The time has come to put control over IT security into the hands of the developers who increasingly are being held accountable for it. To make that possible, Signal Sciences has launched a Web Protection Platform (WPP) capable of inspecting traffic in real time across multiple deployment models.
Intended as a replacement for more traditional web applications firewalls (WAF), WPP redirects any suspicious traffic to a cloud analytics engine without adding any meaningful overhead in terms of overall latency, says Signal Sciences CEO Andrew Peterson.
What makes WPP unique, he notes, is that it can be deployed in three different modes. When deployed on a local server, no changes to the application code are required. WPP also can be deployed as a reverse proxy in from of a web server. But from a DevSecOps perspective, the most flexible options is to deploy WPP in a runtime application self protection (RASP) mode that allows developers to embed WPP directly into their source code. In the later instance, Peterson says developers can assume security responsibility for their own applications, in keeping with process employed by organizations that have implemented advanced DevOps processes.
Peterson says WPP not only provides protection against the top 10 most common web applications threats, but it also thwarts distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks, account takeover and even attacks employing malware embedded in custom business logic.
Regardless of the delivery model, Peterson says it’s become apparent that legacy WAF are not able to secure modern applications based on containers and microservices, Embedding WPP in application source code enables developers to embed a cybersecurity defense mechanism in each container-based microservice in a way that scales over time.
As part of its commitment to DevSecOps, Signal Sciences has created 16 pre-built integrations with a range of third-party DevOps tools and security technologies, including Atlassian JIRA software, Datadog, PagerDuty, Slack and Splunk. In addition, DevOps teams can take advantage of an application programming interface (API) that Signal Sciences has developed to integrate WPP with other applications.
Of course, the whole DevSecOps movement is only in its infancy. Most IT organizations are still struggling with the concept. It’s also not clear how much IT security professionals will be comfortable relinquishing control over application security to developers. However, Signal Sciences claims that 95 percent of its customers have implemented automated blocking, versus only 10 percent to 15 percent of IT organizations that have implemented a WAF.
Signal Sciences is betting that in much the same way they now exercise more influence over IT operation, developers will play a much larger role in IT security. In fact, as developers are held more accountable for application security, Peterson says many of them will demand to be able to programmatically implement IT security controls. Naturally, there’s no such thing as perfect security. But is the case of application security, DevSecOps may turn out to be our only hope.