What are the potential impacts of quality secure code training for your organization – and could it be a worthwhile investment?
What are the potential impacts of quality secure code training for your organization – and could it be a worthwhile investment? To find some answers, let's look at some insights from a recent study on developers' attitudes towards secure coding, secure code practices, and security operations, conducted by Secure Code Warrior with Evans Data Corp*.
When developers and their managers were asked how training has changed the way they code, each cohort responded slightly differently. These differences were in line with how they approach their work and their role within the software development life cycle. Overall though, the underlying theme is that the impact of quality secure code training is overwhelmingly positive.
55% of developers revealed that good training has increased their confidence in their coding techniques, while 53% said that good training has allowed them to be more careful when debugging and testing their own code.
Most importantly, 53% believe they have become more mindful of security while writing their code – leading to fewer vulnerabilities and less rework.
While 43% of managers agree that secure code training has helped their organizations become more careful when debugging and testing their code, the top two changes reflect managerial responsibilities. 47% revealed that good training has allowed them to be more selective with tooling choices that provide more security. While 44% indicated that secure code training and techniques have helped save time and speed up software releases.
When it comes to increasing productivity, secure coding practices can have a powerful effect. Asked to identify how secure coding could help to improve productivity, more than 63% of developers revealed that writing secure/quality code reduces rework by preventing recurring vulnerabilities. 70% of developers say that quality training could eliminate errors that later cause reworks or patches.
As developers and their managers integrate secure coding practices into their development life cycles, the real-world impacts of their training can be measured.
It seems improvements flow across the board, improving productivity right from the start of the SDLC. Over half of all developers surveyed claim that good training has improved productivity application design, coding, and debug & testing.
The debug & testing phase is the most impacted, with 56% of developers saying that they have become more productive with these activities. While better scanning and testing tools may have shortened this phase of development, secure coding practices promote the use and reuse of vetted code that is proven to have no code vulnerabilities, as well as a security-minded approach to designing applications. By “starting left” of the development life cycle with their approach to security, developers can save time during the debug phase.
Deployment, which is further downstream, is less impacted, though 44% of developers reveal that they have become more productive even in deployment. This is a result of the increased release velocity associated with secure coding practices.
There’s no doubt that quality secure code training delivers many benefits. The question is, how do you judge the quality of secure code training?
To find the answer, we asked developers what they wanted. 75% of developers preferred structured on-the-job training. They prefer the learn-by-doing method to the drudgery of theory-based static learning. Developers are on the front lines of battle when it comes to stopping vulnerabilities. As a result, they want training focused on practical applications – something most current training programs sorely lack.
As champions of change in secure coding, Secure Code Warrior takes a human-led approach to help you create a human-led defense. Our proven learning platform delivers contextual, hands-on training content across 50+ language:frameworks, with challenges that mimic those that developers face in the real world. All of which reduces cost and time to release by preventing vulnerabilities before they become tomorrow’s news.
If you’d like to see the potential impact on your teams and their ability to deliver secure code faster, book a demo now.