Security-by-design and-default guidelines outlined by governments, including US, UK

Security-by-design and-default guidelines outlined by governments, including US, UK

The cybersecurity authorities of Australia, United Kingdom, Canada, Germany, Netherlands and New Zealand, including CISA and the FBI, have jointly published “Shifting the Balance of Cybersecurity Risk: Principles and Approaches for Security-by-Design and -Default”. The report outlines steps technology providers can take to increase the safety of products used worldwide.

The guide comes in response to growing concerns about digital threats faced by global citizens. As the National Cyber Security Centre Netherlands director Hans de Vries says, “In a world rapidly digitalizing, citizens should be protected from digital threats.”

This joint guidance encourages software manufacturers to create secure-by-design and -default products by revamping design and development programs. It urges them to take urgent steps towards this goal to ensure that technology and associated products are safe for customers.

Rob Pope, the director of the Computer Emergency Response Team New Zealand, also shares his thoughts on the importance of security-by-design and security-by-default, saying, “By creating secure products, both by design and by default, manufacturers can take much of the burden from end users.”

This guidance outlines core principles for software manufacturers to follow when designing and shipping their products, including taking ownership of security outcomes, embracing transparency and accountability and building the proper organizational structure.

The guide was created in partnership with many private sector organizations that provided invaluable contributions to advancing secure-by-design and security-by-default. The guide’s authors hope it will promote an international conversation about investments and decisions necessary to achieve a secure and resilient future.

Overall, it seeks to help organizations understand their responsibility for the security of end users. As Lisa Fong, the deputy director-general of the National Cyber Security Centre New Zealand (NCSC-NZ), notes, “Customers should have confidence that technology products are designed with information security as a key factor from the outset.”

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