Software Failures and Cyber Security

Comprehensive cyber security considers all scenarios that may result in a compromise of data. Software failures are often a result of later additions to existing code which introduces a series of complications and problems. For a security professional any software which is released too early with a lack of rigorous testing is a nuisance that could cause a serious cyber security breach.

Multiple software revisions for fixing problems followed by a sequence of patches introduces vulnerabilities to previously working components. Moreover, a patch applied ineffectively is costly and a forerunner of an imminent data breach. At the same time many software failures are also a result of pre-existing security vulnerabilities.

Another complexity of applying cyber security is that each organisation must map their own cyber security plan based on their independent technology infrastructure. As far as cyber security solutions are concerned a one size fit solution which all enterprises can apply is unavailable. However, including security in the early conception of a software development lifecycle supports the process of mitigating threats.

Failure to include cyber security planning in the software development lifecycle is a recipe for disaster. As prevention is better than cure, similarly, incorporating cyber security as early as possible within the initial software development phase is a cost saving and rewarding experience.

Threat modelling during the development chain prevents overlooked problems. Equally, the importance of rigorous software testing cannot be underestimated. Software testing techniques and methods are selected by considering what is being developed and the type of software development methodology adopted by the organisation. The waterfall development methodology incorporates software testing as an important phase.

The perils surrounding a software failure are high for any organisation from reputational damage to financial loss. All of that coupled with a data breach is expected to backtrack and overrule the original purpose of creating the application. Preparing for a cyber security breach alongside a software failure can mitigate threats allowing the organisation to focus on improving services and products.

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