Secure Programming Foundation


Secure Programming Foundation certification

About the certificate

Core secure programming skills you will validate with your SECO-SPF (S-SPF) certificate

Secure Programming Foundation equips you with the knowledge and skills you need to lay the foundations of a thriving career as a secure software developer, software engineer or software auditor.

By passing the SPF certification exam and earning a SECO-Secure Programming Foundation (S-SPF) certificate, you demonstrate your ability to

  • Understand the importance of security in the software lifecycle and the logic behind industry-approved secure development principles;
  • Understand web application attack surfaces and trust boundaries;
  • Understand the workings of HTTP requests and header injection;
  • Understand password authentication vulnerabilities and effective countermeasures;
  • Understand the security implications of session management and identify effective countermeasures against session fixation;
  • Identify countermeasures against cross-site request forgery (CSRF) and clickjacking attacks;
  • Identify countermeasures against injection attacks;
  • Identify countermeasures against buffer overflows;
  • Identify countermeasures against cross-site scripting (XSS);
  • Identify countermeasures against file upload attacks;
  • Identify countermeasures against character encoding vulnerabilities;
  • Understand privilege escalation and list relevant mitigation techniques;
  • Secure products by hardening and vulnerability scanning;
  • Understand how to prevent side-channel attacks;
  • Understand how to prevent DoS attacks;
  • Understand the importance of good error handling practices;
  • Understand the security risks involved in logging;
  • Understand symmetric and asymmetric cryptography, Man-in-the-Middle attacks, and the pitfalls in SSL/TLS and HTTPS certificates.
  • Explain how security requirements can/should be identified;
  • Perform simple threat modelling exercises and identify security requirements for a system.

What are the benefits of an S-SPF certificate?

An S-SPF certificate demonstrates that you have an in-depth understanding of common software vulnerabilities and best-practice countermeasures. If you are considering a career in software development or software auditing, this ability is essential to set yourself on the path.

Who should certify?

The course and the certificate are ideal for your career advancement if you are a(n)

  • (Aspiring) software developer, software engineer or software auditor;
  • Aspiring lead developer or architect;
  • Aspiring software development manager.

How to prepare for the certification exam?

You can prepare for your certification exam by taking a course or by self-study.

We also offer classroom training through our accredited education partners. To find a course in your country, visit the Get Trained page.

If you prefer to prepare by self-study, make sure that you fully understand the requirements before you book your exam. Download the exam syllabus and the sample exam to familiarise yourself with the structure and topic areas of the certification exam.

How to book a certification exam?

You can take your certification exam at an accredited exam centre or online.

For more information on the exam, please refer to the SECO Examination Guide.

S-SPF certificate and digital badge

Upon successful completion of a SECO Secure Programming Foundation certification exam, you will receive the S-SPF certification title and a digital badge. Your credentials will grant you a one-year SECO membership. After your certification expires, you will have the option to re-certify by paying a small fee.

For more information on the certification process, please refer to the SECO Certifications Guide.



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