Writing Rugged Code

Sue Marquette Poremba

Programming mistakes can lead to vulnerabilities, like the recent problems with Flash.

 

According to Tim Greene's Network World article, that's why three security professionals -- Josh Corman, an analyst with The 451 Group; David Rice, formerly with the National Security Agency and author of Geekonomics; and Jeff Williams, the chairman of OWASP -- developed the Rugged Manifesto. According to Greene:

 

The three are trying to motivate developers to aspire to rugged ideals and to learn how their code can be more secure. It's a philosophy or value set accompanied by business cases showing why it makes economic sense to write rugged software rather than dealing later with the consequences of vulnerable software.

The Rugged Manifesto recognizes the concept that if code can be written to fix vulnerabilities, why not write a better, more rugged, more agile, more secure code to begin with. It makes sense, doesn't it? Greene pointed out that:

 

An early aspiration is to promote the Rugged Manifesto in colleges that teach programming, so that over time the percentage of practicing developers who believe in Rugged principles increases. Rugged wants to focus on people and process, not just technology.


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