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Top 15 Web Application Security Practices You Should Know

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Top 15 Web Application Security Practices You Should Know

Manual penetration testing, while a vital periodic task, is nowhere near enough to continuously maintain a consistent security posture across all your web assets. So apart from security testing in the SDLC, you also need to regularly test sites and applications that are already in production. This is especially important for third-party assets and anything that is not in active development and therefore not covered by whatever security testing you are doing in the dev pipeline. It covers all of the most common security issues that developers encounter when building out their web applications.

web application security practices

A session ID needs to belong so that hackers cannot easily break it. Consider all components as vulnerable and analyze them from the perspective of security. While creating the layout of the network infrastructure, also consider the people who have network access controls. As a proactive practice, you can create a document of all the components and extensions of your application. Your website application should have security features that protect your application and prevent the above listed and other threats.

Because if you display “wrong password,” the attacker will use it to brute-force this account. Also, a leak of basic error handling can lead to the system shutdown. Input validation is conducted to ensure that properly formed data enter the workflow in an information system. Thus, we prevent malformed data from persisting in the database and the malfunction of components. Also, the password must be able to ‘age’ so the system enforces its change. So, first-level actions will save your application from most modern attacks, including OWASP’s top 10.

How Ateam Soft Solutions can help?

This article will shed light on web application security – the possible threats and the best web application security practices you should follow. If you go through recent cyber security threats and crimes worldwide, you must reconsider your security systems. Modern web applications are complex and may have different responses to critical error states. Surely, handling those errors right is essential to make your application secure. To make the process of digital identity implementation secure, you can also use multi-factor authentication and cryptographic-based authentication .

For example, in the USA, federal regulations, such as the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, or state laws, such as the California SB-1386 apply to data collection and storage. In the EU, the GDPR Or have already made it mandatory to treat personal data in web applications with diligent attention, irrespective of the application. Even though web application security attacks are perpetrated by criminals, the burden of preventing attacks and securely storing and using customer or other business data falls on the business.

web application security practices

GDPR, HIPAA, PCI, ISO/IEC and more such compliances have kicked in to ensure that businesses don’t get away with compromising on security that protects user privacy. Not taking web application security seriously can lead to noncompliance issues regarding these regulations, which can result in heavy fines, penalties and lawsuits. IBM reports, the average cost of a security breach is $3.86 million. Their analysis of attack vectors shows that 16% of the breaches stem from vulnerabilities in third-party software.

The normal bucket list will contain components that hackers may not have any knowledge of. However, it is a good practice to check these components for vulnerabilities during your regular check. The serious vulnerabilities bucket list will include components that contain both company and customer information. In this blog, we will find out more about web application security and the top 15 practices that you can follow to make your web application more secure.

It puts up strong resistance against XSS attacks, SQL injections, Distributed Denial-of-Service attacks, etc. You can use database libraries with an additional layer of encryption to store data. This document should include details of the components, the version, usage, as well as access details.


This security risk arises when web apps use weak cryptographic algorithms such as SHA-1 or RIPEMD160. Particularly, such functions inadequately protect unauthorized users from accessing or destroying sensitive data in transmission and at rest. It’s also dangerous, as vulnerabilities can linger in production for months, exposing the organization to attacks until the next testing and remediation pass. While you can always monitor employees, it’s more effective to prevent a security breach than to hastily search for the cause after an incident has occurred.

So, this intervention can lead to data loss or severe changes in the database structure. The secure web application is the one that will be able to work as expected despite all attacks and still keep all data safe. Although the app can protect itself somehow, we also need some additional tools to keep it safe and protect it from attacks. Bad security mechanisms also can affect all other major application things like availability.

Web application security is a critical piece of security for organizations of all sizes to invest in, but all the more so for customer facing web apps. Here is a list of web application security best practices that organizations can follow to minimize disruption and stay one step ahead of attacks on web applications. However, it is advised that organizations conduct their own research to ensure the practices are fit for their unique business needs and context. There are many aspects of web security and no single tool can be perceived as the only measure that will guarantee complete safety. The key tool for web application security is the vulnerability scanner.

Final Thoughts on Web Application Security Best Practices

You may strengthen such perception by publicly disclosing bounty program payoffs and responsibly sharing information about any security vulnerability discoveries and data breaches. One of the best ways to check if your sensitive information is safe is to perform mock attacks. This is the key assumption behind penetration testing but penetration tests are just spot-checks. To fully and continuously evaluate your security stance, the best way is to perform continuous security exercises such asred team vs. blue teamcampaigns. The current best practice for building secure software is calledSecDevOps.

  • These fake accounts can be used to cover up credential stuffing practices, take advantage of customer offers, or authenticate stolen credit cards.
  • Companies tend to store even sensitive data on the cloud because it’s convenient and low-cost.
  • That’s because it’s not just about adding in a few lines of code or checking in some new features—it’s about taking a step back and looking at your application.
  • However, as most APIs are third-party software solutions, they can make your application vulnerable.
  • The attack may happen due to default passwords, malicious libraries, or the existence of unnecessary components in the program.

This is the time where all the big vulnerabilities like SQL injections, XSS, and local file inclusion attacks emerged. Finally, going back to OWASP’s inclusion of insecure design as a security weakness, your software teams need to consider security in everything they do and plan. Any web app development services should include security strategy and regular security checks during and after development along with other best practices of web security. It’s easy to think of security as something that you can purchase, but the truth is that it’s not a thing. You can do many things to secure your application from threats, and some of those things don’t come in a single package.

Coding errors can lead to security issues

So, hackers can steal your session credentials, break your application, or steal data. As we mentioned above, web threats are constantly changing, so staying on top of them is vital. One of the most important and valuable statistics for us is OWASP’s top 10 web application security risks. The growing cyberscape has brought with it a whole range of risks and cyber threats. It can be difficult to manually check all components for vulnerabilities and fix them. The server is another vulnerable component of your website application.

WhiteSource, said companies these days rely on countless dependencies, and that can cause problems if even a couple have security flaws or are not current with the latest patch. “People treating APIs and microservices as an implementation detail,” can be dangerous, Sotnikov said. Because web applications can be accessed from anywhere, they are possible targets for anyone in the world. And the sheer number of things that can go wrong can make it difficult to know where to start when thinking about securing a web application.

While developing the app, you should ensure that the super administrator is able to define the permissions and access provided to the stakeholders, users, or clients. Also, regularly check the access list to ensure that no one is misusing their permissions. Before we go into details about the best security practices, let’s understand more about web application security. The security features form the central component around which the other attributes of the website are built. Implementing network firewalls to ensure relevant protection against threats from within the network.

Security Misconfiguration

That is why it is highly recommended to carry out web application security tests during the SDLC stages, not after the web application has been launched. Web application vulnerabilities allow bad actors to gain unauthorized control over the source code, manipulate private information, or disrupt the application’s regular operation. We can protect your clients from attacks by keeping them safe from malicious actors on the internet. That’s because it’s not just about adding in a few lines of code or checking in some new features—it’s about taking a step back and looking at your application.

What is web application security?

For example, a lot of data flows into the system everyday by way of web forms or other data collection windows and touchpoints. It is important to ensure that such inbound data is free of any command that can carry out XSS or SQL injection attacks. This stage is about addressing the identified vulnerabilities and making changes as per the remediation guidelines. The organization must assign developers to fix vulnerabilities and run further black-box tests since several issues of a similar nature could exist in other parts or components of the system. The purpose behind this first step is to prioritize different components that need to be tested. In some scenarios, not all components may be required to be tested, and in others, a more comprehensive, integrated approach may be needed.

Apart from protecting web applications, Barracuda also provides solutions for securing your email, data, and network. In addition, keep track of and prevent the use of stolen or exposed credentials that could give attackers access to your account. Cloudflare’s services also include a web application firewall and DDoS protection. Another high-risk web application vulnerability is security misconfiguration, which allows attackers to easily take control of websites.

Missing Function Level Access Control

Malicious attackers can take advantage of a wide range of weaknesses and configuration errors, including unused pages, unpatched vulnerabilities, unsecured files and directories, and default settings. You do not need to be an expert or deeply understand the frameworks or libraries used. For example, if you’re sending an email with sensitive information in it, and the email gets sent to someone who doesn’t need to see it, that’s an example of sensitive data exposure. Sensitive data can also be exposed when poorly coded applications allow malicious users to access or modify sensitive data. Imagine you’re the administrator of a website that allows users to register new accounts.

You can also read about any new vulnerabilities or exploits discovered recently. When a company does not have web application security, it can cost them money and business. Web application security is there to protect your information from being breached. A breach of the information could result in financial Loss or Loss of customers.

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