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The most common security risks in web development

The most common security risks in web development
Photo by Markus Spiske / Unsplash

What is Cybersecurity?

Cybersecurity is the protection of connected systems on the internet. This includes software, hardware, and data that come from cyber threats. Cybersecurity protects these systems from malicious hackers who will attempt to infiltrate these systems in a multitude of ways.

So, what are the most common web application security risks?

- SQL Injection

- Login/password theft

- Leak of sensitive data

- XSS attacks

- Not monitoring and logging

- Misconfiguration of security settings

- CSRF attacks

- Using components that have vulnerabilities

- Exposure of information through query strings in the URL

- Web application design flaws

SQL Injection:

SQL injection is a web security vulnerability wherein an attacker attacks data-specific applications, where dangerous SQL statements are injected into a data field.

Login/password theft:

Login/password theft is when hackers try to steal your login credentials. This can be done through various techniques, such as phishing, brute force attacks, and many more attacks.

Leak of sensitive data:

This is when data that is considered sensitive is accidentally leaked/exposed. This can occur due to various reasons, such as not encrypting data and not evaluating user permissions.

XSS attacks:

XSS is also known as Cross-Site Scripting attacks. This is when a user injects malicious code into a script.

Not monitoring and logging:

A common problem when deploying a web application is insufficient monitoring and logging. It’s important that users check their servers and website administration section on a regular basis to check if there are any problems.

Misconfiguration of security settings:

When deploying a website, it is important that security settings are configured properly, if not then this may leave your website at great risk. Such security settings may include HTTP headers and verbose error messages.

CSRF attacks (Cross-Site Request Forgery):

A CSRF attack is an attack that forces the user to carry out unwanted and unexpected actions on the website on which they are currently authenticated.

Using components that have vulnerabilities:

It is common for developers to install packages into their applications that perform a certain action, but many of these packages are not regularly maintained which may lead to unexpected vulnerabilities in the source code.

Exposure of information through query strings in the URL:

Information can be exposed in the query strings in the URL, this isn’t a problem if the data in these strings are generic numbers or random strings, but if it contains passwords or emails, this may lead to problems down the road.

Web application design flaws:

This security flaw is generic and depends on how well the developer designs the website. If for example, the developer doesn’t follow the best practices when it comes to security, chances are the web application will be hacked, however, if the appropriate steps are taken then the website will be more secure and will not face as many issues long term, as opposed to doing nothing.