Developers Can Put Your Organization at Risk! Here’s How
9
Aug

Developers Can Put Your Organization at Risk! Here’s How

Web application development is a crucial task that requires the contribution of various professional skills. To build a user-friendly website, you need to improve your performance level to almost double the efficiency and at the same time stay secure. In addition, developers are aware of the fact that web application security partially operates beyond the control of the creator. After all, you can never be sure of who is on the other end of the HTTP connection, and this makes the entire web development process unpredictable. The developer must come up with many web security concerns to develop a safe and secure web application. With little or no predictable web usage, security becomes challenging. 

As a web application or mobile application developer, you may come across the following questions: 

  • Are the data safe? 
  • Will the app be protected against service attacks? 
  • How secure is the authorized access? 
  • Are there any possibilities of intruding database via SQL injection? 
  • To what extent can the webserver withstand DDoS attacks? 

One negligence can impact the efforts of the entire team throughout the development lifecycle. This article highlights the common mistakes of developers that can put your organization at risk.  

  1. Forgetting toConsider Security during the Initial Stages of Development 

The biggest mistake that the developers often make is not considering security before the actual development begins, that is, in the planning and designing stages. When planning an application, developers consider security mechanisms that are to be implemented to reduce the possibility of vulnerabilities. Neglecting security in the initial stages will create a setback in providing a secure infrastructure that can identify sensitive areas. Designing an application without the basis of security will raise scrutiny issues later in the Software Development Life Cycle 

Instead of testing the application’s security before deployment, the proactive approach is to build secure frameworks. By embedding input validation and encoding libraries, the possibilities of cross-site scripting and SQL injection attacks will be minimal. When an application is designed by targeting security in the end product, the development process can be quicker, and you can save considerable time on testing and secure deployment. 

  1. DevelopersAre Not Educated on Secure Code Practices 

There is no doubt that developers can create codes and create anything that management demands. However, when it comes to secure coding, such as learning to create secure codes, they should be provided appropriate training to create secure codes 

In the absence of secure code knowledge, developers postpone security testing until the end of the SDLC, which then results in delays to fix flaws in the app. Without training developers on secure coding, no organization can be pro in solving the security issues and deploying a secured application. There are plenty of ways to fix security issues, but the awareness and education on security can ensure a secure output from the beginning and develop belongingness with the application. 

  1. PrioritizingFunctionality Bugs over Security Bugs 

This is quite common in every organization where functionality trumps security.  Extreme pressure on developers for deploying the product within a deadline often results in developers neglecting security bugs and fixing functionality bugs. Ultimately, it is the functionality that sells, whereas security gains significance only when an incident occurs. 

The developers should ensure to consider security equally and should not neglect it for sparkly features. 

  1. NotTesting the App before Every New Release 

Every time a new version is createda new code is added or changes are made tthe existing code, which can generate a scope for flaws in the programming. Usually, developers neglect to test the security of the application when minor changes are made. Regardless of how minor these changes are, don’t skimp on security. Even the smallest loophole can attract vulnerability. Before every new release, developers shall ensure that the libraries are called correctly, components are added securely, and the new code is free from vulnerabilities. 

The static application security testing (SAST) tools enable incremental scanning with lesser duration. The SAST tools test only the newly implemented code, and incremental scanning saves resources throughout SDLC. 

  1. Neglecting toCheck for OWASP Top 10 Vulnerabilities 

OWASP security vulnerabilities find a spot on the industrystandard vulnerabilities list as they have the potential to be destructive to businesses and individuals on equal grounds. When developers are not familiar with the top 10 OWASP vulnerabilities and release the product after another security testing, the application will likely be prone to breaches. 

The vulnerabilities listed in the top 10 list are not the only issues that the developers should deal with, but they can be a good beginning for ensuring security. 

  1. NotUsing HTTPS /SSL 

Google is insisting on HTTPS for many reasons, including safetyDevelopers sometimes oversee this smallest feature, making the application insecure. Neglecting the most basic security precaution when dealing with sensitive information is as good as calling for trouble. 

The extra time involved with SSL processing gives an excuse for developers to minimize the number of pages that they protect. However, unless you are on social media websites, the extra processing time is not a critical factor.  

As mentioned earlier, developers cannot develop secured programs or write secured codes unless they are trained to do so. To ensure implicit security at every stage of the software development life cycle, it is significant that the developers are trained on the  C|ASE (Certified Application Security Engineer) security program. C|ASE is a credential from EC-Council that tests the critical security skills and knowledge required throughout a typical software development life cycle. The program focuses on the importance of the implementation of secure methodologies and practices in today’s insecure operating environment. For the benefit of the developers, C|ASE supports two programming languages: Java and .NET. This wide applicability of C|ASE has made the program popular among developers. 

Editor's Note:
Reviewed by Robert Duhart, Director, Security Architecture at Cardinal Health and Georg Grabner, Managing Partner at IonIT B.V.
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