Discussion on Information Security

Information Security

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Information Security

The development of software is comprised of the fulfillment of complex and challenging tasks. To ensure that every software is developed effectively, the involved teams approach the challenges they encounter differently but follow specific standardized methodologies such as agile (Basler et al., 2013). The development of software is mainly constituted of four main activities. The first activity involves the specification or requirements. This step is an essential step since the stakeholders and teams involved in software production meet and decides on the software they will develop. The second activity entails designing and implementing (Basler et al., 2013). During this stage, the team members develop and implement the software based on the predefined specifications. Thirdly, the involved team members meet and validate the software. The team members have to ensure that the developed software conforms to specifications and will meet the customer’s needs (Basler et al., 2013). The last step entails maintenance and scaling whereby the team is tasked with maintaining, modifying, and scaling the new software to ensure it fits in the changing customer and market requirements. A wide range of elements has to be considered when developing software. The essay discusses the controls used by software developers and the testing procedures that can be invoked to use during development. Lastly, the essay will discuss one flaw in software development, its consequences, and the procedures established to combat it. 

Controls used by Software Developers

Quality control is one of the primary control used by software developers. It entails reviewing the quality of the different components that are involved in the development of the software. Inspection forms the largest part of quality control (Harris et al., 2006). All the team members and stakeholders involved in developing the software are engaged in the finished product’s physical examination to ascertain if it has attained the desired quality standards (Harris et al., 2006). During the inspection process, the inspectors are provided with a list comprising of descriptions about the unacceptable defects.

The second type of control used is user needs. When developing software, the end-user must be identified before the software’s actual development. Evaluating user needs always begins with asking an array of questions concerning who the software’s end-user is. Additionally, it entails assessing the software’s limitations and how interacting with the software design may alter their functionality or safety (Harris et al., 2006). It is essential to consider whether developed software may have multiple users for different cases. A careful analysis of the end-user and audience at the outset of the software helps establish the software’s settings. 

The last type of control used in software development is risk analysis. Risk management in software management entails various phases and begins with requirements that run parallel to the development process. According to research, risk analysis needs a multi-functional team that will help determine how the software will affect risk and how the identified risk can be mitigated (Harris et al., 2006).

Testing procedures that can be used during the development of a software

Testing is an essential aspect of software development since it ensures that software that meets the desired quality standards is delivered to customers (Basler et al., 2013). Most software developers always automate testing by using Continuous Integration tools, which helps produce software that is ready for deployment into the production environment. The “box “approach is one of the testing procedures that can be invoked during software development (Basler et al., 2013). The box approach is divided into white and black box testing. The white box testing entails verifying the internal structures or workings of a software (source code).

Additionally, it tests for the programming skills that have been used in designing the test cases. During this process, the tester selects the inputs to exercise paths via the codes and determines the desired outputs. White box testing can be used at the unit, integration, or system levels of the software testing process (Basler et al., 2013). Black box testing entails examining or analyzing the developed software without any insights into its internal implementation. Black box testing involves analyzing equivalence partitioning, boundary value analysis state transition tables.

Flaws in Software Development

Soft wares are always faced with different flaws that can significantly impair its operations. One of the discussed flaws is broken authentication (Arce et al., 2014). The incorrect implementation of the various functions related to management and session management is one of the primary causes of broken authentication. The incorrect implementation of these elements always results in attackers being able to compromise passwords, keys, and session tokens (Arce et al., 2014). Authentication is often referred to as the validation of the identity of an entity. The development of secure software design is always aimed at preventing an entity such as a user, attacker, or any other individual from accessing a system without prior authentication (Arce et al., 2014). The authentication of a user is significant since it prevents the user from changing identity without being re-authenticated. One of the main consequences of a broken authentication is that an unauthorized entity can bypass authentication mechanisms, enabling them to access the system or service they should not.

One of the procedures that can be instituted to combat broken authentication is password. Passwords in systems require that the system associates a particular password with a specific user (Arce et al., 2014). Therefore, it is vital to store passwords safely to ensure that different entities do not have access to a system. Secondly, a single authentication mechanism should prevent the systems from being bypassed by foreign entities.

References

Arce, I., Clark-Fisher, K., Dasani, N., DelGrosso, J., Dhillon, D., Kern, C. … & Seltzer, M. (2014). Avoiding the top 10 software security design flaws. IEEE Computer Society Center for Secure Design (CSD), Tech. Rep.

Basler, J. F., Dile, J. M., Garimella, N., Hochberg, A. H., Richter, U., Vargas, J. E., & Yakushev, M. L. (2013). U.S. Patent No. 8,561,024. Washington, DC: U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

Harris, M., Hevner, A. R., & Collins, R. W. (2006, January). Control inflexible software development. In Proceedings of the 39th Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences (HICSS’06) (Vol. 9, pp. 216a-216a). IEEE.

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