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Mitigating the Risk of Software Vulnerabilities by Adopting a Secure Software Development Framework (SSDF)



Donna F. Dodson, Murugiah Souppaya, Karen Scarfone


Few software development life cycle (SDLC) models explicitly address software security in detail, so secure software development practices usually need to be added to each SDLC model to ensure the software being developed is well secured. This white paper recommends a core set of high-level secure software development practices called a secure software development framework (SSDF) to be integrated within each SDLC implementation. The paper facilitates communications about secure software development practices among business owners, software developers, project managers and leads, and cybersecurity professionals within an organization. Following these practices should help software producers reduce the number of vulnerabilities in released software, mitigate the potential impact of the exploitation of undetected or unaddressed vulnerabilities, and address the root causes of vulnerabilities to prevent future recurrences. Also, because the framework provides a common vocabulary for secure software development, software consumers can use it to foster communications with suppliers in acquisition processes and other management activities.
OTHER - CSWP 04232020
Report Number
CSWP 04232020


secure software development, secure software development framework (SSDF), secure software development practices, software acquisition, software development, software development life cycle (SDLC), software security.


Dodson, D. , Souppaya, M. and Scarfone, K. (2020), Mitigating the Risk of Software Vulnerabilities by Adopting a Secure Software Development Framework (SSDF), OTHER, National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, MD, [online],, (Accessed June 22, 2024)


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Created April 22, 2020, Updated October 12, 2021