You've hit one of the greatest barriers to application security success: Ignorance. Even with all the government and industry regulations mandating reasonable security controls many managers continue to ignore the issue. You're on the right track because the people running your business are the only ones that can truly fix this issue long term.
What you have to do is show them how the general risks and specific vulnerabilities impact the business. Get on their side. Go to business meetings and put things in terms of them and the business. Beyond that, show how improvements in your code are being made and how periodic security assessments are paying off. Perhaps most importantly -- never stop. Application security is an ongoing thing that'll never go away. Don't feed them fear but rather persistent education regarding what they're up against. They'll eventually come around.
More team and relationship building tips:
- Tips for software testers: Getting along with developers
End software project slowdowns caused by fighting between software testers and developers with these four tips. Learn how to report application bugs diplomatically and accurately with veteran tester David Christiansen's guidelines.
- How to get management on board with Web 2.0 security issues
Ways to get management buy-in for Web 2.0 security testing and quality assurance and to bolster application security before deployment are given in this tip.
- The QA team's role in application performance evaluation and management
Who is responsible for defining requirements, setting quality and managing the QA team? QA expert describes how requirements are set, along with who ensures quality.
This was first published in April 2010