Massive growth has been seen in software development especially in the past decade bearing in mind the increasing dependence of businesses on software systems and applications. However, as software systems and applications continue to evolve, so does the vulnerability to cyber-attacks.
Processes like container image scanning are helping in enhancing the security of containerized applications and mitigating the risk of cyberattacks. While vulnerability scanning tools aid in checking security threats in web applications, we have a long road ahead. So much in fact, that in the first half of 2022, there were 236 million ransomware attacks reported.
Initially, businesses hesitated in shifting from localized hardware and software to cloud computing. But, things drastically changed during the pandemic. Google Cloud, Amazon Web Services, and Microsoft Azure – these giant cloud services were the top priority for this transition.
With the incredible success of cloud computing, experts are warning about the possible threats of cyberattacks due to software architecture issues, usage of APIs, and lack of IT professionals in the industry. The increased usage of cloud computing services urges software developers to act swiftly to enhance security. Here are the latest security trends in software development aimed at preventing cyberattacks and protecting data and systems:
1. Adoption of more Security Tools & Technologies:
One of the most effective ways to counter cybersecurity threats is to upgrade existing security tools and technologies. For this reason, developers have been using security ops software that identify and remove malware from the system to prevent cyberattacks.
Firewalls are another crucial tool that helps prevent unauthorized system access. This works by blocking incoming traffic that doesn’t fit with the pre-existing rules for the system. Tufin, AlgoSec, FireMon, and RedSeal are the top firewall security management systems.
Moreover, encryption tools prevent the accessibility of sensitive data to cyberattacks. Intrusion Detection Systems (IDS), malware scanners, and vulnerability scanners aid in preventing cyberattacks. Security breaches are identified by IDS, which raises an alarm to alert security personnel. Whereas, malware scanners detect and remove malware from systems, and vulnerability scanners scan system security to remove vulnerabilities.
2. Evaluating the IT Department:
The shortage of IT professionals is a big reason why it is getting easier for malicious actors to breach security. Usually, businesses neglect the significance of hiring security experts resulting in compromised security. In 2022, data breaches cost businesses around $4.35 million. For this reason, businesses have started hiring SecOps engineers and working more closely with them to deal with security challenges effectively.
High-quality software development and cybersecurity go hand in hand. So, instead of outsourcing the cybersecurity side, it is beneficial for companies to either completely outsource software development along with the cybersecurity department, or keep both things in-house.
Another trend that has picked up in software development in the past few years is the widespread use of APIs. Application Programming Interfaces connect different components within an application by allowing them to communicate and work seamlessly. Developers are now able to create new applications that can easily integrate with existing ones as opposed to building everything from scratch, making the software development process flexible and efficient.
On the other hand, they create a security threat because they are hard to source. A high possibility is there that an engineer will use APIs developed by someone else, as it is common for developers to reuse APIs. By doing so, they make the system vulnerable to serious security risks. However, these security risks are now being mitigated with the help of better practices such as using gateways and central OAuth servers.
4. Software Bill of Materials:
Developers often reuse codes and the practice is very common as it enables developers to complete projects timely and develop more sophisticated software. However, if the original code may be unreliable and unsafe then the entire system will become more vulnerable to cyberattacks.
Businesses integrate multiple small software, APIs, and firmware. And in case of a security breach, the damages are catastrophic. For instance, if sensitive user data is compromised during financial transactions, this breach could cost millions to a business.
To counter this business risk, it is expected that SBOMs will be required for government agencies. A Software Bill of Materials (SBOM) requires a business to add a list of components used in software development including any firmware or APIs. Undoubtedly, this will help in vetting that a software is secure and safe.
5. Zero Trust and Access Control:
The best way to protect IT resources is to develop a zero-trust concept. In this concept, anyone who interacts with the software is treated as a suspect. Access to components is provided depending on the permission. Additionally, it needs verification of each user’s identity, thus providing a robust protection model that comprises multi-factor authentication.
Many software development teams and businesses alike have now started moving to this model in order to tighten their security pipelines and the trend is only expected to grow.
In conclusion, security practices are now taking a turn for the better when it comes to software development. Understanding the dynamics of the modern world, it’s only imperative that businesses place a specialized focus on cybersecurity to make sure cyberattacks don’t result in financial losses.