ROI & Risk: 3 Steps to Find Value in App Security


The threat is out there. Every day a new company is brought to its knees by a security breach. It’s enough to make a CIO throw up his hands in disgust and take an early retirement.

But it doesn’t have to be. Risk should be managed—not avoided.

A large-scale security breach can be costly in more ways than one. Even in the simplest terms of the direct costs to remediate it can ruin the ROI for a major software integration. That’s why it’s necessary to turn a critical eye to your vulnerabilities and proactively address any deficiencies.

A proactive approach may require an investment up front, but that is a small price to pay for long-term piece of mind and can serve as a valuable tool to safeguard your ROI.

These three simple tips can get you on the right track to manage risk and maximize ROI.

  1. Build for your needs
    Your business has specific needs and you need to meet those needs through custom software, built for you. You need these creative and innovative solutions to meet your customers’ needs and differentiate yourself in a competitive marketplace.

    There is a level of inherent risk with custom software development. That risk can be managed by the quality of development resources. Even “off the shelf” software comes with risks, although it has proved to be an untenable solution. Your business requires (and your customers expect) custom software that is tailored to your specific needs and provides a meaningful advantage.

    Every company has vulnerabilities and varying levels of security risks, but don’t let that cloud your judgement. Find the business problem and turn it into an opportunity. Custom software can provide an improved experience and be the investment that becomes the major differentiator for customers.

    You’ll be thankful you did, and so will your customers.

  2. Don’t bury your head in the sand
    Like an ostrich too scared to cope with the dangers surrounding it, companies often feel overwhelmed by the security vulnerabilities in their systems. In many cases, they know there are weak points but choose to ignore them and hope they remain hidden. That’s the equivalent of playing a high-stakes game of roulette with your company’s future.

    Do you know what your odds are of winning on a single role of the roulette wheel?

    A hint—they’re not good.

    It’s 37:1.

    If you could improve your odds on the roulette wheel, you’d probably do it, right? Wouldn’t it be nice to flip the odds on the house? You may not be able to change the odds at the casino, but you can in software application security.

    By using a risk-based approach and taking a hard look at your vulnerabilities, you can gain perspective and take the first steps toward safeguarding the business. After all, burying your head in the sand is not a strategy.


  3. Find it and fix it
    Once you’ve made the decision to be proactive, you have to find the vulnerabilities in your systems. There are three components of the process which are necessary to ensure a comprehensive view of your situation:
    • Software composition analysis (SCA) identifies where reusable components are within applications and detects vulnerabilities
    • Static application security testing (SAST) scans source code of the most commonly-used programming languages, identifying vulnerabilities
    • Dynamic application security testing (DAST) continually scans websites as they evolve, providing automatic detection and assessment of codes changes and alerting for newly discovered vulnerabilities
      Once vulnerabilities have been identified, you need to fix them fast. That’s where speed and security are critical.

Once vulnerabilities have been identified, you need to fix them fast. That’s where speed and security are critical.

Now the conundrum, do you pull existing resources from inflight projects to fix vulnerabilities thus delaying your promised delivery dates or do you look externally? It’s unlikely you have all the experienced resources to handle this type of development in-house. That means bringing in external resources to solve complex problems and execute on the plan. With sensitive projects, U.S. based software teams play a vital role in meeting the needs of corporate application development by delivering quality and speed at a low cost.

ROI and risk go hand in hand. By managing risk, you can secure the ROI needed. But success takes a proactive approach that requires an experienced critical eye to software vulnerabilities and then brings the right teams together to solve the problem.

Find it. Fix it. Breathe easier.


View More of Monty's Posts