the infrequent, monolithic deployments characteristic of Waterfall-driven applications, agile development often focuses on releasing new functionality multiple times a day, building software incrementally instead of all at once.

    SDLC and Application Security

    But what about the security of these applications? Back in 1970, most attacks required physical access to a terminal on the machine running the application. The world was also a lot less interconnected, reducing the risk of external actors impacting application security. As new software development methodologies were put into practice over the years, security was rarely put in the spotlight within the SDLC.

    Instead, application security became the responsibility of IT security teams dedicated to application support. At first, applications were tested after their release only. This testing occurred in production environments, often on a yearly basis. Unfortunately, this meant that any potential vulnerabilities would be “out in the wild” for attackers to exploit for a number of weeks or even months before they could be noticed and addressed. As a result, most companies have since chosen to supplement production testing with pre-release security testing as well. This supplemental testing was placed on the critical path of the release, and applications needed to pass the security check prior to deploying the code to production.

    This security testing step often takes several weeks to complete, lengthening the release cycle. What’s worse, its outcome is completely impossible to plan for: A security test may find just a few vulnerabilities that can be fixed in a few days or could find dozens or even hundreds of vulnerabilities. Fixing the vulnerabilities found could require significant code changes that replace entire underlying components, all of which will then need to be reverified against both the application requirements as well as another security test.

    स्रोत : snyk.io

    What is the secure software development life cycle (SDLC)?

    Learn about the phases of a software development life cycle, plus how to build security in or take an existing SDLC to the next level: the secure SDLC.

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    Secure SDLC 101

    Posted by Charlotte Freeman on Monday, August 8, 2022

    Learn about the phases of a software development life cycle, plus how to build security in or take an existing SDLC to the next level: the secure SDLC.

    The digital transformation that has swept across all industry sectors means that every business is now a software business. Whether you’re selling software directly to your customers or developing it to run your operations, your organization needs to protect your bottom line by building trust in your software without sacrificing the speed and agility that will keep you competitive in your market.

    However, many organizations still lag behind when it comes to building security into their software development life cycle (SDLC). Too many development teams still think of security as a bottleneck—a problem that forces them to rework code they thought was finished, and that prevents them from getting cool new features to market.

    But insecure software puts your business at increasing risk. Cool new features aren’t going to protect you or your customers if your product is open to exploitation by hackers. Your team needs to integrate security by developing secure software processes that enable, rather than inhibit, the delivery of high-quality, highly secure products to your market.

    Secure your SDLC to secure your business

    Ongoing reports of data breaches and supply chain attacks demonstrate that compromised software can have a devastating impact on your business. When software risk equates to business risk, it needs to be prioritized and managed proactively. To manage risk and remove friction from your organization’s digital transformation initiatives, your application security programs must “shift everywhere.” This means that security must move from being the last thing development teams address to a series of processes and tools that are integrated into every stage of the application development process. And security programs work best when development teams embrace tools and solutions that plug seamlessly into development toolchains and workflows.

    The SDLC is a well-established framework for organizing application development work from inception to decommission. Over the years, multiple SDLC models have emerged—from waterfall and iterative to, more recently, agile and CI/CD. Each new model has tended to increase the speed and frequency of deployment.

    In general, SDLCs include the following phases:

    Planning and requirements

    Architecture and design

    Test planning Coding Testing and results

    Release and maintenance

    In the earliest SDLC systems, organizations waited until the testing stage to perform security-related activities. Worse yet, in many cases, insecure code went out the door because of time constraints. This is why teams instituted “shift left” processes to bring security activities into alignment with development. As SDLC systems have evolved even further, this process has expanded to the idea of “shift everywhere,” which integrates security concerns into all stages of development.

    The later a bug is found in the SDLC, the more expensive it becomes to fix. When a bug is found late in the cycle, developers must drop the work they are doing, and go back to revisit code they may have written weeks ago. Even worse, when a bug is found in production, the code gets sent all the way back to the beginning of the SDLC. At this point, the domino effect can kick in, and fixing bugs winds up bumping back other code changes. So not only is the bug going to cost more to fix as it moves through a second round of SDLC, but a different code change could be delayed, which adds costs as well.

    The better, faster, and cheaper approach is to integrate security testing across every stage of the SDLC, to help discover and reduce vulnerabilities early and build security in as you code. Security assurance activities include architecture analysis during design, code review during coding and build, and penetration testing before release.

    Here are some of the primary advantages of a secure SDLC approach.

    Your software is more secure.

    All stakeholders are aware of security considerations.

    You detect design flaws early, before they’re coded into existence.

    You reduce your costs, thanks to early detection and resolution of defects.

    You reduce overall intrinsic business risks for your organization.

    How does a secure SDLC work?

    Generally speaking, a secure SDLC involves integrating security testing and other activities into an existing development process. Examples include writing security requirements alongside functional requirements and performing an architecture risk analysis during the design phase of the SDLC.

    Many secure SDLC models are in use, but one of the best known is the Microsoft Security Development Lifecycle (MS SDL), which outlines 12 practices organizations can adopt to increase the security of their software. There is also the Secure Software Development Framework from the National Institutes of Standards and Technology (NIST), which focuses on security-related processes that organizations can integrate into their existing SDLC.

    स्रोत : www.synopsys.com

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