Integrating Live Patching in SecDevOps Workflows

  • SecDevOps is, just like DevOps, a transformational change that organizations undergo at some point during their lifetime. Just like many other big changes, SecDevOps is commonly adopted after a reality check of some kind: a big damaging cybersecurity incident, for example.

    A major security breach or, say, consistent problems in achieving development goals signals to organizations that the existing development framework doesn’t work and that something new is needed. But what exactly is SecDevOps, why should you embrace it – and how can you do it more easily in practice?

    The fundamentals of SecDevOps

    By itself, SecDevOps is not just one single improvement. You may see it as a new tool, or set of tools, or perhaps a different mindset. Some might see SecDevOps as a culture. In reality, it’s all of those factors wrapped into a new approach to development that’s intended to put security first.

    SecDevOps rely on highly reproducible scenarios, touching on topics such as system provisioning and deployment, code management, and building pipelines. However, most importantly, SecDevOps addresses cybersecurity posture. Everyone in the organization must reflect a security-first approach where, at every level, security issues are foreseen, identified, and corrected. In essence, putting the Sec in front of DevOps means shifting security to the front of the development framework. Security is not an afterthought; it is the first thing that teams think about when developing an application, and security policies are defined right at the start of the project.

    Theory, yes… but you need tools to execute

    Giving security such a prime position in the development workflow matters because of the usual cybersecurity factors. Building security into the DevOps workflow contributes to improved vulnerability management, including better patch management through live patching, both of which are critical aspects of overall cybersecurity posture.

    A great idea, viewpoint, or approach will only get you so far, however. You also need tools that can help you implement these ideas in practice. Which tools you need depends on your unique development requirements – but there are a few common needs.

    Consistent patch management is one of those common needs, and to help organizations better adjust their processes and indeed to help them get started with SecDevOps, TuxCare’s ePortal offering has a script-friendly API endpoint that helps organizations include TuxCare’s KernelCare live patching into their workloads more easily.

    The API simplifies the integration of KernelCare live patching deployment and configuration at an earlier development stage. In providing this tool, we illustrate how automation in the SecDevOps paradigm not only simplifies operations but also ensures the availability of key tools as soon as systems are provisioned – while also making it easy to remove the tools as systems are decommissioned – enabling a reproducible, security-first mindset to permeate a system’s lifetime from deployment to teardown..

    Pick the right tools to attain SecDevOps now

    SecDevOps translates into a more secure environment over the entire lifecycle of a system – but every organization needs practical tools that help make SecDevOps a reality. While SecDevOps as a concept can drive the development practices that underpin security in your organization, implementation success often lies in the tools used.

    TuxCare’s range of tools provides an easy-to-follow recipe with examples for Chef, Ansible, and Puppet. Whichever DevOps tools your organization uses, it can make use of the TuxCare ePortal API. And if you’re using something else entirely, our code samples will still guide you in the right direction.

    At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter what toolset you use. It’s critical that your organization embraces SecDevOps – and deploys a comprehensive toolset that automatically ingrains SecDevOps principles into everyday development practices.

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