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Why Your Code Signing Policies Are Being Ignored

Why Your Code Signing Policies Are Being Ignored

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July 25, 2022 | Alexa Hernandez

Very few organizations have defined policies in place for code signing machine identities. Even those organizations that have policies in place to secure code signing processes find it virtually impossible to consistently enforce the security of code signing private keys. Here are some of the major reasons code signing policies are too often cast side:

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Lack of governance and control over signing

InfoSec teams are charged with securing the company’s information and data, including code signing credentials. They must be able to show that they are effectively achieving this end goal via a secure code signing process across the entire enterprise.

The best ways to ensure and demonstrate compliance is by

  • Having an irrefutable record of all code signing operations
  • Knowing where all private keys are stored
  • Knowing that policies are always enforced
Lack of understanding of best practices

While code signing involves critical security assets, such as private keys and certificates, code signing best practices are often not applied to securing these assets because they’re misunderstood. One reason for this is that code signing is frequently performed and managed by developers, not InfoSec teams. Therefore, even though InfoSec teams are responsible for corporate information security, they may not have control over or visibility into code signing processes.

Lack of InfoSec visibility into code signing activities

Can you locate all your organization’s code signing certificates? Does your company have a complete inventory of all code signing certificates that are being used across the entire enterprise — no matter where they’re stored or which certificate authority they came from? If you found malware on the internet signed by your company’s code signing certificate, where would you start looking for the source of the breach?

The more certificates in use, the more organizations find it difficult to obtain the complete visibility needed to track and manage them. When too many certificates are untracked or unmanaged, InfoSec teams are at a disadvantage against threat actors who seek to steal legitimate code signing keys. Not having this information means that discovering — let alone remediating — a breach that resulted from a seemingly legitimate code signing certificate is difficult, if not impossible.

How to ensure code signing compliance

The best way to ensure your code signing policies are embraced by your entire organization is by simplifying your processes into a single platform like Venafi CodeSign Protect.  Code signing credentials are a major target for threat actors, and the only way to keep your organization safe is with the full-proof machine identity protection Venafi offers.

This platform automates your code signing policies to guarantee compliance. From issuance to revocation, the entire certificate lifecycle is determined and enforced across all development teams. Plus, you will have a master list of all the code signing certificates that live on your network and all software signed. This enterprise-wide visibility is the piece of the puzzle your security team has been missing all along. Ready to get started? Learn more about CodeSign Protect today!

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About the author

Alexa Hernandez
Alexa Hernandez

Alexa is the Web Marketing Specialist at Venafi.

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