Software Composition Analysis beneefits
With open-source code being used so prominently in today’s world, organizations have had to prioritize security to prevent hackers from gaining access to their sensitive data.
Developers are having to create applications faster. Open-source code is one of the most efficient resources that they can use to their advantage. It allows them to use code that has already been written and implement it into their application.
However, this also increases the potential for security vulnerabilities. Software composition analysis (SCA) tools can help enable companies to minimize these security flaws whilst using open-source elements.
This post takes you through more about what SCA is so that you can feel more confident about how to use it within your company to keep your data protected.
Software Composition Analysis Explained
SCA is a part of application security testing tools that handle open-source elements. You can use SCA tools to carry out scans on the code that’s being used within applications. These scans can be used with automated features that make them super easy and convenient to use.
These scans provide you with information on license compliance, security flaws, registries, and containers. In addition to this, SCA tools are incredibly useful when it comes to providing you with solutions to any security vulnerabilities that are found. Not to mention, security risks are prioritized to help developers and security teams work more effectively and quickly.
How SCA Works
Now that you know a little more about SCA tools, let’s take a look at the different processes that make these tools work so effectively.
As we mentioned, SCA tools carry out scans and this is the first action that is taken. Once you’ve been provided with details about the application, you’re left with a deeper understanding of all of the components involved. This helps developers keep all elements more secured.
Many organizations use SCA tools to discover vulnerabilities as their main use. The best SCA tools provide you with reports about which open-source elements within your apps have vulnerabilities while also giving you details about how you can make changes to the code to make it fit better.
Not to mention, a high-quality SCA tool will let you know when open-source libraries that you’re using need to be patched or updated.
After the automated scans have been carried out, the SCA tool will provide you with details about your open-source licenses. These reports include details about compatibility with company policies so that you can keep them up to date and compliant.
Additional Features of SCA
Some SCA tools come with additional features such as being able to enforce policies automatically. SCA tools can achieve this by scanning all of the open-source elements within your app and comparing them with your company’s existing policies. This enables it to create automated changes to your policies.
Developers can work more efficiently using SCA tools that automated tracking, selection, and approval of open-source elements. Developers can simply look at the reports that have been given and start working on applications.
You can also find SCA tools that notify you if there are any security flaws within a specific open-source element. This allows developers to prevent adding open-source components that aren’t completely secure from the very beginning stages of development.
Applying SCA Security Models
With the growth of open-source code being used, there are also more security risks coming to light. Using SCA tools to simply discover these threats isn’t enough to improve your application security.
You must be able to take the next steps to fix the issues once they’ve been detected and prioritized by your SCA tool. It’s important for companies to also understand that they’ll never completely remove threats.
Instead, you should aim to minimize the security flaws as much as possible. SCA security tools help organizations do this by scanning for vulnerabilities and providing you with remediation methods.
SCA tools are still being developed and there are now options that companies can use to accurately prioritize security risks. Since these SCA tools can automatically detect security vulnerabilities, it saves developers a lot of time and enables them to focus on fixing the issues.
By using SCA tools that prioritize vulnerabilities, developers can focus on the biggest issues and avoid fixing smaller problems first and letting the bigger vulnerabilities be exploited further.
Once security risks have been prioritized, SCA tools provide developers with details on the location of the vulnerability, as well as specific tips on how they can fix it.
Remediation features can be automated and activated to work once vulnerabilities are detected. It’s good practice to make sure your open-source elements are all properly patched to prevent them from being exploited through other vulnerabilities in your network.
The top SCA tools can be easily integrated into your existing workflow so that security is made to be just as important as the development process. This helps companies detect and fix security flaws at an earlier stage where they’re easier to deal with.
Tips For Integrating Software Composition Analysis Tools
Containers & Kubernetes
Kubernetes and containers are being used more than ever in today’s landscape and it can lead to a range of security issues. SCA tools can help this problem by scanning open-source elements from within container environments.
The tool can then discover security risks and any license compliance issues and put policies in place automatically to keep your data protected from legal liability.
SCA tools that have detailed databases will help your company keep its applications and containers more secure. This is because SCA tools can use information from these databases to detect the latest security risks and be able to create and provide you with the most up-to-date solutions.
Open-source components are centralized which makes using databases so important. Without detailed and regularly updated databases, your SCA tool could be giving you out-of-date fixes that are ineffective.
An SCA tool that includes automated policies can make things easier for your company. You’re still able to be flexible with automated policies by being able to alter the policies to fit the requirements of your company.
Developers can work more productively by using SCA tools as they automated processes that include remediation, approvals, tracking, and selection.
With more companies relying on using open-source code to help their developers work faster, it’s important for them to also prioritize their security. Open-source elements increase the chances of security vulnerabilities, but SCA tools can help minimize these vulnerabilities.
We hope that you’ve learned more about what SCA is and how your company could be using tools to keep your open-source environments more secure.