Many people think that for a piece of software to be as usable as possible, you have to sacrifice security, and vice versa. While it can be the case that the more secure something becomes, the more complicated it gets, it is possible to strike the right balance between ease of use and security. And in fact, to make the most of a piece of software, it’s imperative that you find that balance.

In this article, we share some tips you can follow during the software development process to ensure your software does not sacrifice security for usability.

Start with a security mindset

Focusing on security may seem daunting at first - after all, a secure product generally tends to run slower and make the application less user-friendly. However, focusing on security right from the start allows the software developer to make the necessary implementations to allow the software to perform at its best while maintaining excellent security. Also, the developer can ensure that the application stays as user-friendly as possible.

It is still important to think about usability at this stage and taking both factors into account will allow developers to balance security and usability while still meeting the needs and requirements of the project.

Minimize complexity and maximize simplicity

The more complex an application becomes, the more power it requires. Overly complex codes hinder usability, performance, and security. The longer and more confusing the lines of code, the higher the chances of loopholes and gaps in the code—all of which can lead to security breaches. This is the reason simplicity has to be the name of the game, and with shorter codes, the chances of errors are reduced significantly.

For instance, if you only need a five word passcode to access your mobile application, then leave it at that. You might be considering implementing other security checks, such as fingerprint scans, but this can be an annoyance for your users and could prevent them from engaging with your app. If you can keep things simple while still keeping the app secure, you’ll have the best of both worlds.

Striking the balance between usability and security could include things such as incorporating simple yet effective security layers into your app that still motivates users to access your software while keeping their information safe. Don’t put any unnecessary or overcomplicated barriers between your user and your application, instead, implement something understandable and simple.