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Many companies write softwares that faces security threats and vulnerabilities. These threats can lead to data breaches and cyber-attacks, costing companies a lot of money and damaging their reputation. Consequently, the loss of trust also causes a decline in customer confidence. Since the digital age began, developers have written software in many programming languages. However, human errors and complex code can expose a company’s data. These problems create vulnerabilities that stress the IT department and company stakeholders.

Today businesses are using the Rust language to write secure software. This ensures long-term success. Developers can write secure code with fewer mistakes using Rust, reducing the risk of security breaches. As a result, companies save money on damages and legal fees. This article explains how Rust can save money by reducing security problems. Companies have already benefited from using it.


How does a programming language play a role in software security and vulnerabilities?

The programming language you choose can have a big impact on software security. A significant number of security problems come from memory safety issues. A Microsoft study from 2019 found that about 70% of security bugs are due to these problems.

But what exactly are those memory safety issues? It could be about

  • Trying to use memory that has already been freed.
  • Attempting to use a piece of memory that hasn’t been initialized.
  • Accessing memory that hasn’t been set up with a value.
  • Attempting to free the same piece of memory more than once.
  • When a program doesn’t release memory it no longer needs it.
  • Writing more data to a buffer (a block of memory) than it can hold.

Managing memory is crucial not just for making programs run efficiently but also for keeping them secure. Different programming languages handle memory in different ways. 

Languages like Java, Go, and Python automatically handle memory allocation and freeing. They use techniques like reference counting or garbage collection to manage memory. These techniques simplify programming and help prevent many memory safety issues, but only up to a certain scale.

Rust’s Approach to Memory Management

Rust takes a distinctive path to memory management with an ownership system instead of a garbage collector.  This system rigorously checks memory safety during compile time. It enforces strict rules on memory usage. Additionally, Rust’s compiler features a borrow checker to ensure compliance with these rules. As a result, Rust achieves both speed and safety, circumventing the runtime overhead of a garbage collector.

Moreover, Rust’s standard library plays a crucial role in preventing memory safety issues. The built-in buffer types have bounds checks. They prevent attempts to read or write beyond allocated memory. This proactive approach to memory management makes Rust’s reputation better. It shows that the language values safety and reliability.


What makes Rust a safer choice?

Rust stands out from other languages due to its secure design choices. Here are some of them that companies consider while rewriting softwares in rust.

  1. Safe Abstraction Patterns

Rust promotes safe abstraction patterns, which are instrumental in reducing the risk of security flaws. It does this by offering libraries and features for writing secure code. These resources provide developers with safe methods to handle strings, parse input, and work with cryptographic operations.

  1. Concurrency support

Moving forward, Rust provides built-in support for safe concurrency through its ownership and borrowing rules. This enables developers to write concurrent code that is free from data races, a significant security flaw in multi-threaded programs. Rust’s concurrency model ensures proper synchronization of shared data, effectively preventing common bugs.

  1. Ownership and borrowing

Furthermore, Rust’s ownership system ensures that memory is managed safely, revolutionizing memory management and strengthening security. By enforcing strict rules around the compiler, this system eliminates issues like dangling pointers and data races, commonly encountered in C++ multi-threaded programs. The ownership system guarantees memory safety at compile time without relying on garbage collection or runtime checks.

  1. Compiler-enforced safety guarantees

Rust’s compiler enforces a set of strict rules and checks at compile time to ensure safety. It analyzes code for potential issues like null pointer dereferences, and buffer overflows. If the code violates these safety guarantees, the compiler will refuse to compile it. This forces the developer to fix the issues before the code can be executed.

As a result, Rust provides developers with greater confidence in the reliability and security of their software.


Companies are very effective with Rust rewrites

The companies that have switched to Rust for their software rewrites are loving it. Rust tackles those costly security flaws. It does this with its unique memory management and safety features. It’s like having a shield around your code. 

Quantum is a post CSS engine in the Firefox browser that applies CSS rules to a page. Over the course of time, there have been 69 major security bugs in Firefox’s style component. By 2017, Mozilla had made two previous attempts to parallelize the style system using C++. Both had failed. 

Out of 69 major bugs, only 43 received official security classifications. Mozilla’s security engineers assign the classifications and they base them on educated guesses about “exploitability”. Normal bugs might show missing features or crashes. Not all crashes leak data or change behavior. Official security bugs can be low to critical. They might let an attacker run code on the user’s platform. Furthermore, there’s a significant overlap between memory vulnerabilities and severe security problems. Specifically, of the 43 critical/high bugs, 32 were memory-related and were just solved with their Rust rewrite.

Microsoft made a smart move by using Rust to build a crucial part of Azure IoT Edge. One important part of Azure IoT Edge is called the Security Daemon. It helps Edge talk to other services on the computer, like ones that manage containers and special security hardware.

Before Microsoft released Azure IoT Edge for everyone to use, they checked it for security problems. They hired experts to try and break it. Surprisingly, the part of the code written in Rust had zero security issues. This meant Rust did a great job in keeping the Security Daemon safe. Rust helped make Azure IoT Edge better, and now Microsoft is using Rust for more projects because of how well it worked.

AWS accounts for 17% of Amazon’s $143,313 billion in overall revenue. Firecracker is an open-source virtualization technology. It powers AWS Lambda and other serverless offerings. It was one of the first Rust projects at Amazon.

Since then, Rust has been used for critical services. These include Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3), Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2), and Amazon CloudFront. In 2020, AWS introduced Bottlerocket, a Linux-based container operating system built entirely in Rust. Also, Rust is the preferred language for making new parts of the AWS Nitro System. This includes sensitive apps like Nitro Enclaves. AWS’s commitment to Rust extends beyond mere usage. In 2019, AWS became a sponsor of the Rust project, solidifying its support for the language’s development.


Rust is a great and well thought programming language for better software development. It is strong in memory safety, data race safety, and performance. As a result, It is ideal for creating secure software and leads to fewer critical security issues.  This makes it a valuable asset for companies looking to build robust and safe software systems. Are you interested in improving software security? Do you want to help make the digital world safer? If so, now is a great time to start learning Rust and join the community efforts.

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