Application Security Best Practices Developers Need To Know

Table of Contents

In today’s world, almost everything we do is online. We shop online, bank online, socialize online and even date online. While this makes our lives easier in many ways, it also exposes us to new risks. One of the most critical but often overlooked aspects of online security is application security posture.

Developers need to know the best practices for securing their applications so their users can safely transact business and share information. This blog post will discuss some of the most crucial application security best practices developers need to know.

OWASP top ten

OWASP is a project that helps developers identify and prevent common security vulnerabilities. They published their top ten list for 2019, which includes some interesting statistics on how many times these flaws were exploited in the past year alone.

For example, one type of attack was ranked fourth ( Morales) because it uses social engineering techniques like phishing emails to trick people into giving up personal information such as passwords.

While another (#1) involves attacking web applications by infecting them with malware through malicious files uploaded onto hosting servers, something we all know happens quite often nowadays thanks primarily to this type of attack.

Overall, this is an excellent resource for anyone who works with software and needs to remain up-to-date on current app security trends. Check out their website today if you’d like to learn more about the OWASP top ten list for 2019.

Application security development

The development of application security is necessary to make your applications more protected by locating and repairing any vulnerabilities.

This often happens through software testing tools, which help enforce best practices for developing secure apps in general and provide insight into how they work on a deeper level than ever before. Hence, you know what areas need improvement or correction when it comes time to fix any bugs or vulnerabilities you find.

Dynamic application security testing vs. interactive application security testing

A combination of tools, such as SAST and DAST, often handles the application security testing procedure. AST verifies the safety from potential threats in source code by looking for vulnerabilities that could be used for malicious purposes like hacking or cracking passwords

Security Testing must always occur before deployment, so no one has time to exploit your app’s mistakes!

There are two main application security testing tools: static application security testing (SAST) and dynamic application security testing (DAST). AST is an integral part of securing applications from security flaws and threats. It allows developers and organizations to identify potential vulnerabilities in their source code before it is released into production.

SAST tools analyze the code in a static or non-runtime environment. They typically work by scanning the source code for potential weaknesses and vulnerabilities and providing detailed reports on their findings. Some standard SAST tools include Fortify, Coverity, Checkmarx, and IBM AppScan.

DAST application security tools analyze an application running live in a production environment. They can identify security issues at runtime and provide reports on those findings. Some standard DAST tools include Black Duck, Veracode, Checkmarx, and IBM AppScan Dynamic Analysis.

While both SAST and DAST tools have their advantages regarding AST, many organizations use a combination of both to ensure that their applications are as secure as possible. Ultimately, AST is critical in ensuring that your applications remain safe from security threats and vulnerabilities and should be considered by all developers and organizations.

Best practices for web application security

Apply secure coding standards

Secure coding standards assist in ensuring your software is protected against security vulnerabilities. The basic secure coding standard for application development are OWASP and CERT, including the Top 10 from each list.

An automated tool such as SAST can analyze code with ease when identifying potential issues, which makes addressing them more manageable than ever before as well because you don’t need any technical knowledge or experience to apply these fixes right away (and without needing people who know how every part works).

Executing a threat assessment

This is the first step in securing your application. A threat assessment allows you to determine all potential vulnerabilities that could be manipulated, which helps organize where weaknesses are and how best to address them accordingly with appropriate measures for protection against outside attacks like hacking or cracking passwords, etcetera.

This white paper describes the steps involved with a threat assessment and how to use the information from selecting the appropriate security controls for your application.

Security is becoming increasingly important as most modern applications now contain sensitive personal user data like addresses and contact information, financial details about customers and their accounts, or corporate information like trade secrets and intellectual property.

Unfortunately, security is often an afterthought during the development of applications, meaning that many significant vulnerabilities may go undetected until it’s too late and attackers have gained unauthorized access to sensitive data.

Security vulnerabilities scan

By examining your code, you can detect any coding mistakes or vulnerabilities before they harm the integrity of an application. This usually includes automated inspections with tools like SAST that look for these issues automatically and give developers early warning about what might be coming their way so that it’s easier to fix things quickly when problems arise.

Application security Test 

DAST is a powerful tool that can help you identify any vulnerabilities in your application before they become an issue.

Dast will run security tests on the whole system environment, including checks for SQL injections and cross-site request attacks; this ensures there’s no gap where malware could enter unnoticed. Best of all, DAST is easy to use and can run in almost any environment through automated testing.

Scan the development of your application security strategy

Tracking vulnerabilities is essential for understanding your application’s security. This way, you can see if any new holes have been found and what steps need to be taken to protect yourself from potential hackers.

Require injection and input validation

Once the input variables are correctly formatted, you can be more confident about what’s entering your system. For example, if an employee enters their time on the clock in minutes instead of hours and seconds, it would fail validation since one can only divide by ten if knowing how many days they work there.

This is a straightforward way to avoid sudden malfunctions when processing large amounts of data. If you still need to, consider the input validation for your system to prevent such issues.

Input validation ensures that your system processes data accurately and efficiently. By validating the inputs before they are processed, you can reduce the risk of errors or other issues that could cause problems down the line.

Encrypt your data

Encryption is the process of encoding information to protect it from unauthorized access. Encrypted data cannot be read by anyone except authorized, which makes this security measure critical in protecting sensitive enterprise data across transit or storage platforms like databases.

We also recommend implementing authentication plans for entities accessing these services as well. When using Web Services and APIs, you should ensure that any requests made via your program have been encrypted with a robust algorithm, so they’re utterly unseen by outsiders wishing them harm.

Encryption is a process that uses an algorithm to transform cleartext messages into unintelligible text. There are several encryption algorithms available to choose from, including AES (Advanced Encryption Standard), RSA (Rivest-Shamir-Alde-man)

Use exception management

Security is important. When you fail in it, it’s best to let the end user know what went wrong so they can take action themselves or seek help from authorities if necessary.

Ensure your exception messages are helpful rather than harmful by including only generic information in case of failures without providing attacker details like access keys etc., which could be used for future attacks on other systems with similar weaknesses and vulnerabilities.

One of the main reasons that security is so important is that it helps to ensure that your system continues to function correctly and reliably, even in cases where things go wrong. When an error occurs, it’s essential to provide insight into what went wrong so that users can take action themselves or seek outside help.

Apply authentication

Web apps are prone to attacks by default, so one of the most important things you can do for your users is to give them as few privileges and access rights as possible. This will reduce their chances of being hacked or crashing an entire system with malicious intent, which would affect other apps running on that same platform.

Avoid security misconfigurations

Given the endless options that contemporary web server management software provides, creating an unprofessional and chaotic website environment is easy.

The key is in having well-documented processes for both setting up new websites as well updating old ones so they can be managed efficiently while also being secure from hackers who might try accessing your site through vulnerabilities on either end, such as outdated security team protocols or certificates which may have expired due their terms being reached by now.

Include auditing and logging

There’s no need to look through verbose error logs when Activity or Audit Logging is already integrated into your Windows Server 2003 or 2008 web server software. By reviewing application activity information, you can pinpoint unwanted activities and track users’ actions on the fly without having to keep meticulous tabs at the code level, which could take hours per day.

Conclusion

So, there you have it. Developments need to know application security best practices to create more secure software. While this is far from an exhaustive list, it should give you a good starting point for making your applications more secure.

Be sure to check our website regularly for more information on application security and other important topics related to digital marketing. And as always, feel free to reach out if you have any questions or comments. Thanks for reading.

Share this article on social media:

Subscribe to Our Newsletter!
Stay on top of cybersecurity risks, evolving threats and industry news.

Recent Blog Posts

Categories

Featured Services

The Latest Blog Articles From Vumetric

From industry trends,  to recommended best practices, read it here first:

Tell us about your needs.
Get an answer the same business day.

Tell us about your needs.
Get an answer the same business day.

Fill out the form below and get an answer from our experts within 1 business day.

Got an urgent request? Call us at 1-877-805-7475 or Book a meeting.

PCI-DSS

What happens next:

  • We reach out to learn about your objectives
  • We work together to define your project's scope
  • You get an all-inclusive, no engagement proposal

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Scroll to Top

BOOK A MEETING

Enter Your
Corporate Email

This site is registered on wpml.org as a development site.