Demystifying DevSecOps: A Strategic Guide for Aligning Security and Development Teams

For years, friction between security and development teams hindered organizations from keeping pace with business demands. Security groups lacking context threw last minute requirements over the fence or imposed delays with lengthy reviews and restrictions. Developers focused on speed felt hamstrung.

DevSecOps emerged as the practice of integrating security earlier into rapid development lifecycles. By embedding controls and testing into pipelines, issues can be prevented proactively rather than addressed reactively.

In this guide, we’ll demystify DevSecOps and provide actionable tips for security and development teams to adopt collaborative, high-velocity practices. United through shared objectives, both groups can propel business outcomes securely.

Make Security Champions Part of Development Teams

Rather than being an outside auditor, embed security engineer roles directly within feature teams. These security champions provide guidance during planning and design on how to integrate necessary controls upfront.

By being involved from the start, champions avoid surprises late in the process that cause rework. They also gain valuable insight into application context that informs appropriate protections.

Provide Developer Enablement Resources

Make training on secure coding best practices and threat modeling readily available to developers. Create internal certifications that guide developers through mastering techniques for their programming languages and frameworks.

Enable continuous learning through “lunch and learn” sessions on OWASP Top 10, credential hygiene, secrets management, and other secure development topics.

Automate Policy As Code Testing

Rather than manual reviews, use policy as code tools like Open Policy Agent to validate that infrastructure and application code adhere to security benchmarks. Tests execute against every build to shift left.

Build a library of policies aligned to organizational standards that immediately provide guardrails whenever new repos get created. Policy enforcement engrains secure habits.

Integrate Security Scanning into Pipelines

Embed static and dynamic analysis security testing tools at natural integration points in CI/CD pipelines. Fail builds that fail scans until issues remediated.

Over time, these verification gates influence developers to consider security proactively since they know checks are coming. Testing is validated code, not after-the-fact.

Instrument for Runtime Protection

To guard running applications, inject security capabilities like threat detection, identity management, and secrets protection using approaches like application security mesh (ESM).

Tools like Snyk and Orca Security simplify embedding runtime protections without changing underlying code. This shifts security left into production.

Unify Visibility Through Shared Data

Break down data siloes by aggregating security telemetry and application logs into shared data lakes. This enables correlated analysis spanning Dev and SecOps.

Unified data platforms like Datadog and Splunk provide holistic visibility that improves root cause diagnosis and collaboration on issues.

Foster Partnership Through Security Champions

Changing ingrained mindsets takes time and consistent positive experiences. Security champions embedded within teams act as the face of partnership, earning trust through enabling agile outcomes without compromising protection.

Gradually expand champions across all application teams. Consistent guidance and collaboration shifts cultures.

Measure Progress with Shared Metrics

Rather than only monitoring security KPIs like vulnerability counts, also track velocity metrics important to developers like release frequency, lead time, and deployment rates.

Shared scorecards align around delivering business value securely. Continuous improvement cements partnerships.

The DevSecOps journey requires bringing development, operations, and security together as partners through technology and process integration. Realigning teams around shared goals enables both security and speed. Work hand-in-hand with champions from DBGM Consulting who have walked the DevSecOps path before to guide your cultural transformation.