What is DevSecOps?
DevSecOps is a methodology of implementing security practices within the DevOps processes. DevSecOps involves creating a ‘security as code’ culture with an emphasis on seamless and flexible collaboration between release engineers and security teams. The DevSecOps approach, similar to DevOps, is aimed at formulating new solutions that cater to the complex software development processes within an agile framework.
DevSecOps is a necessary and natural solution to the bottleneck effect caused by older security models which impacts the modern continuous delivery pipeline. The aim is to close the traditional gap between IT and security while making certain that the delivery of code is quick and safe. This allows teams to move away from silo thinking to gain improved communication and shared responsibility of security tasks during all the various phases of the delivery process.
In the DevSecOps approach, two seemingly diverging goals, namely; the speed of delivery and secure code, are blended together to create a single streamlined process. As it aligns with the lean practices in agile, security testing is conducted in iterations without it having
an adverse effect or decreasing the pace of delivery cycles. Critical security issues are managed more effectively as and when they appear, and not after a threat or compromise has happened.
Benefits of a DevSecOps Approach
Security protocols that are embedded within the development process instead of being implemented as a ‘layer on top’, enable DevOps and security experts to harness the power of agile methodologies — working together as a team — without short-circuiting the goal of developing secure code.
Two main advantages of leveraging SecOps (Security Operations) are getting more ROI from existing security infrastructure and improved operational efficiencies in security as well as the rest of IT.
Another key benefit is the ability to fully utilize the potential of cloud services. For instance, companies using the services provided by Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud can gain the benefits of increased preventive and detective security controls within the continuous integration and deployment model of AWS. As more and more companies are shifting towards cloud applications to keep operations running, security protocols independent of those executed by AWS are vital for preventing expensive downtimes.
The safety measures put in place by the DevSecOps approach have several other advantages as well. These are:
- Higher speed and agility for security teams
- Capable of responding to change and needs rapidly
- Enhanced collaboration and communication between teams
- More opportunities for developing automated builds and quality assurance testing
- Early detection of vulnerabilities in code
- Team member assets are freed to contribute to high-value work.
Getting Started with DevSecOps
A cultural and technical shift towards the adoption of the DevSecOps approach enables companies to manage security threats more effectively and in real-time. It is vital to regard security teams as valuable assets that are capable of preventing slowdowns rather than being a hindrance to agility. For instance, early detection of a poorly designed application incapable of scaling in the cloud allows companies to save valuable time, resources and computing expenses.
Scalability in the cloud depends upon embedding security controls on a bigger scale. Rigorous threat modeling and management of system build is required as technology-driven businesses are evolving at a frantic pace.
Let’s look at six key components of a DevSecOps approach:
- Code analysis — Provide code in small sections allowing vulnerabilities to be identified quickly.
- Change management –Better speed and efficiency by enabling anyone to submit changes, then judge whether the change would be positive or negative.
- Compliance monitoring — Be prepared for an audit at any time (this means maintaining a constant state of compliance, including collecting evidence of GDPR compliance, PCI compliance, etc.).
- Threat investigation — Detecting potentially harmful threats with every core update and being able to respond to it quickly.
- Vulnerability assessment –Detecting new vulnerabilities using code analysis, then analyzing the quickness of response and their patching.
- Security training — Training software and IT engineers using guidelines for set routines.
If you have yet to start the process, there is no better time than now to merge your security goals with DevOps and instill the ‘Security as Code’ DevSecOps approach.