With mobile app development, security isn’t always incorporated throughout the development lifecycle. In many cases, security gaps are addressed at the end, or worse, after a security breach has occurred. The reason? Many development teams are racing to market with their apps. Being “first” can often make or break an app publisher.
Unfortunately, there’s a perception that security can slow mobile development teams down. The reality is that with secure coding expertise and the right tools, this process could happen much faster. As mobile teams iterate, they can quickly progress through all the phases of the secure software development lifecycle (SSDLC).
Here are three ways to get started with secure mobile app development.
Every company’s mobile app security needs are different. These may be driven by local or industry-specific compliance regulations such as:
As your application is being conceptualized and planned, offer compliance-based security awareness training sessions for developers based on the specific regulations they need to follow. This will save time later in the development and testing phases of the software development lifecycle.
During the requirements phase, the team lists out all of the business and solution-specific needs for the mobile application. Specific to security requirements, teams start working on threat modeling and risk modeling. In other words, they look at the application and its third-party dependencies to evaluate risk.
In the risk analysis and threat modeling process, your team should consider these key security questions, among others, before moving forward:
Knowing the answers to these questions can help define how to proceed with architecture and design of the application, and eventually development.
Every developer on the team should follow secure coding best-practices. Incorporating security directly into the development process makes security more proactive, rather than reactive to potential incidents. Some secure coding basics, according to Carnegie Mellon’s CERT, include:
Following these best practices will help the organization get closer to achieving its mobile security goals.
This blog post covers just a few phases in the SSDLC. Teams should continuously incorporate security throughout the lifecycle – for both new mobile applications and updates alike. Our latest eBook walks through each phase of the SSDLC, offering practical tips and tools for teams to bake security into their mobile app development process.