The websites and web applications are mission-critical business systems that must operate without security problems to process corporate confidential information. And to respect data protection rules, companies must consider web application security testing services. There are statistical evidences supported by web application security companies which present that in countries like Mexico, Brazil, United States, Colombia, Costa Rica, Argentina, UAE, and India; two out of three companies face web application security problems & risks.
Web application security testing consultants classify web application security risks by the type of attack. Using the type of attack as a base is the most common method used by many web application security companies. The web application security risk classification is very useful and is of exceptional value to application developers, business executives, security professionals or any other entity interested in website penetration testing. IT professionals working in this field typically learn about IT risk, application layer attacks, website penetration testing, web security via web application security training courses. In countries like Mexico, Brazil, United States, Colombia, Costa Rica, Argentina, UAE, India etc, there are several web application security companies that provide web application security training courses. However business professionals must take that web application security training course that teaches independent methodologies for security review, secure programming guidelines, international standards, website penetration testing, exploiting methods, and application-level attacks.
Below are some of the attacks that affect the web application security:
Brute Force is an automated trial and error attack, used to guess the values (user, password etc.) of the parameters of the web application/website. Usually people use weak passwords or cryptographic keys that are easy to guess. Hackers exploit this security vulnerability in website using a dictionary. Hackers loop through whole dictionary one by one, searching for the valid password. According to web application security testing services, the brute force attack is very popular and can take hours, weeks or years to complete. With the help of web application security testing companies can easily detect vulnerabilities related to brute force
Incomplete authentication & Weak validation
Incomplete authentication is an attack, when a hacker accesses some confidential functionality of an application without complete authentication. In this attack a hacker could discover specific URL of the confidential functionality via brute forcing through common files and directory locations (/admin), error messages etc. Normally, many applications are not secure as they use conventional techniques of web application security testing. In the scenario of weak validation, the attacker can obtain, modify or retrieve data or passwords of other users. This occurs when the information required to validate the identity of users, is predictable and can be easily falsified. According to web application security company’s consultants, the process of data validation is an important part of the applications and businesses should implement web application security testing services. With the help of web application security testing companies can easily detect vulnerabilities related to incomplete authentication and weak validation.
Insufficient authorization means that a user has access to confidential parts of the application/website that should require elevated access control restrictions. Without any website security & website penetration testing measures, the attack of insufficient authorization could be very damaging. In the attack of insufficient authorization, an authenticated user could control the entire application or content of the website. As per the recommendations of web application security training course, applications should have access policies, modification policies and prudent restrictions should guide the user activity within the application.
In session hijacking attack a hacker could deduce or guess the session ID value and then can use that value to hijack another user’s session. If a hacker is able to guess the session ID of another user, fraudulent activity is possible. This could allow a hacker to use the back button of the browser to access the pages previously accessed by the victim. Many companies without any website security & website penetration testing measures are susceptible to this attack. For this reason website & web application security are very important.
Another problem for web application security is incomplete session expire as per web application security company’s experts. This results when a website allows reuse of old session credentials. The incomplete expiration of session increases the exposure of websites to hackers for stealing or hijacking session.
The session fixation is another technique used for session hijacking as per web application security company’s experts. When a user’s session ID is forced to an explicit value, the hacker can exploit this to hijack the session. Later when the user session ID has been fixed, the hacker waits for user to use it. When the user does so, the hacker uses this session ID value for session hijacking. The web pages that use cookie-based sessions without any web application security testing services are the easiest to attack.
Without any web application security testing services or web application security solutions to prevent session hijacking, this attack could do a lot of damage to business reputation and hackers can steal confidential data. As per the recommendations of web application security training course, logic for generating session ID, cookie and each session ID should be kept confidential. Companies can also easily learn more about best practices to prevent session hijacking & secure application programming during a web application security training course.
When a user visits a website, the user expects security on the website and that the website will deliver valid content. Cross-site Scripting (XSS) is an attack where the victim is the user. In the XSS attack, the hacker forces a website to execute a code in the user’s browser. With this code the hacker has the ability to read, modify and transmit confidential data accessible by the browser. Without any web application security testing services, a hacker could steal cookies, hijack sessions, open phishing sites, and download malware using the XSS attack. According to website penetration testing experts, there are two types of XSS attacks, persistent and non-persistent. Both attacks can cause a lot of damage to the reputation of the website. Using website security solutions such as website penetration testing or web application security training course, companies can easily understand, detect and resolve vulnerabilities related to cross-site scripting (XSS).
Cross Site Request Forgery (CSRF)
The cross site request forgery (CSRF), also known as XSRF is an attack where the hacker can get the user to perform unwanted actions on remote domains. It is based on the idea of exploiting the persistence of sessions between browser tabs. Typically, most users do not terminate their website sessions and remain active while browsing other websites. By exploiting the vulnerability of XSRF a hacker can steal other website sessions. According to website penetration testing experts, Cross Site Request Forgery (CSRF) attack is derived from XSS and with some basic website penetration testing companies can prevent CSRF attacks.
The buffer overflow is a very common vulnerability in different softwares, which is when the data written to memory exceeds the reserved buffer size. According to experts from web application security company, during a buffer overflow attack the attacker exploits the vulnerability to alter the flow of an application and redirect the program to execute malicious code. According to professor of web application security training course, this vulnerability is very common at the operating system level of the application server and can be detected during the web server & web application security testing.
The SQL injection is a very common and dangerous attack. Many companies with no web application security testing procedures are susceptible to this attack. This attack exploits the websites that use SQL as a database and construct SQL statements from user-supplied data. During the SQL injection attack, the hacker can easily modify an SQL statement and by exploiting this vulnerability, the hacker can gain full control over the database or even execute commands on the system. According to the experience of the web application security testing services, companies can prevent SQL injection by sanitizing data provided by the user. Also companies can easily detect and resolve this vulnerability with the help of web application security testing.
In the directory indexing attack, an attacker can access all files in the directories on the server. Without any website security, this is equivalent to running a command “ls” or “dir” and showing the results in HTML format. The information in a directory may contain information that is not expected to be seen in public. In addition, a hacker can find confidential information in HTML comments, error messages and source code. According to the experience of consultants of web application security company, directory indexing can allow data leakage which can provide data to a hacker to launch an advance attack.
In the Path Traversal attack, a hacker access files, directories, and commands that reside outside the “root” directory of the website. Many companies without any web application security testing services are susceptible to this attack. With access to these directories, an attacker could have access to the important web application executables that perform important functions and access to confidential information of users. In the path traversal attack a hacker can manipulate a URL so that the website will run or disclose the contents of files located anywhere on the web server. Using website security solutions such as website penetration testing or web application security training course, companies can easily understand, detect and resolve vulnerabilities related to Path Traversal.
Denial of Service
In a denial-of-service attack (DoS), the motive is to prevent a website/web application to function normally and serve normal user activity. DoS attacks try to utilize all available resources such as CPU, memory, disk space, bandwidth, etc. When these resources reach their maximum consumption, the web application will be inaccessible. According to experts of web application security testing services there are different types of DoS attacks, such as network level, the device level, application level and from different sources (DDoS). Using website security solutions such as website penetration testing or web application security training course, companies can easily understand, detect and resolve vulnerabilities related to denial of service.
These are some of the cyber attacks on web applications. Web application security testing services and web application security training course should help to identify and resolve risks associated with web applications in your organization. The web application security methodology should be very different from traditional methodology of web application security companies. The web application security methodology should be based on a process of manual and automated testing using our own scripts, code review, proprietary, commercial and open source tools that identifies all types of vulnerabilities.
Information security specialist, currently working as risk infrastructure specialist & investigator.
15 years of experience in risk and control process, security audit support, business continuity design and support, workgroup management and information security standards.