DEVSECOPS: DEFINITION, METHODOLOGY, BEST PRACTICES
- Samia Rai
Let’s answer the question you are here for: What is DevSecOps? DevSecOps is an abbreviated word for development, security, and operations in the simplest terms. Its main scope is to hold everyone accountable to apply security decisions and actions in the same proportion and speed as decisions and actions for development and performance. DevSecOps represents a natural and necessary change in how development agencies deal with security. In the past, security was ‘focused’ on software at the end of the development cycle. Almost as recently thought by a separate security team and evaluated by a different quality assurance team (QA). However, with the increase in speed and frequency of releases, these traditional security and operations teams cannot keep up with the requirements.
To address this specific scenario, organizations need to build continuous security across the SDLC to ensure DevOps teams can deliver secure applications efficiently and faster. The quicker one can offer protection on the go, the more one can quickly monitor, evaluate, find and correct security vulnerabilities effectively. The concept is part of a “shifting left,” which offers security tests to developers, allowing the team to fix security issues in their code closer to real-time rather than waiting until the end of the SDLC.
Through DevSecOps technology, organizations can integrate security effortlessly onto their CI/CD practice throughout the planning, coding, building, testing and release. These tasks, alongside continuous and real-time feedback loops and insights ensure a better performance rate.
The advantages of DevSecOps technology are simple: Improved automation throughout the software delivery route while eliminating errors and reducing attacks, errors, and downtime. Organizations looking to integrate security into their DevOps framework complete the process using the appropriate DevSecOps tools and procedures.
Let’s take a look at the typical DevSecOps workflow:
- The process starts with the developer creating the code and committing all of the changes made to the version control management system,
- Once one commits the changes, the developer then performs a static code analysis to detect defects, errors, and bugs to maintain the code quality.
- After everything checks out, the developer creates an environment, usually based on the infrastructure-as-code tools. Within this set environment, the application is developed and deployed.
- The set standards and security operations are also applied simultaneously for enhanced security. The test automation is deployed against the newly created application for the proper screening process, ensuring a successful and error-free app deployment.
- After resolving any errors or security threats, the application is ready for the production environment. Continuous monitoring for the application is there to ensure optimal health and performance.
DevOps Technology Vs DevSecOps Security
When it comes to DevSecOps and DevOps, users compare and even openly debate the two as opposing components. While the topic remains complex, the one certain fact is that the two terms are not interchangeable. However, some experts argue that DevSecOps is compatible and even required for DevOps to work optimally. Focusing on the topic, let’s look at a side by side comparison of how they differ and why experts compare DevSecOps alongside DevOps.
DevOps aims to increase productivity through the collaboration of the development and operations team. However, DevSecOps aims to provide premium security while increasing the overall process’s efficiency, accessibility, and scalability. While DevOps emphasizes software development, DevSecOps focuses on creating secure and compliant codes to reduce downtime and data loss. Another major difference is the concept of security. In DevSecOps technology, one focuses on all security concerns throughout the development. However, in DevOps practice, it is implemented only after development. These practices are an evolution and enhanced version of the traditional security approach.
There is an ongoing debate that DevOps does not focus on security often, slowing down the development cycle overall. However, with DevSecOps, you have reduced risk and time consumption by resolving security breaches. Hence, lessening the amount of rework in the long run. DevSecOps unites the conflicting goal of faster deployment through secure and reliable measures.
Why Do We Need DevSecOps?
Over the last decade, we have gone through exponential changes in the IT infrastructure and landscapes. When it comes to major organizations, they have radically thrived and benefitted through the shift to agile cloud computing platforms and dynamic applications. Ultimately DevOps has gone above and beyond, storming ahead in terms of scalability, functionality and even speed of releases. However, with the constant new developments, many compliance monitoring and security tools are yet to keep pace. As a result, various application techniques apply inadequate practices and measures. This is where DevSecOps technology comes in.
In the development scenario, when developers focus on security from the outset in real-time, it is easier and even more cost-effective to detect and fix security threats. That too before affecting the application during or after the release. Various organizations in multiple industries are now implementing the DevSecOps methodology to break down the barrier between development, security, and operations. The initial results are faster, and the security aspect is better. Implementing security protocols in the development process rather than as an afterthought. This allows DevOps and security professionals to gain the ability of agile methodologies for improved operational efficiency. Another major point to consider is a better ROI through the organization’s security infrastructure. There is a better understanding and communication between each team as a collaborative effort. This allows greater flexibility, better automation, and more opportunities to focus on pressing issues.