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Study: Less Than 50% Of Third-Party Code Is Tested For Quality and Security

Coverity has announced the results of the "Software Integrity Risk Report," a commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of the company to examine developer trends in software code quality.

The software integrity research surveyed 336 software development influencers in North America and Europe on current practices and market trends for managing software quality, security, and safety.

According to the study, the majority of companies source software code from multiple third parties, and this code is not tested for quality, safety, and security with the same rigor as in-house developed software. The study also reveals a skewed risk-to-responsibility culture forming in development and highlights the impact software defects have on business.

The study uncovered the significant adoption of third-party code and the impact of that code on business priorities. Highlights include:

  • More than 90 percent of respondents confirmed they use third-party supplied cod from commercial vendors, outsourced teams, or open source providers

  • More than 40 percent of respondents cited that problems from third-party code resulting in product delays or recalls, security vulnerabilities, increase in development time, and revenue impact have caused them to seek greater visibility into code integrity

  • Roughly 65 percent of companies say that customer satisfaction is impacted by software defects, while 47 percent believe time-to-market is also impacted by software defects

  • Only 44 percent of companies conduct automated code testing during development for third-party code, compared to 69 percent that use automated code testing for internally developed software

  • Only 35 percent of companies conduct risk, security, or vulnerabilities assessments for third-party code, compared to 70 percent of companies deploying these methods on their internally developed software

  • Only 35 percent of companies apply manual code review to third-party supplied software, compared to 68 percent that perform manual code review on internally developed code

"The Software Integrity Risk Report data is very telling of the drivers for change in software code accountability," said Dave Peterson, chief marketing officer at Coverity. "Today's development teams are in a real pinch. Developers are 100 percent accountable for the outcome of their software, yet cannot control the software supplied by third parties. This has lead to strong demand from customers seeking control and governance over the entire software supply chain."

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