Wednesday, January 24, 2024

DevSecOps software tools to shift left with SaaS security

Table Of Contents

    Software development is taking a turn towards a more secure and safer application development framework and practises. One of the practices that is gaining momentum is the DevSecOps software framework.

    While the conventional DevOps framework neglected the verification of critical application security guidelines until the last phase of deployment, DevSecOps pulls the focus back to integrating security testing into your CI/CD pipeline. This will help you save time, money and resources that you would have to reallocate to fixing the security issues, which would delay the process of shipping your application on time.

    As more organizations are focused on following an application security checklist through their software development process, they are also keen on investing more in security consulting with a reputable web app pentesting services company.

    Here's what you need to know about DevSecOps, its benefits and best practices that will make it easier for you to shift left with your application security program.

    What is DevSecOps?

    DevSecOps frameworks seek to add cloud and application security automation to DevOps environments. Where DevOps is concerned with automating infrastructure management and speeding up software delivery, moving to DevSecOps helps you handle the increased security burden that comes from a higher velocity of application, API and infrastructure deployments.

    DevSecOps moves you away from the conventional secure software development framework of adding security as an afterthought. DevSecOps intends to add security to your software development framework right from the inception of your apps and APIs. DevSecOps focuses on "shifting left," pushing security considerations as early as the planning and design stages, and automating those parts that no longer need human intervention.

    After this, the developers create their applications using secure coding practices by utilizing automated vulnerability management tool, and integrating real-time security feedback into their workflow. This approach identifies and fixes security vulnerabilities early, saving time and money later in the process.

    One of the ways in which you can inculcate DevSecOps in your SDLC is by adding an end-to-end automated application vulnerability scanning tool like Cyber Chief. It is a developer-friendly tool that makes it easy for you to secure your web apps, mobile apps, APIs and cloud infrastructure.

    You can schedule and scan your applications to assess the security posture of your applications. Once the scanning is done, Cyber Chief will provide you with a detailed analysis report along with possible remediations.

    And even if you feel like there is any issue that you are unable to fix, we provide dedicated AppSec professional support, in which a seasoned application security expert will assist you to secure your software at the earliest.

    Ready to end your reliance on security professionals to application security with Cyber Chief?

    Why Shift Left to DevSecOps?

    DevSecOps builds upon the foundation of DevOps by adding a layer of security throughout the entire SDLC. This will help you and your organization to achieve the aim of building secure software at speed, with zero known vulnerabilities. Here are some of the major differences between the DevSecOps and DevOps software development lifecycle.

    Advantages of DevSecOps

    1. Shift Left with Application Security:  DevSecOps aims to move security checks right from the planning and coding stages. This allows you to have more security checks as far left in the SDLC as possible. This catches vulnerabilities early, fixing them before they become costly exploits.

    2. Automated Security: Automated web application security tools become very helpful when shifting left. For this dynamic application security testing tools like Cyber Chief can help you to scan your app and APIs for vulnerabilities, perform security audits, and detect potential threats automatically. Security automation tools free up resources and allow you to maintain consistent, continuous security checks.

    3. Shared Ownership: It helps to cultivate a culture of shared responsibility for software security testing. Developers, operation teams, and security specialists work together, learning from each other and building secure systems collaboratively.

    4. Continuous Monitoring: Security doesn't end with deployment in DevSecOps. Monitor your software for security vulnerabilities and suspicious activity, even in production environments. This allows for rapid response to potential breaches.

    5. Compliance and Governance: Helps to implement clear secure software development framework and security testing policies, making it easy for you to adhere to industry regulations and best practices. This builds trust with users and protects your organisation from compliance issues.

    So, when you add application security tools like Cyber Chief, it will make it easy for you to shift left with your existing software development framework. It is one of the tools with easy integrations and a user-friendly interface.

    The automated application security tool will help your team in continuous monitoring of software application security. Not just that, you can schedule and scan your web apps, mobile apps, APIs and cloud platforms to maintain the highest level of security. 

    You can easily set the time you want to scan your software and once the scanning is completed, Cyber Chief will provide you with a detailed report and possible fixes for your security issues.

    Your developers and security teams can implement these fixes, without having to wait 2-3 weeks. The fixes are provided with code snippets, based on the language you use for your application such as Java, .NET, Spring, Ruby, Django, Golang and more.

    Thanks to Cyber Chief's instant reports, you no longer have to rely on or wait for security vendors to report on your security posture. Whether it is a penetration test report or a vulnerability assessment report, you can download these at will from Cyber Chief.

    It's easier than you think to shift left and automate security scanning for your apps, APIs and cloud environments. Want to see how Cyber Chief can get you started in mere minutes?

    What is a DevSecOps tool?

    DevSecOps tools help you to create an automated software security review framework. You can add these tools to your software development framework and instill a shift left framework for your application development process. 

    Identify Security Threats Before They are Exploited 

    We call these the "5 Fists Of DevSecOps", because they help to give you well-rounded protection as you transition from DevOps to DevSecOps:

    • Cloud Security Posture Management (CSPM): CSPM tools help you identify vulnerabilities in your cloud environment. The look a the security configurations of your cloud console and services used in running your apps and APIs and help you lock down your entire cloud infrastructure.

    • Static Application Security Testing (SAST): SAST tools analyze your code for coding practices that could lead to vulnerabilities. This will help your developers write secure code from the get-go, saving them the time and effort of making changes repeatedly.

    • Dynamic Application Security Testing (DAST): Unlike static testing methods, the best DAST tools assess your applications in their runtime environment, offering a more comprehensive view of potential vulnerabilities. These tools help you and your organization patch vulnerabilities, reducing the timeframe in which these security issues can be exploited.

    • API Security: API Scanner goes beyond traditional security measures, it assesses your APIs and helps to uncover hidden security risks. API security scanners provide instant alerts and insights into potential vulnerabilities, allowing your security team to take swift action and prevent data breaches or unauthorized access.

    • WAF: WAF prevents unauthorized access and safeguards against common attacks like SQL injection and cross-site scripting (XSS). It gives an additional layer of web application security controls, helping you secure your apps from security vulnerabilities. This is crucial for maintaining customer trust and safeguarding sensitive data.

    5 Fists Of DevSecOps
    The 5 Fists of DevSecOps. © Copyright Ayush Trivedi 2023. All Rights Reserved.

    Automate Your Application Security Assessments

    Here is how DevSecOps tools help you improve your application security posture:
    • Integration with CI/CD Pipelines: With security testing tools your security audits won’t slow you down. DevSecOps tools for application security scanning integrate seamlessly into your software development life cycle and CI/CD pipeline, automatically running security tests at every stage of the development process. So that you and your security teams can catch and fix security flaws before they reach production.

    • Continuous Monitoring: These software security testing tools constantly monitor your applications and infrastructure for suspicious activity. They will alert you to potential threats in real-time.

    • Automated Remediation: While it is not possible to automate all remediation for security flaws, particularly those found with runtime scanning, some static scanning security tools can even automatically patch vulnerabilities or reconfigure systems to mitigate security issues.

      This does save time in fixing these vulnerabilities, but it also adds the risk of inaccurate remediation.

    Empower your team to fix security issues

    • Security Dashboards: Automated web application security assessment tools give you and your security team a clear vision of your security posture with intuitive dashboards. Providing you with a visualisation of security issues and the remediation process that needs to be followed. This empowers everyone in your team to be informed and proactive about application security.

    • Security Training and Education: DevSecOps tools often come with built-in training resources and tutorials, helping developers, testers, and operations teams understand software security best practices and become part of the security solution.

    Cyber Chief is one of the few application security tools that will help you with continuous monitoring of the security of your web apps, mobile apps, APIs and cloud environments. Using its detailed vulnerability patching recommendations, your developers will be able to patch vulnerabilities quickly - particularly the critical risk vulnerabilities. 

    Along with this, if your development team is unable to resolve a vulnerability, or just has some questions they need answers for, they can get On-Demand Security Coaching from our experienced AppSec professionals.

    Along with this, if your development team is unable to resolve a vulnerability, or just has some questions they need answers for, they can get On-Demand Security Coaching from our experienced AppSec professionals.

    Everything that Cyber Chief offers is aimed at helping your teams patch vulnerabilities fast, so that they can spend more time building your new revenue-generating features. 

    Do your devs take too loooong to fix vulnerabilities? They’d take less than half that time if you gave them Cyber Chief’s on-demand security coaching.

    What are the benefits of DevSecOps?

    The answer to this question lies in the very premise of DevSecOps, which is to automate security alongside the automation of your software development, deployment and infrastructure management processes.

    The sheer velocity of software delivery made possible by DevOps means that your security burden also increases (sometimes at a disproportionate rate). Therefore, automating security activities means that you have a lesser burden to find expensive and rare application security experts. Plus, it also means that you have lower risk of unknown vulnerabilities being exploited.

    While there are many benefits of DevSecOps, these are the most common ones that we've experienced in our software teams and also seen with our clients' teams:

    1. Continuous Monitoring and Compliance

    DevSecOps promotes continuous monitoring practices for your software application security framework so that security becomes an ongoing, iterative process rather than an annual thing. An automated vulnerability assessment tool helps with continuous in your CI/CD pipelines, This will help your developers to constantly monitor security risks, allowing teams to respond swiftly to emerging threats.

    Additionally, DevSecOps facilitates compliance with industry regulations and standards, providing a structured framework to meet the required industry-specific security standards.

    2. Faster Time-to-Market for Software

    Contrary to the misconception that stringent security measures hinder development speed, DevSecOps only help you with agility and expedites time-to-market. Development teams can identify and address SaaS security issues early by integrating automated application security tools and measures into the development pipeline.

    This will help you and your organization prevent costly delays in the later stages of development, resulting in an efficient development process that meets both security and business objectives.

    3. Improved Software Quality

    SaaS web application security isn't just about preventing breaches but also about building secure and reliable software. DevSecOps practices like threat modeling and code analysis help identify and eliminate potential security vulnerabilities early on.

    An automated penetration testing tool and solution will help your operations teams create higher-quality software that's less prone to bugs and vulnerabilities.

    4. Strengthening Collaboration

    DevSecOps acts as a medium for collaboration for your development and security teams throughout the entire software development lifecycle (SDLC). DevSecOps emphasises the fact that security is not an afterthought but an integral part of the development process. It promotes cross-functional communication which accelerates the identification and resolution of security issues early in the development pipeline.

    5. Shift-Left with Application Security

    DevSecOps helps you to incorporate a security-first mindset within your development teams, fostering a cultural shift where the security of web applications is seen as everyone’s responsibility. This shift from traditional DevOps to DevSecOps will eventually lead to increased awareness of maintaining security for applications and a collective commitment to delivering secure software with zero-known vulnerabilities.

    Automated application security tools like Cyber Chief will help you and your development team move to the DevSecOps framework. It is an automated security testing tool that will help you scan your web apps, mobile apps, cloud and API security.

    You can automate end-to-end scanning of your software applications for security flaws, and get a detailed report of identified issues. Along with this, it will give you possible solutions that you can use to secure your applications and adhere to security best practices. Helping you save time and money all through your software development and CI/CD pipeline.

    Want to do a software security assessment without exposing your code? If you have Cyber Chief you can do this from your CI/CD pipelines.

    Best Practices for DevSecOps

    • Strong Authentication & Authorization: Use multi-factor authentication and role-based access security controls to verify user identities and limit permissions for applications that host sensitive information.

    • Regular Updates: Patch software and dependencies promptly to fix vulnerabilities before attackers exploit them. This will help you to keep your software secure and follow the latest software security best practices.

    • DevSecOps Platforms & Tools: Utilize integrated platforms and tools that automate security tasks throughout the development process, streamlining and optimizing security efforts. 

    • Measure & Track Maturity: Assess your DevSecOps maturity against industry standards and track progress over time. Monitor the overall strength of the software application defences.

    • Stay Informed & Vigilant: Continuously update your knowledge about emerging threats and trends in the cyber security sphere, keeping the application software firewalls up-to-date against evolving attackers. You can do this by following an application security checklist.

    • Least-Privilege Access Controls: Grant users only the minimum access needed for their profile, limiting damage from compromised accounts which can also lead to data breaches.

    What should be your next step in adopting DevSecOps?

    DevSecOps software development frameworks will empower you and your organization to easily shift left with security practises and move to a more secure development framework. One of the important things in this process would be to integrate dynamic application security testing tools like Cyber Chief. It is easy to use, is designed for developers and will secure your web apps, mobile apps, APIs and cloud environment from security risks in real time. 

    SaaS Brief