Top 5 Most Common Application Vulnerabilities in the UK>
The most common application vulnerabilities will come as no surprise to cyber security experts. If we know about them, why do they persist?
Applications are complex and are often first designed to be functional and launched to a deadline. This puts pressure on developers and it's easy to introduce vulnerabilities. The complexity of applications and infrastructure continues to increase again leading to a challenge for developers to stay on top of security best practices. Introducing the right controls, tools, and processes to help developers release code quickly and securely is crucial to reduce the chance of introducing vulnerabilities. An SDLC (Software Development Life Cycle) needs to be backed with training so that it becomes part of developer's day to day work which will lead to a frictionless secure development strategy.
The top 5 web application vulnerabilities in the UK
A worrying 60% of all web app vulnerabilities in the UK are classified as critical or high risk. Even more shockingly, the likelihood of these being exploited is 1 in 3. These numbers are hard to ignore and when you factor in the ease of resolving these business-critical issues, it seems logical to ensure the proper measures are in place to safeguard your business.
Web application vulnerabilities in the UK data
Cross-Site Scripting (XSS) is an attack whereby scripts, known as client-side scripts, are introduced by attackers that can affect the users visiting your applications. This unauthorised data can be leveraged to attack other users of your web application.
XSS attacks include accessing sensitive application data, logging user keystrokes or obtaining user passwords stored in the browser. When combined with other attacks, such as cross-site request forgery (CSRF), XSS can be used to perform privileged state-changing actions within the application, such as forcing a user to change their email address, potentially resulting in account compromise, denial of service or even information disclosure.
Improper access controls arise when an application’s security access is not fit for purpose. Failing to enforce restrictions can have devastating consequences. Access control issues can allow a malicious user to create highly privileged accounts, gain control of a user base and relay data.
3. Vulnerable and Outdated Components
This might be the most basic vulnerability on this list and the easiest to avoid. Vulnerable and outdated components are a treasure trove for cyber criminals.
Cross-Site Request Forgery (CSRF) is a session riding vulnerability whereby a target user is tricked into executing unwanted commands via a web application in which they’re already authenticated. Browser requests include all cookies in CSRF attacks and because of this, if the user is authenticated to the site, it cannot determine the difference between real and forged requests.
SQL Injection (SQLi) is a web security vulnerability that has been around for years and is regularly at the top of the application vulnerability list. It allows an attacker to access the database by sending specially crafted SQL queries.
How to prevent the exploitation of these web application vulnerabilities
Regular penetration testing is the primary way you can safeguard your organisation. Resilient cyber security relies on regular testing to check your security perimeters and the status of your components. At Bulletproof, our CREST certified penetration testers are experts in web applications and are there to advise you every step of the way.
We know how to bulletproof an organisation and provide a detailed report after each application penetration test so you can see what you’re doing well and where you need to implement critical remediation.
Defending against potential threats to your organisation's cyber security could be the difference between maintaining a safe and secure working environment or facing ongoing threats which compromise the sensitive and critical data of your entire workforce. Prevention is critical. Penetration testing could save you time, money and your reputation.
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