Technology / Programming

Common Secure Coding Techniques

Common Secure Coding Techniques picture: A
Published on August 11, 2022

Developers need to worry about all sorts of things. Chief among them is security. Security extends past shoving a web token into the header of a POST request. Security also means following coding and deployment best practices. 

Today we will discuss a few tactics that you can use to deploy common secure coding techniques. Let's get into it!

An Overview of Secure Coding Techniques

In this video, CBT Nuggets Bob Salmans covers common secure coding techniques like using automated deployment tools like Chef and Puppet, why versioning matters, and three different resources you can use to learn more secure coding techniques.

Three References For Secure Coding Techniques

We cannot fit tons of secure coding techniques into a short article. It behooves us to mention additional resources. So, let's discuss those first. 

OWASP

First, bookmark OWASP. OWASP stands for 'Open Web Application Security Project.'

Web apps are the new Java. They are truly cross-platform. Progressive web apps, or PWAs, take web apps further by letting consumers download a web app to their computer locally. This makes web apps usable offline. Web apps are the future. 

OWASP is dedicated to helping developers create secure applications. You will find a wealth of resources for developing secure web apps at OWASP. So dig into OWASP when you have a moment. 

ASVS

ASVS is a project hosted by OWASP. ASVS stands for 'Application Security Verification Standard.' While OWASP is an organization that focuses on web app security, ASVS is its framework. In this case, it's like comparing ES6 Javascript to ESLint. ES6 Javascript lets you do all sorts of things while ESLint binds your Javascript code to specific standards. 

SAFECode

Are you tired of hearing about companies that place profit over security? We hear about data breaches in the news all the time. That's why there is SAFECode

Well… sort of. SAFECode is a non-profit organization that brings business leaders and technical experts together. This is a good thing. By combining both business intelligence and technical intelligence, we can balance good business practices with safe computing. 

We have to remember that security is technically an overhead business cost. It doesn't drive a lot of profit. Nonetheless, application security is insanely important. By bringing both parties together, we can figure out ways to create application security practices that adhere to cybersecurity best practices while navigating the rough seas of the business world at the same time. 

Bookmark SAFECode and browse through their blog when you have a chance. There is a lot of good material to learn there. 

Configuration Management For Code Security

As a DevOps engineer or a systems administrator, one of the most powerful tools you have in your arsenal for managing code security is using automated deployment and configuration pipelines. This leads to a higher-level discussion for creating standardized code configurations and codebases, but that is a tragedy for a different story. 

Controlling the deployment process and app environments is tricky. This is where automation tools like Chef and Puppet are helpful. Chef is a tool that takes predefined configurations and uses those for different tasks. For instance, a recipe in Chef can automate building and deploying applications to production environments using the same configuration across all production instances. There won't be any mistakes creating environment variables, configuring ACLs, or setting up a WAF. Puppet can be used similarly as well. 

Application Versioning For Code Security

Every developer with at least six months of experience knows about version control software. Did you know that version control apps can be used for more than just code, however? Let's look into this quickly.

You have most likely heard of Git. Git is a version control software. SVN and Mercurial are other VCSs. The whole point of a version control system is to track changes made to code, when those changes were made, who made them, and when they were made. 

Git et al. can be used for more than software, however. For instance, authors use Git to track changes in their manuscripts and novels. Chefs use Git to track changes in their recipes. And Network administrators use Git to track their network deployment configs. 

Pay attention to that last bit. Git can be used to track deployment scripts, environment configs, etc. More importantly, if a release is deployed that breaks things, it's easy to roll those changes back in Git and re-deploy within moments. 

How to Learn More About Secure Coding Techniques

Learning secure coding techniques is essential whether you are a developer or a DevOps engineer. If you want to learn more, consider taking an online course for cloud security training for software developers. CBT Nuggets has a variety of classes geared towards developers and DevOps engineers for creating secure web applications and securing the cloud. 


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