The secure engineering sub-department is responsible for most of the secure stage of the product. (One portion of the secure stage (threat insights) is a responsibility of the Threat Management engineering sub-department).
To provide content and tools to support the best possible assessment at the earliest possible moment.
For more details about the vision for this area of the product, see the Secure stage page.
We will never knowingly compromise the security posture of your application.
We will give back to the Open Source community We will provide Responsible Disclosure We will share our knowledge and findings at public speaking events
The Secure team works on GitLab's Secure stage.
The following people are permanent members of the Secure Sub-Department:
|Todd Stadelhofer||Director of Engineering, Secure|
|Olivier Gonzalez||Backend Engineering Manager, Secure:Composition Analysis|
|Fabien Catteau||Staff Backend Engineer, Secure:Composition Analysis|
|Tetiana Chupryna||Backend Engineer, Secure:Composition Analysis|
|Can Eldem||Backend Engineer, Secure:Composition Analysis|
|Mo Khan||Senior Backend Engineer, Secure:Composition Analysis|
|Adam Cohen||Senior Backend Engineer, Secure:Composition Analysis|
|Igor Frenkel||Senior Backend Engineer, Secure:Composition Analysis|
|Thomas Woodham||Backend Engineering Manager, Secure:Static Analysis|
|Lucas Charles||Staff Backend Engineer, Secure:Static Analysis|
|Ross Fuhrman||Backend Engineer, Secure:Static Analysis|
|Daniel Searles||Senior Backend Engineer, Secure:Static Analysis|
|Zach Rice||Backend Engineer, Secure:Static Analysis|
|Saikat Sarkar||Senior Backend Engineer, Secure:Static Analysis|
|Seth Berger||Backend Engineering Manager, Secure:Dynamic Analysis|
|Avielle Wolfe||Backend Engineer, Secure|
|Cam Swords||Senior Backend Engineer, Secure:Dynamic Analysis|
|Philip Cunningham||Senior Backend Engineer, Secure:Dynamic Analysis|
|Craig Smith||Senior Backend Engineer, Secure:Dynamic Analysis|
|Neil McCorrison||Frontend Engineering Manager, Secure|
|Paul Gascou-Vaillancourt||Frontend Engineer, Secure|
|Fernando Arias||Senior Frontend Engineer, Secure|
|Mark Florian||Senior Frontend Engineer, Secure|
|Dave Pisek||Senior Frontend Engineer, Secure|
|Dheeraj Joshi||Senior Frontend Engineer, Secure|
|Mark Art||Engineering Manager, Vulnerability Research|
|Julian Thome||Senior Security Engineer, Vulnerability Research|
|James Johnson||Staff Security Engineer, Vulnerability Research|
|Isaac Dawson||Senior Security Engineer, Vulnerability Research|
The following members of other functional teams are our stable counterparts:
|Annabel Dunstone Gray||Product Designer, Secure|
|Andy Volpe||Senior Product Designer, Secure|
|Justin Mandell||Product Design Manager, Configure, Monitor, Secure & Defend|
|Philippe Lafoucrière||Distinguished Backend Engineer, Threat Management, Secure, Defend|
|Tanya Pazitny||Quality Engineering Manager, Secure & Enablement|
|David DeSanto||Director of Product Management, Secure and Defend|
|Sam Kerr||Principal Product Manager, Secure:Fuzz Testing|
|Nicole Schwartz||Product Manager, Secure:Composition Analysis|
|Taylor McCaslin||Senior Product Manager, Secure:Static Analysis|
|Derek Ferguson||Senior Product Manager, Secure:Dynamic Analysis|
|Kyle Mann||Senior Product Designer, Secure & Defend|
|Camellia X. YANG||Senior Product Designer, Secure|
|Rebecca 'Becka' Lippert||Product Designer, Secure|
|Tali Lavi||UX Researcher, Secure|
|Russell Dickenson||Senior Technical Writer, Secure (Static Analysis, Dynamic Analysis), Growth|
|Nick Gaskill||Senior Technical Writer, Secure (Composition Analysis, Fuzz Testing, Vulnerability Research), Defend|
|Will Meek||Senior Software Engineer in Test, Secure:Composition Analysis (primary) & Secure:Exposure Analysis (secondary)|
The Secure Team (previously known as the Security Products Team) is responsible for the security checks features in the GitLab platform, and maps to the secure transversal stage. You can learn more about our approach on the Secure Vision page.
The features provided by the Secure Team are mostly present at the pipeline level, and mostly available as Docker images. This particularity shapes our processes and QA, which differs a bit from the other backend teams.
We still refer to "Security Products" as the tools developed by the Secure Team. Hence the home of our projects in GitLab: https://gitlab.com/gitlab-org/security-products/
SAST (Static Application Security Testing) refers to static code analysis. GitLab leverages the power of various opensource tools to provide a wide range of checks for many languages and support. These tools are wrapped inside docker images which ensure we get a standard output from there. An orchestrator, developed by GitLab, is in charge of running these images, and gathering all the data needed to generate the final report.
DAST (Dynamic Application Security Testing) is used to hit a live application. Because some vulnerabilities can only be detected once all the code is actually running, this method complements the static code analysis. DAST is relying on OWASP Zed Attack Proxy Project, modified by GitLab to enable authentication.
Dependency Scanning is used to detect vulnerabilities introduced by external dependencies in the application. Because a large portion of the code shipped to production is actually coming from third-party libraries, it's important to monitor them as well. Dependency Scanning is relying mostly on the Gemnasium engine.
Container Scanning is used when the application is shipped as a Docker image. It's very common to build the final image on top of an existing one, which must be checked like every other portion of the application. For that, Container Scanning is relying on klar and clair server.
If you are submitting an issue about a Secure Stage feature, use
~devops::secure and one of the following group labels to get the issue in front of the most appropriate team members.
||All issues related to the Secure Stage|
||DAST, IAST, Attack Emulation, Malware Scanning|
||Dependency Scanning, Container Scanning, License Compliance, Secret Detection, Vulnerability Database|
Additional labels should be added according to the Workflow Labels Documentation.
It is important to delineate who the EM and PM DRIs are for every functionality, especially where this may not be obvious. It is documented on a dedicated delineation page.
Because we have a wide range of domains to cover, it requires a lot of different expertises and skills:
|Technology skills||Areas of interest|
|Ruby on Rails||Backend development|
|Go||SAST, Dependency Scanning, Container Scanning|
|SQL (PostgreSQL)||Dependency Scanning / all|
|Docker||Container Scanning / all|
Our team also must have a good sense of security, with at least basic skills in application security.
We provide tools for many different languages (ex: sast, dependency scanning, license compliance). It means our team is able to understand the basics of each of these languages, including their package managers. We maintain tests projects to ensure our features are working release after release for each of them.
500 errors on gitlab.com are reported to Sentry. Below are some quick links to pull up Sentry errors related to Secure.
Our team occasionally schedules synchronous brainstorming sessions as a method of deep-diving on a specific topic. This approach can be useful in breaking down complexity and deriving actionable steps for problems that lack definition.
We tend to schedule these on a weekly cadence with a rotating timeslot to accommodate team members in different timezones. If a topic is not agreed upon prior to a given week, the slot is canceled to avoid unnecessary meetings. These slots can be viewed on the Secure Stage Team Calendar.
These are purposefully freeform to allow for creative problem solving. When possible, time should be reserved for a list of actions to be taken from the open discussion.
Brainstorming Sessions Doc (Internal): https://docs.google.com/document/d/179JL5RzbgSIz2XZewbYn79cuX7_vUtte_TcoLwUUC5o/edit#
Examples of previous brainstorming topics:
As the product evolves, it is important to maintain accurate and up to date documentation for our users. If it is not documented, customers may not know a feature exists.
To update the documentation, the following process should be followed:
~Documentationlabel, outline in the description of the issue what documentation is needed, and assign a Backend Engineer and Technical Writer(TW) to the issue (find the appropriate TW by searching the product categories).
Since we are a remote company, having daily standup meetings would not make any sense, since we're not all in the same timezone. That's why we have async daily standups, where everyone can give some insights into what they did yesterday, what they plan to do today, etc. For that, we rely on the geekbot slack plugin to automate the process.
description in backquote+
[link to issue](#)" format when mentioning issues in your standup report.
What did you do since yesterday?to denote the current state:
:ci_...icon you find applicable
What did you do since yesterday?
Spotbugs java analyzer compareKey is not uniquehttps://gitlab.com/gitlab-org/gitlab-ee/issues/10860
Allow guests to create an issue from a vulnerabilityhttps://gitlab.com/gitlab-org/gitlab-ee/issues/7813
As our teams focus on different areas, we have Geekbot configured to broadcast to separate channels in addition to our common one at #s_secure-standup.
Our important meetings are recorded and published on YouTube, in the GitLab Secure Stage playlist. They give a good overview of the decision process, which is often a discussion with all the stakeholders. As we are a remote company, these video meetings help to synchronize and take decisions faster than commenting on issues. We prefer asynchronous work, but for large features and when the timing is tight, we can detail a lot of specifications. This will make the asynchronous work easier, since we have evaluated all edge cases.
New hires should go through these steps and read the corresponding documentation when onboarding in the Secure Team. Every new hire will have an assigned onboarding issue that will guide them through the whole process.
Secure uses a workflow based on the Product Development Flow with some additions (which are under experiment).
Specific deadlines of this workflow are defined in the Product Development Timeline.
To maximize our velocity and meet our deliverables, we also follow a refinement process for all issues.
The Product Development Flow implies the existence of queues identified with
workflow:: labels and depending on your role in the group, you may be involved in different queues.
|ready for development||X||X||X|
The Product Development Flow guideline explains each step in detail, but here are some clarifications/additions:
workflow::design: when requested by PM and UX, the engineering team will be involved in the design step. As this can represent a significant amount of work, it is important to apply the
~frontendlabels to the issue as early as possible. EM will then assign Engineers and roughly weight the issue (or timebox it) so that this effort is taken into account when doing capacity check. Engineers assigned to
workflow::designissues collaborate with PM, UX and EM to provide a practical solution to the problem.
workflow::solution validation: the engineering team is NOT involved in solution validation since we assume the design step already delivered a viable solution from an engineering perspective.
workflow::planning breakdown: PM, UX, and EM break down the solution into smaller implementation issues. These issues represent deliverable chunks of the solution from a user perspective. This often means that an epic is created and an MVC is defined with follow-up issues, in further iterations, to deliver the complete solution. EM can delegate this to engineers when necessary. When implementation issues are created, they can be refined by the engineers. Planning breakdown issues should have
secure:refinement-frontendlabels to indicate needed refinement.
workflow::scheduling: PM priotizes issues in this queue to be picked up in upcoming milestones by EM. Issues remaining in this queue after EM has assigned up to their team's capacity, for a given milestone, must be moved to the next one(s).
workflow::ready for development: EM applies this label to issues that the engineering team commit to work on for a given milestone. This is based on capacity and other constraints.
workflow::In dev: Engineers apply this label when starting to work on an issue. If the issue involves multiple Merge Requests, it stays in this queue untill they are all created and in review.
workflow::In review: Merge Requests are being reviewed by reviewers and maintainers. If the issue involves multiple Merge Requests, it stays in this queue untill they are all merged.
workflow::verification: Changes have been merged and engineers are waiting for them to be deployed on the different environments (staging, canary, and production). Once deployed, engineers enable the feature flag (if any) and validate that it's working as expected.
To work with these queues we leverage issue boards and relevant filters. We value asynchronous communication but it is also highly recommended to have a weekly sync meeting between PM, UX, and EM to review these queues:
planning breakdown, and
scheduling. This ensures we keep moving issues forward and constantly have items to work on in each step of the process.
milestonefilter with the current milestone +1 (the current milestone is already released).
The Secure Team follows the coding standards and style guidelines outlined in the company-wide Contributor and Development Docs, however, please consult the following guidelines which are specific to the Secure Team:
We occasionally need to build out new analyzer projects to support new frameworks and tools. In doing so we should follow our engineering Open Source guidelines, including licensing and code standards.
In addition, to write a custom analyzer that will integrate into the GitLab application a minimal featureset is required:
Please see our security-report-schemas for a full list of required fields.
The security-report-schema repository contains JSON schemas that list the required fields for each report type:
The Secure Team conducts a department wide retrospective on the 24th of each month. You can see previous topics within our past Secure team retrospectives issues.
Each month an engineering manager from one of our teams acts as the DRI for the retrospective. This individual schedules sessions and captures our focus outcomes to acheive in the next milestone.
Retro handoff process
To provide a soft handoff betwen milestones we rely on the current retro DRI to take a few steps. On the 1st of the month: