When developing an application, security tends to be an afterthought rather than an integrated step of the SDLC process. Typically, businesses rely on security experts to perform a penetration test at the end of the cycle when the application is ready for release.
However, as previously stated in our pentest report, all pentested applications have at least one vulnerability and more than half are critical. With the scheduled release date so close, it becomes a rush to fix any detected issues to avoid delaying release.
The discovery of flaws and vulnerabilities so late in the development has a tremendous impact on cost and efficiency. The cost to fix a vulnerability found in production is 30x times higher than if you fix it directly when coding.
The benefits of integrating security earlier in the process start to become clear.
When to implement shift-left in your application development?
By including security in the early phases of the development cycle, you can reduce the cost to fix vulnerabilities, avoid delays later down the line and improve the security of your application.
As well as shifting left, we also recommend stretching right. What does that mean exactly?
Our recommendation to businesses is to include security throughout the lifecycle:
- At the beginning: Security and Privacy by design
- During the development: Automated and Manual Security Testing such as SAST/DAST and Penetration Testing
- And finally: Secure Deployment and Maintenance
How to start shifting left with your developers’ team?
There are 3 steps to start the process:
- Educate: Train & coach your developers, promote a positive security culture, identify security champions in your teams.
- Integrate: Adopt and integrate tooling such as Fortify SAST/DAST in your development pipelines.
- Automate: Automate testing so that you can keep up with the fast pace of your developments.
Together with our technology partner Micro Focus, we organised an interactive session to present the advantages of Automated Security Testing (SAST/DAST) in the shift-left process as well as some advice and recommendations from a senior consultant experienced in security testing implementations.
What are your benefits?
When implementing shift-left security, you will:
- Reduce your costs significantly
- Increase your security level
- Improve the quality of your application
- Reduce the time to market
- Increase user satisfaction and customer experience
The benefits of a shift-left security culture are not limited to the development team; there are advantages for the whole business structure. As well as increasing the security awareness of your developers, shift-left allows your sales and marketing teams to promote the security of your application and it also reassures your customers that their data is secure. How to overcome your application security challenges? Read more