OSB Alliance study on the use of open source software: What about security?

For this study commissioned by the OSB Alliance, Dr. Mark Ohm investigated how the security of open source and proprietary software can be evaluated and improved in perspective.

The development of information technology in the last decades is remarkable: The path begins with helpful support functions in computational and data-heavy processes and leads us to the dominant technology of the present and future, without which nothing works. In the process, attention is increasingly shifting from the devices we need to use this technology to the software we use to benefit from the devices and its risks.
Complex software systems that increasingly intervene in our society – that’s what we call digitalisation. Whether we are talking about industrial applications, social media or artificial intelligence, there is always software behind it. And this brings the security and trustworthiness of software systems, on which we are increasingly dependent, to the fore.

The role of security in software development

Well over 90% of all software contains open source – including proprietary products. The security of open source therefore concerns all software producers and users today. If we want security, we have to be able to check it. Software development is evolving, tools are integrating more and more protection mechanisms, and the ability to check for vulnerabilities is improving. At the same time, the number of vulnerabilities and attacks is also increasing.

New risks are emerging, and we have no choice but to face them. We have implemented many protective mechanisms for this at Greenbone, and integrated them into our certified security management. Also because, as a provider of security products, we deal with vulnerabilities more intensively than other companies, we have a special motivation and expertise in this area. We also know that not all risks can be discovered and eliminated during software development, but that software and systems must also be monitored and tested during operation. That is what we are here for with our products.

Our role in improving security

We want to make the IT world safer. We would like to contribute to this with our products, but also with the support of this study.

Please find the complete study here.