Cyber security is critical in every business–large corporations, small businesses, and especially for a software company. In today’s digital era, where businesses strive to gain an online presence and increase brand awareness, innovation like the usage of applications and other technological advancements have become the strategies to compete in the market. Along with these technologies come cyber security threats and challenges that must be addressed to secure data and prevent hacking and fraud.
Statistics show that the highest cost of data breaches amounted to an average of $11 million dollars in the healthcare industry, $5.9 M in the financial sector, and $2.6 M in the public sector from March 2022 to March 2023.
In this article, we will explore how software development, including software companies in London, meets cyber security challenges and discuss strategies and best practices to ensure a secure digital landscape.
3 Common Types of Cyber Security Threats
Cyber security threats are vulnerabilities that expose the company’s systems to data breaches, unauthorized access to secret information, and the like. These cyber security attacks are continuously evolving as attackers devise new ways to gather data.
Here are the four common types of cyber security threats that should be taken seriously: malware, phishing, and denial of service (DoS):
Malware, or malicious software, refers to any software that infects and interrupts computers. Cyber attackers use malware to target websites. It works in a way that it steals personal information, data, and account details in order to steal money and restrict the system owner from using the device and accessing data.
Usually, the victim of malware gets misled by being redirected to a webpage or another website, persuading the user to provide personal information. Malware is widespread, that’s why it should be addressed by having tools like antivirus, algorithms, and firewalls.
This act is when the cyber attacker sends an email claiming that it is from a reputable company, government, bank, or other reliable source, and then it asks for the victim’s personal information.
Upon obtaining the victim’s personal data, the cybercriminal uses it for personal gain. For example, the email asks for your security pin or bank account number and then uses your card for personal purchases.
- Denial of Service
Denial of Service (DoS) is a type of cyber attack that disrupts the system and prevents users from accessing the services by different means. e.g., the cause for service unavailable for some applications that customers want to access. it works in a way that the cyber criminal floods requests from web authorities to get a target website down. When these requests flood an e-commerce store, for example, the massive traffic will disable the customers from making a purchase. This will lead to hours of service unavailability and will lead to a huge amount of profit due to loss of customers and loss of income.
Best Practices in Secure Software Development
To effectively meet cyber security challenges, a software company should follow best practices in secure software development. These best practices include the following:
- Compliance with the Coding Standards
A software company that complies with coding standards like GDPR, ISO 27001, and HIPAA leads to impressive results like the creation of a valuable product or digital asset with data protection standards. Coding standards help in minimizing common coding errors and weaknesses. Best practices like output encoding and secure input validation are crucial to prevent cyber injection attacks.
- Hiring a Reputable Software Company
Professional developers are fully equipped with the knowledge and skills in secure coding guidelines, and they should also be well-versed with the relevant coding standards that outline specific coding practices and principles to ensure security. These guidelines provide a roadmap for writing a secure code. It is worth it to invest in a reputable software company as they have specialists who can help you maintain your website and protect your digital assets from security threats.
- Regular Software Testing and Product Development Review
For consistent quality assurance, a business should employ a software development company that conducts security and penetration testing regularly. Prior to product deployment and system implementation, routine code reviews and security testing are critical to detect vulnerabilities before they are launched. A reliable software developer uses tools like static code analyzers, dynamic application security testing (DAST) tools, and other testing methods in order to check the quality of the software.
- Implementing Threat Modeling at the Initial Stage
A good software development company addresses security and implements threat modeling at an early stage. Being able to identify potential risks at an early stage of software development can prevent security risks and further costs.
The advancement of modern technology and the emergence of software applications for businesses are inevitable, and business owners, including project managers, should be aware of the challenges it poses to cyber security.
Malware, phishing, and denial of service are some of the common types of cyber attacks that should be addressed and prevented. Following best practices in secure software development like compliance with coding standards, hiring a reputable software company, regular software testing and product review, and implementing security and threat modeling at the initial stage are the steps to mitigate these cyber security risks.