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October 6th, 2020

How to Integrate Security Testing Into Your Software Development Life Cycle


From design to the final product, teams must catch and fix flaws in the security mechanisms to protect data and maintain functionality as intended. This process is a vital step to ensure a secure software development life cycle (SDLC).

Along with hiring the right professionals and tools for the job, there are many additional steps to guarantee success upon completion. Not only is it viable to save on time and cost, but it also ensures that the development is following security architecture and design. Read on to learn what security testing consists of and how you can optimize it for a thorough and efficient scanning process.

Start Sooner Rather Than Later

If there’s one key takeaway, it’s that security assessments are an incremental, continuous process. The purpose of security testing is to detect vulnerabilities, so it’s important to start at the earliest stages of the SDLC. Why? If you wait until the last stage to scan, you’ll pick up many flaws, and you’ll spend more time and resources reviewing and fixing codes.

Hire Developers With Security Mindset

Developers are focused on deadlines and code – but web application security risk is a whole other story. While developers aren’t required to be part of the security team, they should become familiar with basic concepts. The more versed they are in issues, the more likely they’ll be able to catch onto it ahead of time in the code level.

Vulnerabilities are introduced after infrastructure. Through feedback, developers will know how to detect them once and have the means to avoid repeating the same errors. This is another reason why continuous testing is important – it’s better to go back and address issues while the coding is still recent, rather than wait until after deployment.

Establish Security Protocols and Measures

The best thing you can do is contract security services to bridge the gaps in your program. When scheduling an appointment with professionals, consider your goals and if they have the testing program to fit your needs.

Companies exist that make assessments on a case-by-case basis and have a methodology in place to help you achieve the desired results, like Emagined demonstrates. On top of self-assessment and in-house checks, you should also seek third-party services such as:

  • Penetration Testing
  • Managed Security Operations Center (SOC)
  • Incident Response
  • Real-time Monitoring and Protection
  • And many more

Follow a Security Testing Strategy

The software testing strategy should be based on your individual organizational structure and what’s allowed in the SDLC process. Set goals and adhere to compliance requirements to minimize potential risks and meet the standard defenses. Your software testing strategy should have the following:

Goals and Metrics

From the beginning, everyone should be on board of what goals and metrics are expected from the testing program. Use reports and gather feedback at every step of the operation to ensure continuous improvement, monitor progress, and meet the stated requirements.

Reliable and Easy-to-Use Testing Tools

There’s no point in paying for expensive products if they’re too complicated or unadaptable for your project. Keep your software testing tools simple, especially if you’re dealing with developers that are new to security testing.


Avoid extensive manual testing by offering source code analysis tools. This will save time and cost by allowing developers to input code and receive results at each milestone.

Work Smarter, Not Harder

Security considerations should be applied to every step in the SDLC. While testing should always be integrated as early as possible, it’s more important for developers and other team members to have the tools, methodology, and security mindset for a fast and efficient program.

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