Web application security, one of the most significant components in the web app extension, frequently gets ignored.
Within code development, app management, and visual design, web application security risks are frequently overlooked or are not accurately focused upon. And this can be detrimental to the organization.
If you are looking to increase the strength of web application security and want to go commercial with your app, then you are in the right place.
There are several techniques to develop web app security easily and effectively. Here, we have gathered some efficient ways to assist you in building your web app security.
In this blog, we will show you the best ways to enhance the development of web application security and make a case for why all web developers should be involved in completing or appointing a Cyber Security Specialist to accomplish the task for them.
What is Web Application Security?
Web application security is a fundamental component of any web-based company. The global visibility of the internet makes web resources vulnerable to attacks from different locations and different levels of measure and complexity.
Thus, web application security is invaluable, especially for security encompassing websites, web applications, and web services such as APIs.
Web application security is the process of defending websites and online services against the different security attacks that utilize vulnerabilities in an application’s code.
The Common objectives for web application assaults are content management systems, database administration tools, and SaaS applications.
A majority of web application attacks happen through cross-site scripting and SQL injection attacks.
These are typically made possible by flawed coding and non-sanitization of application inputs and outputs. These charges are ranked in the 2009 CWE/SANS among the top 25 Most Critical Programming Errors.
Future of web application security
We all know that the threat of web security development is increasing at a rapid rate. At the Gartner Security and Risk Management Summit this year, several predictions were made on the Future of Application Security. Some of the key predictions were:
- In 2022, software composition analysis (SCA) will exceed traditional AST tools (SAST, DAST), the principal tool in the AppSec toolbelt.
- In 2023, inadequate security testing capacities incorporated into the development toolchain will identify more vulnerabilities than dedicated SAST solutions.
- In 2022, 10 percent of coding vulnerabilities classified by static application security testing (SAST) will be remediated automatically with code instructions implemented from automated solutions, up from less than 1 percent now.
As we are existing in a time when endpoints are quickly changing — traditional servers, desktops, and laptops are connected on business networks by tablets, smartphones, Internet of Things, sensors, and even wearable tech like the Apple Watch.
All are, in theory, a possible attack surface — and each offers to the query, by allowing hackers new policies from which to orchestrate attacks on web applications.
Thus, when you examine the fame of offsite clouds, in which web applications are usually hosted, you start to get a sense of just how stimulating the area of web application security is expected to become.
Thus, security experts will have to stay on their toes to keep up, strengthen their links to web application developers, and continuously develop the tools described above.
Ways to strengthen Web Application Security
Web application scanners or vulnerability scanners are used to detect web application vulnerabilities, malware, and logical flaws through daily or on-demand comprehensive scanning.
Scanners like Indusface Application Scanner help businesses to mitigate flaws and provide detailed information about the vulnerability along With PoC.
- Keep your servers and software strengthened and up-to-date
- Verify user input
- Ask experts or specialists to ‘Attack’ your Web Application
- Content Security Policy
- Multi-factor Authentication
- Do not entirely rely on tools
- Offload all the sensitive security tasks
- Always Back Your Data Up
- Always use SSL (HTTPS) Encryption
- Learn How to Attack Your Security
1. Keep your Servers and Software Strengthened and up-to-date
It’s essential to keep your software up-to-date. Yes, it is one of the most crucial ways of boosting web application security is by always keeping it updated as updates contain important patches that can secure the most advanced security vulnerabilities and mitigate cyber-attacks.
Unpatched and old software make your web application and data more prone/ vulnerable to cyber-attacks. And not only that, taking various backups of your website data is equally important.
2. Verify user Input
You run a higher risk of being targeted by malware and other types of attacks when the users get to submit any kind of data. Verifying your web app’s user input will enable you to defend your web application from XSS and CSRF attacks.
In this situation, you have two basic options available, whitelisting and blacklisting, while verifying user input.
Creating a whitelist will stop unapproved data from getting assigned to the application. For example, if you have a plan that asks for a user’s phone number, the whitelist will just accept numbers.
If the user inserts non-digit characters, then it will eliminate those unapproved characters. If someone adds words within a phone number, the words will get carried out, dropping the numbers as the input.
Whereas, a blacklist takes the opposite approach by determining what types of input it will not allow. Both methods have related results, but they operate from diverse angles to make sure incoming data is safe.
3. Ask experts or specialists to ‘Attack’ your Web Application
To discover and gain in-depth insights about your website’s security hazards, you can simulate by yourself or with the guidance of an expert. This is an important web application security best practice to stay on top of everything that is running on your site.
Thus, by learning the techniques that attackers may apply on your web app, you can completely shield the entry points and situations.
If you plan to do it yourself, it is essential to ensure that you don’t split anything with automatic scans. Additionally, problems may arise if your web host forbids your IP while attacking your site. Thus, it is essential to do any testing in an isolated environment.
4. Content Security Policy
Content security policy is an emerging browser pattern. The main purpose is to generate a standardized framework to implement browser-based security that will obstruct XSS, with lower developer engagement.
5. Multi-factor Authentication
Passwords, as a sole authentication factor, are gone. A better authentication clarification is two-factor (2FA) or even multi-factor authentication (MFA). 2FA/MFA has fought to achieve popularity in the past due to the inefficiencies of always requiring a second device just to confirm a user’s identification.
But mobile devices are rapidly becoming the ‘what you have’ determinant.
While on the other hand, SMS and native apps for MFA are not complete, they do gradually reduce risk versus password-only authentication. Thus, several consumer websites and additional online assistance, such as Google, Apple, Facebook, Twitter, Blizzard, and many more, now offer multi-factor authentication.
6. Do not entirely rely on tools
One interesting note about the now-infamous Target Breach is that the malware utilized to steal data was undetectable by security tools/ products. Several firms make the same mistake; they put security tools in place and hope that they would not require to do hands-on testing.
Well, most critical vulnerabilities are challenging or unlikely to be discovered through automated scans alone. Tools have their position in application security but cannot and must not entirely substitute hands-on testing.
For, example a nasty vulnerability that a tool wouldn’t recognize is what OWASP describes an “Insecure Direct Object Reference”. This is where an application implements some sort of signal to a report in a database, just like an account number. Hence, you must not wholly rely on tools.
7. Offload all the sensitive security tasks
You are moving one step further–what happens if your application manages sensitive data like payment information from customers? By offloading these duties, you decrease your risks as you don’t manage their credit card information.
So, if you handle payments from customers, it is better to offload this to a protected payment processor who is trained in securing and handling transactions. This not only benefits you to defend your customers’ information but also offloads a large deal of extension work and liability.
8. Always Back Your Data Up
In the case of a security violation or malware infection and you need to restore your website, it would be tragic not to have the latest version of your website backed up and ready to use.
When it’s time to go live speedily, you’ll be glad you had it stick away. So always remember to keep a full backup of your data as soon as possible. Thus, a majority of host providers will implement backups from their servers in case an occasion like this happens.
9. Always use SSL (HTTPS) Encryption
Using SSL (HTTPS) encryption should be considered a necessity and get preference. HTTPS can accurately defend vulnerable and exploitable data like social security numbers, credit, and debit card numbers, and login erudition for team members and users equally.
Along with HTTPS, data that is inserted into a web app must be encrypted so that to make it a useless effort for hackers to try and exfiltrate the application for such confidential information.
10. Learn How to Attack Your Security
Determining how to attack your web application is one of the most efficient ways to identify security issues. If there are gaps/ misconfigurations in web app security, someone will ultimately obtain it.
By detecting these first, you can take solid action to repair the loopholes and decrease the impact of the attack. So, developers must take the time to study the methods that attackers use to hack into applications and how best to attack the application.
Today, the whole world depends on the internet. With the fast growth of hacking activities, it is imperative to keep your website or web applications secure against all ill-disposed activities.
As a web developer, you can seek a Web Application Security Course to know all the details of the world of Cyber Security and Ethical Hacking. The alternative is that they can borrow a Cyber Security Specialist to accomplish the job for you,
Well, we hope that this article helped you and that your know-how on increasing the strength of Web Application Security has improved in the context of an ever-growing threat landscape and increasing sophistication of attacks.
We look forward to knowing your views and thoughts on improving the strength of Web App Security. Share your thoughts in the comment section below. If you liked this post, do not forget to share this post with your friends, familyand on your social profiles.