SAMM - Operational Enablement - 1

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Operational Enablement - 1

Objective: Enable communications between development teams and operators for critical security-relevant data

Results

  • Ad hoc improvements to software security posture through better understanding of correct operations
  • Operators and users aware of their role in ensuring secure deployment
  • Improved communications between software developers and users for security-critical information

Success Metrics

  • >50% of projects with updated deployment security information in past 6 months
  • >50% of projects with operational procedures for events updated in past 6 months

Costs

  • Ongoing project overhead from maintenance of deployment security information
  • Ongoing project overhead from maintenance of critical operating procedures

Personnel

  • Developers (1-2 days/yr)
  • Architects (1-2 days/yr)
  • Managers (1 days/yr)
  • Support/Operators (1 days/yr)

Related Levels

Activities

A. Capture critical security information for deployment

With software-specific knowledge, project teams should identify any security-relevant configuration and operations information and communicate it to users and operators. This enables the actual security posture of software at deployment sites to function in the same way that designers in the project team intended.

This analysis should begin with architects and developers building a list of security features built-in to the software. From that list, information about configuration options and their security impact should be captured as well. For projects that offer several different deployment models, information about the security ramifications of each should be noted to better inform users and operators about the impact of their choices.

Overall, the list should be lightweight and aim to capture the most critical information. Once initially created, it should be reviewed by the project team and business stakeholders for agreement. Additionally, it is effective to review this list with select operators or users in order to ensure the information is understandable and actionable. Project teams should review and update this information with every release, but must do so at least every 6 months.

B. Document procedures for typical application alerts

With specific knowledge of ways in which software behaves, project teams should identify the most important error and alert messages which require user/operator attention. From each identified event, information related to appropriate user/operator actions in response to the event should be captured.

From the potentially large set of events that the software might generate, select the highest priority set based on relevance in terms of the business purpose of the software. This should include any security-related events, but also may include critical errors and alerts related to software health and configuration status.

For each event, actionable advice should be captured to inform users and operators of required next steps and potential root causes of the event. These procedures must be reviewed by the project team and updated at every major product release, every 6 months, but can be done more frequently, e.g. with each release.






Additional Resources