Compliance Security Champions

Think CEOs Are Not Liable for Cyber Risk….Think Again


The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) recently released its new Secure Software Development Attestation Form. The announcement indicates an ongoing trend placing the cybersecurity onus on software vendors and their organization’s leadership, specifically their CEOs. This mandate is much more than a compliance checkbox. It’s a call to CEOs to foster a security culture within their organization that ensures the development and deployment of software constructed to withstand the hyperactive threat landscape.

New Requirements

Introduced by CISA, the form requires the signature of the CEO or their designee to certify compliance with secure development practices for software developed after September 14, 2022, or for SaaS products. This includes ensuring software is developed in secure environments, maintaining trusted code supply chains, ensuring component provenance, and employing tools for vulnerability detection. This attestation is a commitment to security, reinforcing trust in software products supplied to the federal government and beyond.


What Does This Mean for CEOs

But why should CEOs, typically distanced from the granularities of software development, concern themselves with these details? The answer lies in the trust and reliability that these practices weave around a company’s offerings. In an era where software vulnerabilities can jeopardize not just individual companies but entire supply chains and national security, ensuring software integrity becomes synonymous with preserving corporate reputation and customer trust.

Moreover, this framework doesn’t merely serve to protect; it positions companies at the vanguard of their industries. By aligning with these requirements, CEOs signal to clients, partners, and regulators their commitment to security, potentially unlocking new avenues of growth, collaboration and accountability.


A Shifting Paradigm 

The CEO’s role in this paradigm extends beyond oversight. It demands active engagement with their teams to foster an environment where security is not an afterthought but a foundational element of software development. This involves understanding and championing the practices laid out by CISA, from ensuring secure development environments to maintaining stringent controls over software components and their provenance.

As daunting as it may seem, this shift presents an opportunity for leaders to redefine their legacy in the l domain. By steering their companies towards these secure harbors, CEOs safeguard their operations and contribute to a more resilient and trustworthy software supply chain.

The Secure Software Development Attestation Form is not just a regulatory hurdle. It’s a blueprint for building a future where security and innovation go hand in hand under the stewardship of visionary leaders who recognize the value of trust in the digital age. CEOs, now is the time to lead by example, embedding security into the DNA of your software development processes to benefit all stakeholders involved.

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