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Level Up Your Cybersecurity: Discover the Assurance Maturity Model

By Tom Seest

Is Your Cybersecurity Software Ready? Explore the Assurance Maturity Model

At BestCybersecurityNews, we help entrepreneurs, solopreneurs, young learners, and seniors learn more about cybersecurity.

The Software Assurance Maturity Model (SAMM) is an open-source security maturity framework designed to assist software development teams in understanding their security processes. It consists of five business functions and 15 security practices that can be utilized to assess, formulate and implement strategies for improved protection.
This model is technology, process, and organization independent. It can be utilized to assess and enhance security posture across an array of technology systems.

Is Your Cybersecurity Software Ready? Explore the Assurance Maturity Model

Is Your Cybersecurity Software Ready? Explore the Assurance Maturity Model

Is Your Cybersecurity Strategy Up to Par? Discover the BSIMM Model

The Software Assurance Maturity Model (BSIMM) is a maturity model created by volunteers within the software security industry. It serves as a descriptive tool to assist organizations in determining where they stand on their journey toward security assurance and what activities should be undertaken to reach higher levels of proficiency.
It is an invaluable tool for benchmarking software security initiatives and allows users to compare how well they are doing in this area. The framework has been designed with flexibility in mind, so small, medium and large organizations can customize it according to their own requirements.
BSIMM is an open-source project designed to be used both internally by organizations assessing their security posture, and by third-party consulting firms providing reports showing where you stand on your software security assurance journey. As an OWASP flagship project, it strives to be community driven, measurable, actionable and versatile.
The BSIMM model consists of 4 domains and 12 practices, each with their own set of activities that support and build upon one another. These may include pen testing, patch management, monitoring tools and threat modeling.
This model stands out in that it encourages growth and improvement toward ever-better security – unlike many other security assessment methods which may cause much frustration.
The BSIMM model encourages engineers to participate in software securITy initiatives rather than rely solely on traditional IT security professionals. This is especially pertinent with the rise of DevOps and continuous integration/continuous delivery automation (CI/CD).
Another key feature of BSIMM is its emphasis on education. This is essential for creating a software security program that functions efficiently.
Due to the rapid pace of cybersecurity, it’s essential for developers to stay abreast of new skills and best practices. BSIMM recommends sending developers on annual refresher courses in order to guarantee they remain informed on current trends and techniques in software security.
In addition to education, BSIMM also recommends that organizations provide staff with resources for secure development and deployment. This is an integral part of achieving a robust security program since it equips people with the knowledge and tools they need to do their jobs well.

Is Your Cybersecurity Strategy Up to Par? Discover the BSIMM Model

Is Your Cybersecurity Strategy Up to Par? Discover the BSIMM Model

Is Your Company Ready for SAMM?

The Software Assurance Maturity Model (SAMM) is a security software maturity framework developed and maintained by OWASP that assists organizations in assessing, formulating, and executing a strategy for software security.
OWASP developed the SAMM to assist organizations of all sizes assess, comprehend and enhance their software security posture. It covers the full software lifecycle while being technology- and process-independent.
To start, the model identifies five essential business functions and fifteen security practices that support each. These include governance, development, design, test and deployment; while security practices include threat modeling, policy & compliance, training & awareness as well as organization & culture.
SAMM defines three levels of maturity for each business function. Each level has more intricate objectives with specific activities and stringent success metrics than its predecessor, thus leading to increasingly challenging success metrics over time.
There are two streams that coordinate and link the activities within each security practice across different maturity levels. The first relates specifically to an activity, while the second seeks to improve upon that same activity overall.
The initial stream includes security awareness training for all personnel involved in the software lifecycle, such as developers and architects. Subsequent streams offer technology- and role-specific guidance tailored to each language and platform.
Finally, the third stream includes a secure software center of excellence that fosters thought leadership among all development teams. This includes an experienced team of software security professionals who offer technology and security training throughout the development cycle.
In conclusion, the model provides a set of tools to facilitate the creation and deployment of secure software that adheres to industry best practices. Utilizing this framework is more reliable than trying to figure it out on your own.
SAMM differs from BSIMM in that it’s an empirically-based, prescriptive framework designed for use with your current software development lifecycle. This means you can begin by conducting an assessment to gain a baseline and build upon it from there.

Is Your Company Ready for SAMM?

Is Your Company Ready for SAMM?

Are You Maximizing Your Cybersecurity with Bsimm and Samm?

A maturity model is an assessment tool that assists organizations in understanding their current capability and effectiveness in practices. In cybersecurity, this means evaluating your software security posture to identify where you stand and what needs to be done to improve.
Two popular cybersecurity maturity models are BSIMM and SAMM (see below for an overview). Both models draw data from real-world software security initiatives across various organizations.
Both models provide an assessment of an organization’s security capability and maturity, as well as their capacity for implementing best practices. They both serve as useful instruments for recognizing weaknesses and initiating improvement initiatives.
BSIMM is an established and tested model that gives organizations the power to assess their software security programs against over 100 organizations across various industry verticals. Through data-driven insights, organizations are able to make more informed decisions regarding resources, time, budget and priorities when striving to enhance their security postures.
Although BSIMM is an effective tool for assessing your software security program, it may not be suitable for all organizations. As it’s licensed through Synopsys and its list of participating organizations consists mainly of large enterprises with over 800 developers, it could prove challenging for smaller businesses (SMEs) to fully take advantage of using this model as an assessment tool.
However, BSIMM assessment can be an invaluable asset for companies in formulating their strategy and communicating software security objectives to other parties. A BSIMM assessment also offers a roadmap for the organization’s journey toward security maturity, along with an in-depth comprehension of the activities necessary to reach those objectives.
OWASP SAMM is an open source project that has been around since 2009. Recently, the OWASP team updated the maturity model by converting its content into YAML files for greater automation and seamless integration with other tools and applications.
Each security practice is defined by three maturity levels, with increasingly complex objectives and stringent success metrics. While each level can be improved independently, related activities often lead to improvements across other areas as well.

Are You Maximizing Your Cybersecurity with Bsimm and Samm?

Are You Maximizing Your Cybersecurity with Bsimm and Samm?

Is Your Cybersecurity Strategy Ready for VSSAMM?

Virtual Storage Access Method (VSAM) is an access method commonly used with MVS, ZOS and OS/390 operating systems to accelerate data retrieval by searching a set of indexed records instead of individual files. The AMS utility program IDCAMS can be utilized to manipulate (“delete and define”) VSAM data sets, while custom programs can access them via Data Definition (DD) statements in JCL or dynamic allocation regions such as the Customer Information Control System (CICS).
There are various VSAM datasets, such as Entry Sequenced Data Sets (ESDS), Key Sequenced Data Sets (KSDS), Relative Record Data Sets (RRDS), and Linear Data Sets (LDS). All these vSSAMM datasets have been organized into clusters of VSAM components, including the DS index component and data component for each type of dataset.
Each VSAM dataset has its own catalog that details the contents of both data components and associated index components. This catalog can be viewed and accessed using listcat, print, or restore commands.
For ESDS records, each record has a Relative Byte Address (RBA), which allows programs to refer to it by its RBA number or key field. Conversely, KSDS records have keys that correspond with their corresponding key fields.
All VSAM data sets contain records organized into groups known as CIs (Control Intervals). These CIs determine the size of each record within a dataset compared to non-VSAM datasets.
CICS are stored in fixed length control intervals and organized into larger control areas that have fixed sizes. Usually, the size of these control areas is hidden from view by the user.
A VSAM data set can be loaded into a cluster using the IDCAMS – Define Cluster command. To do so, specifying an index parameter and providing DS names for related components and index components are all required.
The VERIFY command can be used to ensure the catalog accurately reflects the end of a VSAM data set. This command is especially helpful in cases when an error has caused incorrect closing of the catalog, or when data has been lost due to system malfunction.

Is Your Cybersecurity Strategy Ready for VSSAMM?

Is Your Cybersecurity Strategy Ready for VSSAMM?

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