Policy 909 - Application Development Security Policy

Section: Information Technology
Policy Number: 909
Responsible Office: Information Technology
Effective Date: 5/1/19
Revised: 5/1/19; 6/11/20

Policy Statement

St. John’s University (St. John’s) uses many types of computer software to perform its institutional operations and relies upon the correct functioning and security of the application/software at all times. This policy sets guidance for developing and/or implementing new applications and systems at St. John’s to ensure that all development work is under security controls.

Scope and Applicability

This policy is applicable to the St. John’s Information Technology (IT) department, but its scope covers the entire St. John’s Community. Adherence to this policy helps safeguard the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of St. John’s information assets, and protects the interest of St. John’s, its customers, personnel, and business partners.


St. John’s may develop its own software for purposes where a commercial package is not available or does not fulfill the identified requirements.  In such cases, a structured development method is used to ensure that software is developed to organizational standards and is tested and implemented in a managed way. 

Alterations to in-house developed software such as the addition of fields or screen changes are requested through the change request process.  Changes to in-house developed software must not be made without following the change management process.

Application/Software developed and configured by St. John’s is to be used strictly for the purpose for which it was developed.  Furthermore, security and specifically risk assessment and management are considered during all phases of the development life cycle.

Complete documentation of each module and design documentation is written for each new project and then modified as changes are made to existing application/software.

Test plans for all units and modules are developed and fully documented.  Testing of software should be conducted according to the design requirements.


The following are the definitions relevant to the policy:

  • Computing Resources: All St. John’s information processing resources including all St. John’s owned, licensed, or managed computing services, hardware, software, and use of the St. John’s network via physical or wireless connection regardless of the ownership of the computer or device connected to the network.
  • Institutional Data: All data owned or licensed by St. John’s.
  • University Community: Includes faculty, administrators, staff, student workers, graduate/technical assistants, alumni, interns, guests or agents of the administration, external individuals and organizations accessing St. John’s network services, and other authorized users.


St. John’s reserves the right to audit networks and systems on a periodic basis to ensure compliance with this policy.  Instances of non-compliance must be presented to, reviewed, and approved by the CIO, the Director of Information Security, or the equivalent officer(s).

All breaches of information security, actual or suspected, must be reported to, and investigated by the CIO and the Director of Information Security. 

Those who violate security policies, standards, or security procedures are subject to disciplinary action up to and including loss of computer access and appropriate disciplinary actions as determined by St. John’s.

Related Policies, Standards or Regulations