What is a Source Code Review and its Process?

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What is a Source Code Review and its Process?

Defining a Source Code Review

In today’s world, application code vulnerabilities are basically moneymaking cyber security prey in the digital world.  Hence, what drives this susceptibility?  The scarcity of safety compliance in the early project expansion life cycle is the core reason for the safety crunch.  Here comes the role of the Source Code Review services benefit in preparing your applications.

Now, initially, let’s elaborate on the terminology in detail.  Basically, a Source Code Review is a manual or automated practice that explores an application’s code base to locate live current deficiencies and vulnerabilities.  Moreover, this process scans for logical errors and examines spec execution and style policies.

Further, we can now elaborate that the code review can be of 2 particular types – Manual and Automated Code Review.  The manual code review comprises a person doing the honors of examining the source code row after row to judge vulnerabilities while in the automated code review, there is a tool involved that reviews the application source code by utilizing a preset form of protocols.

History of Source Code Review

Right from the last time, the code review was intended to be a lengthy and time-taking procedure.  Shortly, the steep rise in applications was able to be seen in the digital world, and the growth cycle also evolved pretty fast.  Therefore, the review process became extra vibrant and lightweight, maintaining the rate with elegant procedures and contemporary development strategies.

As a result ahead, the code review tools came into the market in the place of a human tester, where they started doing the testing process that gets effortlessly blended into IDEs/SCM.  However, the preface of SAST tools supplied supplementary advantages to manual reviews, assisting developers in quick discovery and fixing vulnerabilities.  Ahead, these automated tools aid developers in multiple habitats, such as GitLab or GitHub, and IDEs, such as Eclipse and IntelliJ.

Source Code Review: Focus

At which place is a Source Code Review plan its pertinency?  There are about seven key regions or security parameters a Source Code Review focuses on.  Any particular application that fails to satisfy protection in these particular spots could be a pretty effortless target for malicious users.  In addition, a Source Code Review aids in recognizing voids for the development team, depicting the strength of applications in these individual regions. Hence, what are these particular areas or security mechanisms?

  1. Authorization
  2. Authentication
  3. Data validation
  4. Session management
  5. Error handling
  6. Logging
  7. Encryption

Moreover, you can seek numerous grounds affecting these security mechanisms.  In addition to this, many authentication issues can arise if there is the frail treatment of Passwords.  In case the message that possesses the crucial information has certain defects, then it also can affect the error handling procedures. Indeed, if there are some kinds of flaws in a common expression, it can duly affect data approval processes.

Are there some basic standards set for determining the shortcomings, mitigation, and prevention?  This process is called the Common Weakness Enumeration, which generally involves a list of vulnerabilities that a Source Code Review utilizes as a reference.  Moreover, this listing portrays a yardstick for software security tools aimed explicitly at security vulnerabilities.

Source Code Review: Process

As we have already mentioned that the code reviews could be of 2 sorts and those are Manual and Automated.  The existing top exercise of industries comprises utilizing the combo functionality of the Manual and Automated Reviews together.  Therefore, the best technique would be able to capture the most advanced threat vectors present in your application codebase.

The prominent question of the hour is a particular time when you need a Source Code Review.  To extract the best possible result so far, applications require a code review in the early phases of the software development lifecycle.  Moreover, it can undoubtedly assist developers in fast-fix living vulnerabilities in the codebase and support enhancing the application readiness in all possible methods.

Subsequently, let’s just understand the circumstances where a developer is writing the code where an automated review can assist the developer in incorporating quick alterations to the codebase parallelly.  Moreover, an automated review allows the developer to do a brief analysis of bigger codebases utilizing open source or commercial tools.  Furthermore, the avant-garde development team also employs SAST tools to patch exposure in real time.

On the contrary, a Manual Review is beneficial in the project’s commitment phase.  In addition, it assumes business logic and contains developer intentions.  To clarify, this process that involves the conscious analysis of the source code by a senior code review professional.  To sum up, we can say that this is time-taking though adequate, while looking to grab enterprise logic errors or issues.

Hence, what is an ideal Source Code Review Process?  To clarify, the amalgamation of both automated and manual approaches or Source Code Review.  The human operator that handles the manual review comprises the entire process is very crucial. If you add it up with the SAST tool enhancements, it can sincerely strengthen the entire security of the code.  Meanwhile, it certainly assists in minimizing the number of vulnerabilities or flaws flowing into the production cycle.

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What advantages does a Source Code Review have?

The Source Code Review is a very complex and important procedure performed by various security professionals to reveal all current live vulnerabilities within the enterprise application code.  In addition, the prominent benefits of performing a Source Code Review are as follows:

  • Minimizing the number of hazards coming in the final stages of the software development lifecycle.
  • Reducing the counting of security bugs present entering into the production.
  • Minimize the time invested by developers on repairing issues and thus improve efficiency.
  • Enhancing maintainability, continuity, and consistency across the codebase.
  • Increase ROI by making the process faster and more secure by utilizing some possible resources and time.
  • Enhancing developer productivity and learning that assist future code development.

Best practices and Lessons

Let’s just understand some of the Best Practices and Lessons exercised by some successful code review teams.

Learning the developer approach

Before initiating code review, the corresponding working team will intercommunicate with the developers’ team.  Here, they would attempt to learn the developer’s methodology for mechanisms like authentication, encryptions, and data validations.  Now is when the review team develops all the necessary info about the target that will help in the procedure ahead.

Using multiple techniques

Now, you should understand that you would not be able to locate everything through a unique review.  In addition, enterprises must execute manual and automated inspections as an amalgamation.  By conforming to this particular task, you can accomplish total threat visibility.  Moreover, this also signifies that one strategy will uncover things forgotten by the other.  Further, a successful code review utilizes more than one automated tool to locate drawbacks.

Not to assess the risk levels

Here, a particular code review team never makes decisions/ judgments regarding an application’s risk status or permissibility.  On the contrary, they do report whatever they discover, and the customer utilizes the obtained risk review plans or the roadmap to evaluate the risk status.  Ahead, they somehow determine whether to take the risk or not.

Aiming for the big picture

During the operational activities of the Manual Review Code, it is highly recommended not to assess and understand the codebase row by row.  In addition, the dedicated Source Code Review team determines the process of the code as a complete package does and examines the code under the crucial sectors. Moreover, it could be how the code deals with the database or functions that manage the login part mainly.  Ahead, they utilize automated tools to acquire the needful understanding of the intentional or focused regions.

Sticking to the review plan

Organizations present in the global marketplace in today’s world should be alert that code review is never penetration testing.  Moreover, the review team would not test a currently live version of the code as the outcomes may procure a false sense of totality.  Thus, maintaining the review plan is crucial and something the code review team peeks on with consciousness.


To wrap up, we would like to say that we have tried to conceal almost every particular and reality about the Source Code Review, its focus, process, advantages, and the best exercises obeyed by the review team.  Moreover, while covering for application readiness, a source code audit or review is one of the stopovers that makes your code free of security hazards and vulnerabilities.  Finally, if you are keen to know about all the Source Code Reviews Services that Craw Security Pvt. Ltd. delivers under the observation of prominent security analysts, you may contact us at +91-9513805401

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