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Visualising a Software Security Initiative

Posted by Craig H on 10 April 2013

Last month I was pleased to attend the BSIMM Europe Open Forum. BSIMM is a model for assessing software security activities within an organisation; I have been following it since its first release in 2009, and over the last several months I’ve been able to use it in earnest at Visa Europe.

For me, the most interesting discussion at the forum was on presenting BSIMM assessment results in a visually compelling way. The BSIMM document uses spider charts, which hide potentially valuable information about activities at lower maturity levels. Sammy Migues presented a format he uses at Cigital, called “equalizer diagrams”, which reveal that information but lack the comparison with a benchmark.

I decided to ask Louise (the other half of Franklin Heath) about this, as data visualisation is one of her principal skills. We’ve come up with something I like to call a “DIP switch diagram”, which I will explain in this post. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Software Security, Visualisations | 1 Comment »