If one made software, but later needed others to work on the project, how to secure the software files and source code if one of the developers tried to share the source code with others or if someone split from the team and tried to do something with their knowledge of the source code (like trying to hack the software)?


Through legal agreements.

You can't really stop this through technical means; the developers needs access to the source code, and need to understand it.

Someone who understands source code can find vulnerabilities in it. Someone who has wide-level access to source code can copy it. That's why you have legal agreements; you get hired to work, and in exchange for the salary you'll agree that you have no rights to the code, and that vulnerabilities shall be disclosed internally; not abused.

If you break it, you'll find yourself a likely target of a lawsuit.

Digital files cannot be made uncopyable, any more than water can be made not wet.

-- Bruce Schneier (and probably others)

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    There are still other ways apart from legal agreements. One can make sure that developers cannot spoil or misuse their knowledge of the source code by physically isolating the developers from the rest of the world for the time of development and maybe after and by eliminating their knowledge after the work was done through brain washing or simply killing. Even the likelihood of being killed might be sufficient to prevent defection. Most developers would probably prefer the legal agreements though. Jun 5 at 5:30
  • @SteffenUllrich That would explain some of the "quality" software I've used...
    – vidarlo
    Jun 5 at 8:02

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