When DevOps was first introduced, it helped to revolutionize the IT industry and change the way organizations approach their software delivery. With the correct implementation, DevOps ensures companies can get more done, introduce greater innovation, and deliver with maximum efficiency.
However, there is one issue that comes along for the ride: vulnerability. Security requirements, especially in this day and age, have been left unattended for the most part by DevOps. As a result, organizations have to take a proactive approach to ensure their software doesn’t feature flaws that hackers can exploit.
To help in that regard, below are five steps your organization should take when securing your DevOps software projects.
1. Audit your current IT infrastructure
Prior to incorporating a sweeping change like DevOps, it makes sense to take a closer look at your current IT infrastructure. This includes auditing your processes, practices, software, and systems. By doing this, you can identify any potential weak points in your IT system’s security – and eradicate them before you introduce DevOps into the process.
2. Incorporate a DevSecOps approach
Forget about making security checks in the same way you normally do. With the assistance of a Devsecops approach, you flip the script upside down. Traditionally, security checks are completed at the end of a product’s cycle. With DevSecOps, however, security checks are automated and made at all stages of software development – including from the very beginning.
Note: DevSecOps doesn’t replace DevOps and the methodology it provides. The general workflow remains the same. The only difference is that you add security requirements into the fray.
3. Monitor code dependencies constantly
Even with automated security systems in place, you cannot rely on these to cover everything. This is certainly the case if you download a piece of open-source software, add it to your project, and then realize it's full of vulnerabilities and security flaws.
Now you might think that you’ll build all of your code in-house and avoid downloading external software for your project. Yet if you decide to develop each module from scratch, this is going to be a large waste of resources and time.
As open-source software will frequently be used, it’s important that code dependencies are checked on a regular basis. This way any flaws/vulnerabilities can be quickly removed from the process.
4. Integrate with DevOps tools
When you select a security integration tool that works seamlessly with your other DevOps tools, this is going to make life a whole lot easier. The best method to integrate these tools is with API interactions, as this lowers the amount of configuration required for each tool. A solution such as Selenium or Splunk is recommended.
5. Regularly educate your developers
Even if your developers successfully complete a DevOps project, their education has only just begun. This isn’t a one-time effort. It is a continual journey where your developers have to remain ahead of the curve when it comes to security. Being slow to identify a threat or install a patch could cause lasting damage to your organization.