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Source Code Review: Why and When? Why Is It Important?

Source Code Review

How does software development take place, or what are the associated steps that mould a project? The seven phases of the software development life cycle revolve around planning, analysis, design, development, testing, implementation & maintenance. Out of these seven keen phases, the development zone marks the soul fertility of the project. And here is where source code review caters for their worth, gelling in with the development phase.

Programmers are like the farmers that deliver the needed fertility, and it’s their skill, ability, research and dedication that ripes the fruit project. The very fact that programmers are indeed humans, mistakes and errors are common to be spotted. A single mistake can disrupt the entire framework and gets you clock-beaten. It is where the vitality of source code reviews audits and source code review service accompanies your development cycle. Let us dig a little more into what is a source code review.

What is a Code Review?

As we stressed on human negligence, errors and faults that may appear in the coding segment, the very cause calls for a code review just after the development phase. Code reviews point to a stage that adjoins the development cycle where software source codes get exploited for detecting irregularities, inconsistencies and quality against system requirements. A flat code could anytime trigger issues and inconsistencies while coming to the software integration part. It has tossed a huge concern that needs to get addressed. A code review process shoots 5 major areas that seek the attention.

  • Code faults/issues
  • Code inconsistency
  • Code quality
  • Code efficiency
  • Documentation quality

With time-consuming factors at one end, many organizations prefer secure source code review services from testing experts. A standardized and accurate source code can be the solution-by-product availing the service benefits of a source code review company. There are two broad classifications of review systems, namely peer review and external review. A peer review points to the functionality, use, design and implementation of suggested flaws to the stated problems. The reviewer should have the business bound and expertise to deliver improvements. On the other end, an external review focuses on code quality and smells, improving its quality and effectiveness, gelling in with different layers of the development cycle. An external reviewer’s expertise lie with the design and quality of codes and in proposing necessary changes and improvements.

The vitality of Code Review

Before stretching upon the benefits of code review, let us quick gaze how a code review works. Initially, a team of developing and testing experts gather for source code evaluation. The role of the team is to examine and review (both negative and positive) the source code concerning the project objective, readability and maintainability issues. Code reviews can happen anytime during the development cycle on an ad-hoc synchronous basis and instant demand. It can make the code accurate and bug-free for the later development phases. On the other end, manual source code review and automated secure source code review mark the hybrid approach of reviewing the codebase. The source code review team also extends as a part of the development team as an integrated service. The best advisory services help to remediate the existing issues and move forward with an efficient code at hand. Now, let us wrap the best bid benefits of having a source code review service for your organization.


1. Tracking/Sorting bugs

An efficient source code review by an external reviewer can clearly track every bug that lurks in the code. Developers who write long codes on different projects can often make numerous errors, and if not properly sorted out, are prone to serious after-backs. The role of an external reviewer in the development phase helps to save time and payroll, catching bugs at the earliest. Earlier inspected, cheaper it is to be fixed. A secure source code review company will look at every nook of your codebase relating to thread synchronization issues, resource leaks and security issues. They make sure that unit tests cover all code paths, errors conditions and limit cases.

2. Building code quality

Code review and source code security audit primarily aim for accurate code efficiency and bug catching at the earliest. An effective code review helps to detect issues before they could turn into an upset for your organization. It can continuously improve code standards and quality, resulting in seamless integration and functionality of the software. Ultimately, the need for robust software gets met with effective code review and audits. The resulting product is a well-tested, clear, bug-free, documented and efficient code that can gleam lights in software development and performances. Indeed, code quality is an element that can assure continuity and ease with any software project.

3. Maintainability & continuity

Software development is always a continual process as with future enhancements, improvements, feature additions and revamping. It never ceases with the initial creation or project completion. It is the responsibility of a developer to ensure continuity for the future. It also requires any other authorized person to modify the code in the absence of the parent creator. For this, the code should be efficient, maintainable and fault-free from the roots. A source code review ensures that code lines have necessary comments affixed and a proper code organization. Any other person involved in the project should get a clear image and context of the usage. An efficient code review focuses on such aspects and helps to deliver maximum continuity and maintainability.

4. Easing the QA test

Delivering a consistent standard while working on code reviews and audits can ease the clock and task for other specialist testers. Testers will have a clear idea and picture when you maintain that consistency throughout. The QA testing phase will feel the ease and robustness of the source code without worrying about the quality of the codebase. A proper source code evaluation avoids further delays associated with the testing phase and could speed up the entire project. The reworking scenario in the development cycle gets eliminated while having the expert advice and service benefits of a source code review company.



5. Learning perspective

Code review supports knowledge sharing and learning. Every member of the project team will have a better understanding and idea of coding flaws. Developers also learn to adapt to changes, reliable techniques, coding standards and the best practices associated. While you have a code review service, it’s all easy-flexible for any new project joiners to grab the insight. Perhaps code review gleams the learning lights for everyone connected to the project. Senior developers can aid beginners with advisory roles, and even many source code review companies are ready to be a part of the core development team.


6. Effective documentation

Code reviews are an essential element responsible for effective documentation. The documentation is the canonical description of the review process and policies.

The quality assurance strategy of the review system aid organizations well identify and spot code flaws and bugs and suggest improvements. Efficient documentation will reflect these insights and provide all details regarding the process. It also eases the way for developers to make future upgrades. It could be adding features or upgrading existing ones with the ongoing project.

Secure Source Code Review

A secure source code review circles both manual and automated processes to detect code vulnerabilities as a part of ensuring the required security standard. It involves auditing the application’s source code to verify whether proper security and logic controls are present. The process also tends developers to follow quality coding techniques that are secure enough for the organization’s control and privacy. An automated secure source code review process uses specific code review tools. They aid in identifying application security weaknesses in the code. The process is much faster than the manual code review process, where source codes are evaluated line by line. Manual reviews are more strategic and investigate specific issues.

Difference between Code Review and Secure Source Code Review

A secure source code review is an enhancement model for the standard source code review process. In contrast with source code reviews, the service model eyes on security considerations and standards. It adequately covers all security-related risks present in the codebase, ensuring an accurate context to the reviewers. A source code review focuses on code quality, consistency, maintainability and performance. On the other hand, a secure code review service assures the most required security aspect as a sign of maturity for your application.

Developing a Code Review process

The review methodology for securing a healthy code standard and eradicating potential threats relies on expert security professionals involved in the process. It requires experts to evaluate, identify and prioritize software vulnerabilities detected in the testing phase of the review process.

  • Threat Modelling: A deep study on the codebase, existing threats and vulnerabilities and sorting a priority list for reviews.
  • Code Analysis: According to the requirement, security experts conduct analysis on source codes through manual or automated tests.
  • Reporting Phase: Involves an executive summary of inspected issues and founded vulnerabilities with action plans or remediation measures.
  • Findings review: The reporting phase follows a findings review with the client technical team suggesting the best security practices in terms of deployment.

Why does a Secure Source Code Review matter?

  • Developers need to understand the involved potential security risks and exposure points of their codebase.
  • Organizations lack security professionals with a coding background, affecting mutual collaborations.
  • Fast-paced business and production desires often compromise security needs, flattening the verge of future attacks.
  • Lacking awareness of potential security risks, breaches, and hefty penalties concerned with data and privacy compromises.
  • Aids in building code quality, project continuity, maintainability, and at the same time unties the wrap of security concerns.

Code Review on agile projects

An agile project or methodology is an iterative approach based on customer feedback and collaborations to manage software development projects. Code review plays a significant part in the agile environment as the method focuses on security and risk management. The traditional code review approach (Fagan Inspection) was inefficient in many ways. It involved two or more people converging together to inspect and review the source code, detecting faults and irregularities. Afterward, the teams come together and share their feedback.

With the evolvement of time and need, newer review approaches like the peer-reviewing method gained popularity. The peer programming model is more ad-hoc and helps programmers define the best. In peer programming, two programmers (one as the source code reader and the other as the author) work on the same source code line. The approach depends on the exchange of codes and using the feedback for the next level, supporting knowledge transfer and the learning process. The use of ideal third-party collaboration tools also adds to the hybrid blend of the review process.

DevOps & DevSecOps

DevOps methodology focuses on scaling software development to high levels, by integrating the development phase to deployment operations. It optimizes time as well as resources for better productivity and understanding of development integration. On the flip side, DevSecOps is an art of integrating security measures into the DevOps process. The methodology put hands around the application’s security aspects through a variety of security techniques. DevOps and DevSecOps rely on automating every aspect of applications, including security audits.

Final Thoughts

The secure source code review system has a vital role in the development cycle of an application and connected organizational security posture. Additionally, it has given the developers an easy way to rectify code bugs, flaws, and other potential vulnerabilities. It has also resulted in better development structure, maintainability, flexibility, and integration of the project development cycle. Secure source code evaluation services have given more space and freedom for the testing team with offered security deployment measures for the underlying codebase. To the extent programming advancement is an interaction that needs progression, source code surveys empower designers to keep up with that stance with highlight upgrades and enhancements. It also made way for newer human resources to understand, get advisory and deploy the right security strategies.