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WHAT ARE THE REAL ISSUES FOR DEVELOPERS?
Developers are facing a constant avalanche of issues. It is virtually impossible to keep up-to-date with every single security flaw. Even if you do follow general secure coding methods, you may still not have done enough to ensure you have covered every known vulnerability.
MANUAL PEER REVIEWS ARE NOT ENOUGH
Manual code/peer reviews are time consuming and laborious and often cause your team to miss many details, which will impact the quality of your review. When you identify bugs in your code, it can be very tiresome finding ways to remediate them, especially if you are unfamiliar with the problem. On top of that, Internet search engine guidance is usually inconsistent.
LATE TESTING AND DELAYS
As testing often happens late in the process, long feedback loops will affect your productivity as well as your release schedule. Most of the time, it is not immediately clear how to prioritize bugs for remediation or to recognize which represent the most immediate threat.
Existing SAST tools often provide too many false positives which means manually sifting through code only to discover it really isn’t a defect at all. A smart SAST tool can solve all these problems.
What is SAST?
Static Application Security Testing (SAST) is designed to analyze source code to reveal conditions that are associated with a wide range of vulnerabilities. SAST can analyze an application in a non-running state. SAST is the easiest way to increase the quality and security of your applications.
Why Do You Need SAST?
SAST gives you constant access to best practices and the latest knowledge from recognized sources on how to write high quality code such as SEI CERT. It helps you adhere to industry compliance standards and corporate requirements and tells you if the security measures taken in your source code satisfy the application’s specific security requirements. SAST also provides you with guidance and education on security issues and how to remediate them, as well as allowing you to foster a security by design mindset where prevention is better than remediation. By helping you adopt a ‘shift-left’ testing culture and identify issues early, SAST allows you reduce lengthy efforts required for bug fixing and speeds up your development process.
It costs 6x more to fix a bug found during implementation than to fix one identified during design. 15x more in testing and over 100x more after deployment.
When should you use SAST?
SAST is also commonly referred to as Static Code Analysis. Though the emphasis is on security, static code analysis is also important for adhering to quality and compliance standards.
Use it during coding, during source code pull requests, during the build and just before deployment. It works best when it is integrated into the development process.
Use it to support your development team by identifying vulnerabilities and highlighting risk levels. Knowing which risks are the most urgent allows your team to prioritize defect correction.
Use it as an important component in quality assurance and the formal code review.
Use it to complement peer reviews of code but not replace them.
What should you look for when selecting a SAST tool?
Fast scan times in minutes not hours
Clearly highlights the code error with guidance for remediation
High levels of accuracy in defect detection
Identifies the trace path of data flows showing how the defect can affect other areas of the application
Integration to IDEs and CI/ CDs
Allows for customizable rules
Scalability for multiple programming languages
Major vulnerabilities are detected e.g. OWASP Top Ten
What should you avoid when selecting a SAST tool?
Limited number of compliance standards
Limited number of programming languages
High number of false positives
Pattern analysis only
Confidence levels in proving true positives
Difficult set up procedures
Xcalibyte’s SAST solutions have been specifically created to ensure software developers can quickly and accurately identify code errors for immediate remediation. With Xcalibyte, you can confidently create high quality software that meets your compliance standards and limits the number of vulnerabilities.
Want to see how XcalScan can help you with shift left testing?