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3 reasons RASP is right for DevOps

Mike Milner Co-founder and CTO, IMMUNIO
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Cloud computing is creating a new normal when it comes to application development, with web apps getting written and launched quicker than ever before. With that, of course, comes the huge challenge of keeping those applications secure, and as hackers become more advanced, DevOps teams are scrambling to keep up. Not helping the situation is that most DevOps team members are not security experts, and are focused on getting applications out fast and efficiently versus keeping them safe.

As applications are expected to be rolled out at faster and faster paces, these teams don't have time for the slow security processes of the past. This means that for processes to work, they must mesh with continuous integration and continuous deployment approaches, while offering automated capabilities and better integration with developer tools.

This is where Runtime Application Self-Protection (RASP) tools come in. Embedded within the application and constantly scanning for threats, RASP is capable of taking on the many time-consuming security tasks that developers are responsible for handling. RASP can plug in where DevOps teams have gaps and ultimately help make an application more secure.


1. RASP integrates with DevOps to streamline development

Developers have traditionally benefited from long lead times when working on web applications. While this gave them ample time to build, test and fix bugs, it also tended to create more work in the long run—developers often created and coded an entire application before testing and fixing all bugs at once, a process that could take weeks. With the move to agile, these steps are happening all at once.

Because of this, switching to RASP makes sense, as it streamlines the security process in the same way that agile has streamlined development—as applications constantly release and re-release versions of themselves as updates are made, RASP detects any bugs or vulnerabilities and resolves the issue in real-time, ensuring that all version of the application are secure. 

2. RASP reduces the time developers need for security measures

Despite being one of the most common forms of cyber protection, with the evolving threat of hacks against applications, Web Application Firewalls (WAFs) alone are no longer an effective way to protect against threats. Firewalls only secure the perimeter of an application and require developers to manually comb through lines and lines of code to locate a vulnerability when one arises, before having to then manually fix the issue. Additionally, firewalls can be cumbersome to install, update and configure, requiring developers to have to take applications offline whenever an update or reconfiguration needs to be made.

With RASP, vulnerabilities are automatically identified, pinpointed and patched, with no intervention necessary on the developer side, freeing them up to focus more on coding and developing a better application. RASP programs are also incredibly easy to install and update, generally taking around two minutes to be ready to go live and be fully configured.

3. RASP allows developers to focus on the stuff they're good at: developing

With RASP, developers have the ability to ensure applications are protected without being sucked into hours of finding and fixing vulnerabilities by hand. Instead, they can focus on developing and coding the best product they can and not sacrificing speed.

With the ability to implement a process that can keep a constant eye on potential threat and shut down hacks before they do damage, developers are able to focus on delivering the highest quality product and designing new features to entice users, which is critical to an applications ultimate success.

Have you or your team worked with RASP? Share your experiences in the comments section.


Image credit: Flickr

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