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6 Tips for Software Developers to Enhance Software Security

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Avoid Making Common Security Mistakes That Make Your Software Vulnerable to Attack

As a developer, you’re certainly aware of the importance of following security best practices. But many times, we miss certain things, maybe because it hasn’t become second nature to us yet. Unfortunately, we realize only after a security issue has arisen, and it’s marked on our brains like a spot of indelible ink.

Many instances of poor security practices come to the surface when it’s too late. Many mistakes are made even by large organizations and experienced developers. Here, we’d like to cover some common steps which will prove helpful in enhancing your software security. 

1. Instead of Using Encryption, Hash the Passwords

Sometimes developers use encryption to store passwords. Due to this, there’s always a chance of someone finding the decryption algorithm or key. To avoid this, use hashing, as it doesn’t have a direct reverse. This means no one can reverse it unless they already have a mapped table from plain text to hash.

2. Avoid Adding Secret Backdoors in Software

Whether you have a genuine reason or not, don’t add backdoors to access software. It’s best to avoid putting backdoor access into the system. Because sooner or later someone else may find it. Exploiting backdoors is a common tactic used by cyber attackers. Adding backdoors can damage the reputation of your organization and portray you as a bad guy who’s enabling stealing personal data of users, adding malware, or hijacking devices.

3. Make Sure to Require User Authentication on Every Page

Sometimes it’s easy to accidentally skip essential steps for software security. One common issue is not requiring authentication on every page. For instance, a copied URL with confidential information (such as a confirmation page) can be opened into another browser without providing login details. This shouldn’t be the case—be sure to ask for login details instead of showing the page directly.

4. Have a Plan For Security Patching

As a software developer, it’s your responsibility to keep your software updated and free from any vulnerabilities by providing regular updates and patches for your software. Be sure that critical security issues are patched quickly before attackers can take advantage.

Often security loopholes in the software are found through testing. That’s why it’s important to follow proper testing practices before publishing any software—no matter whether it’s a simple or a complex application. More testing (such as checking the performance on different platforms, testing any input conditions, etc.) will help you in providing software security before problems occur.

6. Use a Code Signing Certificate

Even if your software is well developed and published, its reputation is what decides whether it will become successful or not. To increase the reputation, sign your software using a Code Signing Certificate from a trusted Certificate Authority. This will help you in many ways:

* avoid security warning signs for unsigned software

* demonstrate the trustworthiness of your software

* prove the integrity of the software

* boost the confidence of your users