Securing the applications on our computing devices like our phones, tablets, and laptops, is important because we need some form of protection against unauthorized access to our data that is stored and processed by these applications.
To answer the question “what is application security and why is it important”, we’ll define first what a web application is and later enumerate some of the web application security risks.
To make it short, a web app or application is a program that utilizes internet technology. Here is an image to illustrate this concept:
A web application is one of the most commonly used apps out there that uses the internet as its medium. Examples of web applications are:
- Google Docs
- Google Mail
- Microsoft OneDrive
- Google Sheets
As you can see from our examples that these are really very useful web apps. These web applications can store valuable data. If online data storage is involved, then it also presents some risks as shown below:
- Man in the Browser Attack (MITB) - the attacker here gets all the information coming from your end over the internet aka sniffing.
- DDoS (Distributed Denial-of-Service) attack - the attacker disrupts the normal flow of web traffic in order to deny a certain computer the resources it needs resulting in a crash or forced reboot.
- Buffer Overflow - the attacker here exploits the limitation of computer memory in holding certain amounts of data by writing more data that it can actually hold. This attack results in a crash as well and modifies the variables involved here.
These attacks can result in the loss and theft of data and denial of access to computer resources. Now you know why securing an application from these attacks is important. We’ve tackled about what is application security and its importance. In the next section, we’ll be discussing briefly the types of web application security testing.
What Is Application Security Testing?
Web-based apps are helpful in a lot of ways. Here are some of the benefits:
- Online banking - we can transfer funds, make a deposit or withdrawal, and even pay our bills all at the comfort of our home.
- Online shopping - we can enjoy shopping and have our items shipped to our mailing address.
- Online communication - we can send emails and chat with our friends and relatives without being near them.
These advantages of using web-based apps have also sparked the interest of cybercriminals. To better educate ourselves on what is application security, we need to do some security testing on our apps to avoid a possible breach. Below are the 3 three types of Web Application Security Testing:
- 1. Dynamic Application Security Testing aka DAST - this process looks for vulnerabilities in an application that a possible attacker could take advantage of.
- 2. Static Application Security Testing aka SAST - this process looks for coding errors that could be exploited on the source code of the app itself.
- 3. Application Penetration Testing - a cybersecurity expert or professional will try to simulate the attack on the app and provide feedback at the end of the process.
Using the 3 types of application security testing will surely make your app protected. This concludes our topic for this section on what is application security testing.
Conclusion on the Topic What Is Application Security
We’ve already defined and discussed what is application security. We’ve talked about its importance as well. Lastly, we’ve covered briefly the topic on what is application security testing as well. A good way to secure your app from any threat is to make use of an all-in-one security application.
A good product has the following features:
- Cloud scanning
- Protection from cyber attacks
- Protection from zero-day exploits
- Anti SSL sniffing
To know more about what is application security and the right product for you, visit this link.