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Helping your AppSec Team!

Bridging the Gap Between Engineering and AppSec Teams

Building secure software is a team effort. Engineering and application security teams should work hand-in-hand, sharing the responsibility to make sure the end product is robust and secure. Here, we share a roadmap for a smoother, more collaborative workflow between these two pivotal teams.

Consistency is Key

One simple yet effective strategy is to maintain consistency in the choice of frameworks and processes, including git branching strategies. This avoids the continuous learning curve for the security team and cuts down on time spent in back-and-forths.

Enhanced Peer Review

The peer review process can be a game changer when security checks are embedded into it. Just having a checklist of common security concerns can help catch potential issues early on, reducing the pressure on the appsec team.

Hiring the Right Talent

When hiring developers, it's wise to look for those with a good understanding of secure coding practices. Inject security related questions into the interview process to gauge a candidate's aptitude for secure coding.

Staying Ahead with Proactive Remediation

Engineering teams should be proactive in fixing security issues, not waiting for the security team to point them out. Regular time slots can be allocated for addressing these issues, making the process systematic and habitual.

Opt for Secure Defaults

Encourage the use of secure defaults in code settings and configurations. This not only minimizes the potential attack surface but also saves time and effort in the long run.

Regular Updates and Training

Keeping libraries and dependencies updated is a simple step with a big impact. Equally important is the ongoing training of engineering teams, nurturing a proactive security mindset through workshops, simulations, and talks on the latest security issues.

Early Engagement and Open Communication

Inviting the security team to the table in the early stages of planning helps in building a secure product from the ground up. Also, setting up dedicated communication channels for both teams to discuss updates and issues can foster better understanding and collaboration.

Testing and Documentation

Incorporating negative testing into the routine checks can prevent a lot of headaches later. Also, maintaining clear documentation of code, architecture, and security practices can be a lifeline in understanding the system and spotting vulnerabilities.

Cultivating a Security-First Culture

Finally, instilling a security-first mindset across the organization goes a long way. It's more than just a strategy; it's about building a culture where every individual values security, providing a robust foundation for the appsec team to work effectively.

By embracing these strategies, not only will the lives of appsec teams become easier, but the end product will be much more secure and reliable. It's a win-win for everyone involved.