As if the digital revolution hasn’t already introduced a myriad of security-related challenges for companies of all sizes, the pandemic has made an impact, too. More businesses are turning to remote work, elevating the need for better cybersecurity measures. The need to keep remote workers and remote collaboration secure paired with the advancing methods hackers are using both push businesses to find innovative ways to build up security.
On the other end of the digital spectrum, we have highly agile and flexible DevOps. Since their primary purpose already calls for continuous testing, agile delivery, and ongoing data exchanges, DevOps teams fit well into the cybersecurity realm. As a result, more companies are pushing for a merger between the two sectors, to leverage the agility of DevOps in elevating their cybersecurity.
Unlike in the early days of digitalization when a firewall and antimalware software were all it took for security to be foolproof, businesses today need much more sophisticated solutions. DevOps has the methodology, while your cybersecurity has the tools. Paired, the two can revolutionize the way we treat and deliver security in the business world.
Supporting data security with DevOps
The idea behind breaking silos is far from new, but many have only started to embrace the benefits of the DevOps mindset within the realm of security. The core principles of the DevOps methodology include agile and transparent collaboration, continuous testing, and implementing the latest tech.
Bring the same mindset into your data security, and you have a much more robust security system in place that never stagnates and that relies on collaboration, innovation, and business-wide transparency. This is the basic premise that brings DevSecOps to life.
Simply put, DevSecOps means adopting the most cutting-edge cybersecurity protocols and preventative measures in the process of development. The old-school approach leaves security outside of the DevOps’ realm, but once they are merged, the two can help elevate the quality of development as well as the overall security of your organization.
Start with adapting your culture
To embed security into your DevOps, you need to start with the people who handle the methodology and all the related processes. That might mean introducing dedicated cybersecurity engineers into your DevOps team, or training your existing developers to master cybersecurity essentials in addition to their coding skills.
Many companies tend to bridge this knowledge gap by providing a dedicated ITIL course to their DevOps engineers and help them implement the latest security strategies within the department. That way, all the people who make up your DevSecOps team have the knowledge and the skills to detect, fix, and test security issues within the development process.
To merge security with your DevOps, it’s crucial that you revisit your existing operation protocols to understand what changes you should make. Maybe your current operations don’t leave much room for ongoing feedback, or maybe you don’t have the communication tools in place for your security teams to actively collaborate with your DevOps.
That is why it’s best to start with restructuring your internal operations in order to create a collaborative ecosystem for your DevSecOps team to use every day.
Tracking security metrics
Much like any other strong, well-defined system, your DevSecOps depends heavily on the KPIs you set to track and measure. It’s the only way to actually learn from your processes and implement better, more secure solutions in all future projects.
Every industry and niche have their own set of metrics to follow. Some of the most common KPIs should include determining the type of vulnerabilities that are the most frequent to occur, when they are discovered (in which stage of the DevOps process), most common recurring bugs, and the like.
Leveraging optimal solutions
To tie the two departments into one, the final piece of the puzzle that makes this process possible is the set of tools you’re going to use. For both the development process to enhance their levels of security and the actual cybersecurity sector to thrive, you will need to leverage a range of solutions that help these processes thrive.
Automated alerting systems – Tools to notify developers and other team members in your DevSecOps sector to deal with a potential security issue. Many of these tools double as testing and alerting tools so that they can work seamlessly in the background while you address security-related issues
AI-driven security tools – When push comes to shove, you need a tool that can help with potential solutions, not just in the process of spotting and identifying breaches or vulnerabilities. AI-based tools can help detect, but also resolve vulnerabilities, too.
Risk management tools – To avoid human error and bias, there are security tools that can help make smarter risk assessments, forecasts, and predict potential security risks before you make any system or process changes. These evaluations can help elevate the security of your entire business.
Testing and reporting – Finally, as a major portion of all DevOps processes goes to testing, your DevSecOps should follow this pattern, with the help of various tools. When you have access to properly evaluated data and filtered results, you can use it to make smarter decisions in the future, improve safety, and test your solutions before they go live.
The key takeaway: security defines your success
Removing silos in any department and connecting an organization from within brings so many benefits to the table. Introducing DevSecOps and unifying the two core concepts under a single roof means just that: enabling your business to cross-reference skills and build up cross-departmental collaboration.
What this means for the entirety of your organization is that you will finally have the kind of foundation you need to succeed. Today’s business world calls for innovative solutions, and DevSecOps is the ideal kind of seamless innovation you can use to ensure your position in your industry.
Above all, no matter the kind of service or product you provide, with DevSecOps in your organization, you will inspire customer trust at every turn.
Elaine Bennett is a digital marketing specialist focused on helping startups and small businesses grow. She's a regular contributor for Bizzmark Blog and writes hands-on articles about business and marketing.