In the face of rising security threats, you need a security testing process that complements the efficiency and quality your Agile model is built upon. That sounds well and good, but how do you know when it’s time to invest the time and money in shifting to a new paradigm.
Here are four common signs your Agile team could benefit from automated security testing:
1. You still perform manual testing.
If you’ve got an army of development talent with the skills and bandwidth to shoulder your manual testing and QA requirements, you’re set. If you don’t, or if you’d prefer to reserve your available talent for more high-value tasks, you can probably stand to reduce the manhours your team spends running manual tests. Not to mention even your best, most experienced testers can make mistakes and expose your organization to high-risk, high-cost threats. At the end of the day, the question you have to answer is, “Can I afford to press on with manual security testing?”
2. Your sprints take too long.
Your Agile approach is driven by incremental development, short sprints, and rapid feedback cycles. No matter where they occur in your sprint, development hiccups or bottlenecks can elongate your sprints and shackle your team’s efficiency, which can result in missed deployment deadlines and scope creep. Security testing may not be what’s slowing down your sprints, but finding ways to automate repetitive tasks and free up your resources can go a long way in accelerating development.
3. Tasks are being repeated.
One of the drawbacks of traditional testing methods is they often force your team to repeat time-consuming tasks and activities. For instance, if your tester runs a certain test on one operating system, he will likely have to run the same test on many others. And that’s just one test! When he’s done, he’ll have to move on to another test to weed out different kinds of bugs and glitches.
Automation eliminates this repetition. Instead of running the testing process manually, your testers can let automated tools handle test activities so they can focus 100% on only high-risk tests.
4. Bandwidth is stretched thin.
The result of performing time-intensive, repetitive test activities is that your teams have less time to devote to other aspects of development. This includes addressing new use cases or development tasks geared toward differentiating your product. You also lack the bandwidth to take on new projects altogether, which can push back time-to-market for new, mission-critical applications and weigh heavily on your budget.
Automated security testing can complement and even enhance your Agile approach. But the first step to aligning security testing to your Agile development process is identifying where your current approach is falling short.
Get more insight into automated security testing for your Agile environment — including common misconceptions that prevent adoption — by downloading our free white paper, 3 Reasons to Integrate Automated Security Testing into Agile Software Development.