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2/3/2010
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Black Hat: Microsoft Enhances SDL Offerings

The world's largest software company aims to help third-party developers write code that's more secure.

At the Black Hat security conference in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday, Microsoft introduced new software, a new membership program, and guidance to enhance its Secure Development Lifecycle (SDL) development methodology.

The software is the first public beta of MSF for Agile Software Development plus SDL Process Template for VSTS 2008, MSF-A+SDL for short, a template that helps development teams integrate SDL processes into their Visual Studio Team System development environment.

It is based on Microsoft's SDL-Agile processes, which aim to provide structure for development projects that happen on a more accelerated time line than the typical SDL project.

A version of the template for Visual Studio 2010 will be available shortly after Visual Studio 2010 is released in April.

Microsoft is also expanding its SDL Pro Network to include a new membership category called Tools. Organizations that join as Tools members provide services related to the deployment of security tools, like static analyzers, fuzzers, or binary analyzers.

The company announced seven new SDL Pro Network members: Fortify, Veracode, and Codenomicon in the Tools category; Booz-Allen Hamilton, Casaba Security, and Consult2Comply in the Consulting Member category; and Safelight Security Advisors in the Training Member category.

Finally, Microsoft released a white paper titled Simplified Implementation of the Microsoft SDL. In so doing, it hopes to convey that organizations don't have to be as large as Microsoft, and don't have to be using Microsoft development tools, to benefit from the company's secure development practices.

Microsoft's interest in helping third-party developers improve their code reflects the company's finding that during the first six months of 2009, 81% of reported vulnerabilities were in non-browser applications, 5% were in Microsoft products, and the remaining flaws were in Web browsers.

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