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Expert Insight: Why DevSecOps and what’s different about it? (Part 3): DevOps – The MUST HAVE practices for Seamless Security

The ‘shift left’ concept of DevSecOps means that security practices and testing are performed earlier in the development lifecycle, rather than at the end. There’s no single body with whom security solely resides during the SDLC because the responsibility lies across functions – everyone cares about security and everyone is responsible for it.

But what are the ingredients to make this happen? How do you move from an approach where security is treated as a siloed audit before Go Live with the likelihood that any issues at that stage prove costly to fix and have a far greater impact than early resolutions? Several best practices are essential to make the DevSecOps process run seamlessly.

  • Integrate automation – Automation plays an important role in realizing DevSecOps implementation through automated security controls and code review at the early stage of SDLC. The risks arising from human errors and vulnerabilities can be minimized.  With automated tools, it can help to identify potential threats from the coding process and the infrastructure which lower the cultural resistance to embedding security practices.
  • Segment networks – Network segmentation is responsible for reducing an attacker’s “line of sight” success. Clear access authentication can alleviate the cross-network vulnerability issues.  Interactions between the application and resource servers can be codified in a written security policy to identify and remediate code vulnerabilities and operation weaknesses before issue occurs.  

Conduct vulnerability management – Throughout the development and integration environment, vulnerability should be scanned, assessed, and remediated in the pre-production stage to indicate improvement areas. Penetration test and code review run by the DevOps security team can eliminate the possibilities of exploits and unexpected issues.

  • Choose the right tools – The success of the DevSecOps process is determined by the appropriate selection of security tools. Suitable security tools should be integrated with the fast-moving cycles: Continuous Integration and Continuous Delivery (CI/CD) without creating extra burdens to development and security teams.  The ideal tools should contain several attributes.

 Can identify and prioritize vulnerabilities during the programming stage.
 Minimize the work of developers in finding the security leak.
 Able to generate efficient, accurate and actionable results to the DevOps workflow.
 Provide function to track new issues from anywhere, for example, open-source software coding.

Security is now an essential, not optional component in software development.  Good consultation from a reliable service provider will be a great help to transform from DevOps to DevSecOps.

Eileen O’Mahony
General Manager, WM Promus

26th January 2023

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