Web Applications Security becomes essential as more and more data gets stored in web applications. As such, testing of web applications determines that sensitive data stays confined and the users accomplish only those tasks that they are permitted to perform.
Web Security testing is a wide-ranging process which includes a multitude of processes that implement the security testing of a web application. It is a methodical process which starts from identifying the entire application and monitored by planning multiple tests.
Normally, this testing is performed after the web application is developed. The overall process of security testing is usually monitored by a formal report which consists of risks and vulnerabilities. In this article, we will lay on major key aspects that help to overcome from these security shortcomings.
Web Applications Security Testing
The functionality testing verifies each function of the web applications that operates in conformance with the required specification. It assesses all the links in web pages, database connections and forms that are used for getting or submitting information from user in the web pages.
Usability testing includes the following aspects:
- The website should be easy to use
- Instructions should be clear and precise
- Each page must be entitled to the main content
- The content must be consistent enough
Web and Application server interface and application and database server interface are the main interfaces.
The testers assess all the interactions between these servers are executed and handled properly. If web server of a database returns on error message for query by the application server, then application server catch and display these error messages appropriately to the end users.
Compatibility of a website is a very important testing concept, as in this type of testing; the testers assess that which of the compatibility tests to be executed, such as operating system compatibility, printing options, browser compatibility and operating system compatibility.
The tester must be well-versed with HTTP protocol while performing security testing of web applications. He/ she should have the transparent understanding of how the server and client communicate practice HTTP. Although, defects regarding the security of web applications is comparatively low, but the tester must note that each defect must be detected in detail.
While performance testing, a tester must keep a check on the following vulnerabilities:
The consequences of SQL injection are quite severe,as it leads to the leakage of confidential information from the server database. This type of attack is done when there are loopholes in the execution of software or applications and this can be prevented by thoroughly examining the various input fields like comments, text boxes, etc.
In order to extort private information, attackers use password cracking tools, such as passwords or username. The commonly used username or passwords are usually available online, laterally with open source password cracking tools. Therefore, performance testing is important for password cracking.
It is the process where hackers make the necessary changes in the URL query string to access information. Due to lack of security, the confidential data gets leaked. The web applications get vulnerable to URL manipulation when it uses the HTTP GET method to pass information from the client to the server. Therefore, the tester must modify the parameters to analyze in case server accepts it or not.
Also Read Web Application Penetration Testing Checklist – A Detailed Cheat Sheet
Cross Site Scripting
Generally, cross-site scripting happens when a hacker send malicious links or codes to the end user, customarily in the form of a browser side script. XSS allows the attackers to insert client-side script in web pages that are viewed by other users. After the user clicks the URL, the codes get changed and it gives access to the attacker to steal personal data and other critical information.
Under the security testing process, the tester follow the below stated steps:
• Understand and identify the security needs of an application
• Collect all the information regarding setup that is used for developing the web app and network, such as technology, hardware, etc.
• Determine the possible risks and vulnerabilities and make a list
• Make a threat profile based on the list
• Prepare a test plan according to the identified possible risks and vulnerabilities
• Prepare a Traceability Matrix for each risk and vulnerability
• Keep the security test case document ready
• Carry out the security test cases execution
• When the identified defects have been fixed, then retest it
• Execute the regression test cases
• Generate a detailed report on security testing conducted, the risks and vulnerabilities and the risks that still persist.