Ensuring your software is safeguarded against potential security vulnerabilities and threats is essential in the development process. One of the most beneficial, secure software development practices is to use static application security testing (SAST) and SAST tools.
What You Need to Know About SAST
SAST is a type of software test used for inspecting and analyzing code to identify security vulnerabilities. Software security tools — such as static code analyzers — scan your code as it’s being written to identify potential weaknesses, errors and bugs. These kinds of tools are invaluable to software developers, as they are able to detect the most prevalent and common software security vulnerabilities. However, SAST tools are just one part of a well-rounded software security toolkit. You will also need:
• A dynamic analysis security testing (DAST) tool
• A fuzzing tool
• A database security scanner
• A mobile application security testing tool
• A software composition analysis tool
• A network vulnerability scanning tool
How SAST Works
In the simplest terms, SAST works by having a static code analyzer check your code for design and coding flaws that could make your software vulnerable. During this inspection, the static code analyzer will identify security issues, including programming errors, unsensitized input processing and vulnerable constructs.
Problems SAST Solves
In general, SAST has been designed to solve three main software development problems:
- Detecting source-code vulnerabilities. The most significant benefit of using a SAST tool is identifying software security issues early on in development when they are easier (and less costly) to fix.
- Eliminating late diagnostics. A common cause of massive technical debt is late diagnoses of problems in the source code. However, by using a SAST tool, you are able to easily diagnose the vulnerabilities and errors in your code.
- Enhancing root-cause analysis. With a SAST tool, you receive notifications that pinpoint the exact location of vulnerabilities and errors in your code.
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