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Major issues you should be worried about here are weak password policies and a weak user registration process. You should also test role definitions and account registration processes. Try to circumvent the application to find out whether identity requirements for user registration align with business and security requirements. If this option does exist, check whether a user has any chance to log in using the deactivated account. Authentication requires proper security testing to ensure that malicious attackers have no chance to gain access to the application.

Another critical test is concerned with bypassing authentication schemas , which can be tricked into thinking that a user is already authenticated. A comprehensive understanding of the way the authentication process works is extremely important for performing tests that try to circumvent it.

Web Application Security and You: Intro to OWASP and Penetration Testing w/ Micah Hausler

For instance, a tester should know all aspects of lockout mechanisms to make sure they function correctly. Lockout mechanisms have to balance guarding accounts from hackers and protecting users from being denied authorized access. If the application has no protection mechanisms from brute force attacks, you can skip checking lockout mechanism performance but should mark this test as failed. Other important tests that have to be performed when checking the authentication mechanism include:.


  • Put your defenses to the test with authentic attacks.
  • 1.2 About The Open Web Application Security Project;
  • OWASP Testing Methodology.

When testing a web application for weak password change or reset functionalities , check that:. A test for resilience to password guessing is used to check how the web application is secured from brute force attacks. Authorization usually comes right after successful authentication, and the tester will verify this after he holds valid credentials associated with a well-defined set of roles and privileges. Pay attention to path traversal vulnerabilities with well-known dot-dot-slash attacks.

Testing for path traversal vulnerabilities can take a lot of time and produce a lot of requests to the target server. Test the bypass authorization schema , by calling an internal page and skipping the login page or making the application think the user is already authorized. Try to find any ways to change the roles or privileges assigned to a user in order to achieve privilege escalation. Find a way to leave insecure direct object references. When conducting this test, the first thing to do is to map out all locations within the application that allow user inputs to be used to directly reference objects.

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Consider using the Autorize plugin for the last three tests to save time. Read also: Mobile App Security Testing. Session management is one of the core components of any web application, as it covers everything from the moment users authenticate until they log out. Your goal is to trick an application to give you access to a user account without providing the correct credentials. This can be possible because of the various mechanisms the application uses to store and validate credentials for a better user experience. To define major application security flaws and prevent session hijacking, you also have to include the following OWASP tests into your web application testing checklist:.

When conducting security testing for session management, understanding the ground rules of application performance is key to choosing the right tests and interpreting their results correctly.

About OWASP

Browsers, websites, and web applications use HTTP for communication. Since HTTP is a stateless protocol, each command runs independently without knowing previous commands.

This means that web servers respond to client requests without linking them to each other. Meanwhile, even simple application logic requires multiple requests to be associated across a session. Commonly used web application environments like ASP and PHP provide developers with built-in session handling routines.

These routines allow for issuing identification tokens to identify a user that has logged in. These tokens are assigned to a specific user for the duration of a session and are referred to as a Session ID or cookie. Applications can interact with users in different ways depending on the nature of the site, and the security, and the availability requirements of the application. Using accepted best practices for application development for example, the OWASP Developer Guide is essential for engineering secure software. Failure to properly validate input data that comes from the client or from the environment before using this data is a common weakness of web applications.

Using these vulnerabilities, cybercriminals can tamper with data from an external entity or client. This is why data from clients and form the environment should never be trusted. The point is that complex applications tend to have numerous entry points, which makes it hard for developers to follow the rule. When testing the design and architecture, pay attention to the location of data validation within the application.

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This way, you can fix input validation in just one place instead of hundreds of places. A good way to optimize the process of testing for reflected and stored cross-site scripting is to use XSS polyglots, special payloads that can pass lots of filters simultaneously. Another critical test is checking for format string vulnerabilities. Error handling is crucial for proper web application performance and security.

It can allow information disclosure thanks to informative error messages and stack traces. Improper error handling may provide cyber criminals with enough information to launch an attack. Flaws can provide attackers with clues on how the application operates, how to exploit it, how to expose sensitive data, and more. Error messages can unveil the inner structure of a web application, so you have to analyze their content. Your two must-have security tests for error handling are analysis of error codes and analysis of stack traces.

Cryptography is vital for web applications. The absence of encryption when transferring data between a client and a server makes it possible for hackers to arrange man-in-the-middle MITM attacks. The OWASP Testing Guide v4 highlights three major issues for security testing that definitely should be added to the every checklist for web application penetration testing:.

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However, vulnerability scan can only detect already known vulnerabilities, rather than discovering latest security issues and providing patch suggestions. Penetration testing relies on experienced information security experts to do it manually. Throughout the testing process, different security loopholes will be combined into attack chains by the experts, and carry out persistent attacks to verify whether there's any method to break the website's defenses available.


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Depending on the scale and complexity of the organization's systems, a single website takes about a month to go through the whole process, from preliminary test, remediation, to advanced test. Compared with automated testing, manual testing offers benefits including higher testing accuracy, greater depth of inspection, capability of distinguishing business logic flaws, etc.

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Penetration Test | DEVCORE

To prevent from disturbing the organization's regular operations, DEVCORE does not incorporate social engineering and DDoS attacks in the testing, unless specifically requested by the consignor. Information security experts at DEVCORE operates with the highest standards of ethics and compliance, and will NOT disclose any information obtained during testing to any third-party individual or entity. Moreover, during the testing process, information will be exchanged with strong password encryption to ensure security and confidentiality.

Hacker attacks are constantly evolving threats. Even a website kept unaltered without any minor modification can be intruded with new attack vectors in the future. Additionally, most business websites must develop new features. Therefore, we suggest organizations to regularly do penetration testing each year. According to Taiwan Financial Supervisory Commission, banking system websites should perform two penetration testing each year, and regular organization websites or networking services should perform penetration testing at least once annually.

Penetration testing involves in accessing an organization's sensitive information and must be legally authorized beforehand. Currently there are no rules or regulations governing such services and their providers. However, before purchasing a penetration testing service, we suggest you to make sure whether the vendor is capable of providing high quality services.