Snyk Review

It's easy to find vulnerabilities, create a report, and use the data

What is our primary use case?

There are two use cases that we have for our third-party libraries:

  • We use the Snyk CLI to scan our pipeline. Every time our developer is building an application and goes to the building process, we scan all the third-party libraries there. Also, we have a hard gate in our pipeline. E.g., if we see a specific vulnerability with a specific threshold (CDSS score), we can then decide whether we want to allow it or block the deal.
  • We have an integration with GitHub. Every day, Snyk scans our repository. This is a daily scan where we get the results every day from the Snyk scan. 

We are scanning Docker images and using those in our pipeline too. It is the same idea as the third-party libraries, but now we have a sub-gate that we are not blocking yet. We scan all the Docker images after the build process to create the images. In the future, we will also create a hard gate for Docker images.

How has it helped my organization?

For the security team, it's easy to find vulnerabilities, create a report, and use the data. Every month, we have metrics. I get a report from the Snyk to see how many repositories we have scanned and how many of those repositories are violating our internal policy based on the CDSS score. I can get trends and see that we have been fixing issues. Based on that, we can then lower the score even further. It's easy to find a repository, scan, and vulnerability details associated with a particular issue using a link it provides to the database.

Snyk allows us to spend less time securing applications, increasing their productivity. It adds visibility. In addition, we can get a report and show people that our environment is a bit more secure because we have been fixing the vulnerabilities. It reduces our timing with the automation part and daily scan, which I don't have to worry about since it's always happening. We always have fresh results. Once Snyk is running, you don't have to do much. It's always there running the scans for you.

Because we now have visibility, we can create policies. Those policies are across all departments. Each department has to comply with our policies. We tweak the policy every quarter. Therefore, every quarter we try to have less high-risk vulnerabilities. By doing this, our environment is more secure. If at some point tomorrow, there's a huge unknown vulnerability, it's easy for us to go into Snyk and see if we are impacted or not.

If we have false positive, it will have a negative impact, especially if we are blocking them and it is a false positive. We really appreciate that we haven't seen any false positive coming from Snyk. The information is very reliable. 

The solution has reduced the amount of time it takes to find problems. It adds a lot of visibility. We don't have another tool providing this information. Instead of taking hours, you can find problems in a few minutes with Snyk.

What is most valuable?

The way they are presenting the vulnerabilities after a scan. It's very organized and easy to access. The UI is very organized. I also like that we can use the CLI or commands to run a scan locally or in the pipeline. 

The CLI feature is quite useful because it gives us a lot of flexibility in what we want to do. If you use the UI, all the information is there and you can see what Snyk is showing you, but there is nothing else that you can change. However, when you use the CLI, then you can use commands and can get the output or response back from Snyk. You can also take advantage of that output in a different way. For the same reason, we have been using the CLI for the hard gate in the pipeline: Obtain a particular CDSS score for vulnerability. Based on that information, we can then decide if we want to block or allow the build. We have more flexibility if we use the CLI.

For the pipeline, we use Jenkins, and for storing images in the build, we use Artifactory with some Jenkins integrations. This is super easy because we are using the CLI, which was one of the features that I really like because it's super flexible. You can do a lot of things with the CLI. It's easy to integrate. Same thing with the GitHub integration, Snyk provides Broker images that allow you to coordinate your internal GitHub repository with the cloud solution from Snyk. It's like a proxy.

The UI is super easy to use. I have no issues with the interface.

What needs improvement?

The way Snyk notifies if we have an issue, there are a few options: High vulnerability or medium vulnerability. The problem with that is high vulnerabilities are too broad, because there are too many. If you enable notifications, you get a lot of notifications, When you get many notifications, they become irrelevant because they're not specific. I would prefer to have control over the notifications and somehow decide if I want to get only exploitable vulnerabilities or get a specific score for a vulnerability. Right now, we receive too many high vulnerabilities. If we enable notifications, then we just get a lot of spam message. Therefore, we would like some type of filtering system to be built-in for the system to be more precise.

The same thing applies to policies when you go to the dashboard: Everything is red. Because of the nature of our third-party library, most of them have high security issues. However, too many are identified. Snyk needs to provide a way to add some granularity so you can decide what is relevant.

For how long have I used the solution?

A year.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

So far, it's very stable. We haven't had any issues with the platform.

Deployment and maintenance is done by the security team and DevOps.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We are using them all the time and scalability has not been a problem. I am pretty sure they will keep supporting our company with all our daily scans. I don't see any issues with scalability.

We do have plans to increase the usage. For just our GitHub repository, we are scanning more than 700 repos. We will probably expand that to 1000 or more repos.

Developers go to Snyk only if there is a need regarding a specific vulnerability. Developers do not normally use Snyk. Our security team uses Snyk more often. Snyk tries to put this tool towards developers, but there are not that many developers using this tool compared to the security team.

Since we have been adding this CLI to the pipeline and scanning the entire build, most developers have been creating an Snyk account in our organization. Since we are sort of forcing this on them, they need to have access. They have been using it but only if they get a block or need to fix a vulnerability. The account integration is easy for them to request access to and the process is quick.

We have 120 users, including the whole security team, the cloud operations team, DevOps, a lot of developers, and user members.

How are customer service and technical support?

The technical support is really good. They are very quick. They take care of you. If there is an issue, they will try to solve it.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

Our company did not use anything before Snyk.

I have used Nexus IQ in another company.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is easy and straightforward. The documentation is very specific with the commands for the CLI. They provide support, if you have any questions. I was always talking with somebody from the Snyk. 

We use a sliding configuration between our company and Snyk, so the communication is super easy. Most of the time, they have already documented the issue or how-to. Or, if you have an extra question, they are super quick responding back to you.

The deployment for Snyk's hard integration was a week. Building the hard gate and sub-gate took a little bit longer (about a month) just to have everything integrated, but they were not fully dedicated when they did integration. If you really need to do the integration, you can probably do it in a couple of weeks.

Implementation strategy: We started with the third-party library solutions from Snyk. Now, we are moving to the container solution.

What was our ROI?

We have not seen ROI yet.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

You can get a good deal with Snyk for pricing. It's a little expensive, but it is worth it.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Snyk's vulnerability database is pretty accurate. I have used other tools in the past and they were not that accurate or specific. Sometimes, I was not sure if something was a false positive or not. However, Snyk is very strong on this sense. I haven't seen any false positives.

What other advice do I have?

If we find an issue, then we talk to our developers who have a specific amount of days to fix the vulnerability. However, we are not fully using all the features that Snyk provides. While I know they could make a suggestion or do automation to fix issues, we are not using those features.

Snyk has really nice features. They take into consideration what customers are telling or suggesting to them. It's a very good product. I would rate it a nine (out of 10).

**Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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