Effective Application Security Testing: Types and Tools

Are you aware of the staggering value that cybercriminals place on a single credit card’s information in the underground market?

According to Forbes, it can fetch up to $45, making it an immensely profitable target for hackers. These cybercriminals utilize various methods, such as phishing, malware attacks, and system vulnerability exploitation, to acquire valuable data.

Furthermore, Forbes estimates that external attackers breach an organization’s network perimeter a staggering 93 percent of the time. Therefore, safeguarding customer data is of utmost importance for any organization.

In this article, we will explore the top security testing applications and tools that can help organizations protect their systems from malicious activities.

What is application security testing?

Application security testing is performed to ensure that the application is free of any dangers, threats, or vulnerabilities in the source code. It is an integral part of the testing process and can be done in a variety of ways, depending on the application’s needs and requirements.

We’ll go over everything in depth later, but first, let’s discuss why application security testing is crucial.

Why is application security testing necessary?

Data is an organization’s most valuable asset. If sensitive data is released, it can be exploited for various purposes. Therefore, an organization’s IT network’s risk level should be taken into account when constructing the application’s security.

Application security testing can be done in two ways, either manually or by automation. It encounters faults and threats in applications, identifies weaknesses that hackers can exploit, and ensures that the organization’s data is kept safe.

The following are some of the advantages that security testing can provide:

  • Keeps data, history, and servers safe
  • Maintains the client’s trust
  • Protects the program against hacks or virus infections

Types of application security testing

1. Software composition analysis (SCA) –

The SCA tool assists in the detection of vulnerabilities in the application’s standard components and libraries. It helps in finding the outdated components of the application and provides easy solutions to remediate the weaknesses.

The CVE (common vulnerabilities and exposures) database is used by the majority of SCA. It primarily uses byte code, source code, binary code, or any mix of the three.

2. Dynamic application security testing (DAST) –

When it comes to dynamic application security testing, the black box approach is used. In this, the tester does not know the software architecture and while the application is running, they test its functionality and look for security flaws.

DAST tools run thorough scans that recreate a plethora of unexpected or malicious test cases and generate information on the application’s response. It detects issues with the application’s UI, response, scripts, authentication, memory leakage, authentication, and other aspects.

3. Static application security testing (SAST) –

Static application security testing is the absolute opposite of DAST testing. It uses the white box approach in which the tester is familiar with the software architecture, including all data, sources, and diagrams. SAST tools analyze the source code to uncover and report weaknesses that may cause security vulnerabilities.

Code testing enables the detection of numeric mistakes, pointers, and references in non-compiled code.

4. Interactive application security testing (IAST) and hybrid tool –

IAST tools are a combination of SAST and DAST. It helps enable a static and dynamic analysis in which various attack scenarios are created for testing. The objective of the attack scenarios is to have a better understanding of the application and how it reacts to the test settings.

Furthermore, it investigates critical insights into the root cause of vulnerabilities and the specific code lines that demand attention, thus, rectifying the issue becomes more straightforward.

5. Mobile application security testing (MAST) –

MAST is a forensic analysis system that combines dynamic, static, and forensic analysis. It primarily performs the same responsibilities, but it also runs mobile codes as part of the analysis. It checks for things like jailbreaking, a faulty WiFi connection, and data leaking in mobile apps.

6. Application security testing orchestration –

Gartner  released application security testing orchestration as a new security testing application in 2017. It works on the security tool as part of the software development lifecycle. It integrates the data and information into a single location, streamlines the management process, and provides better visibility into potential issues and security vulnerabilities.

7. Database security scanning –

A database is a crucial component of an application and an organization as every aspect of the application is stored in the database. Therefore, maintaining database security measures is critical for developers.

New updates, weak passwords, configuration issues, and the access control list are all scanned for database security.

Tools for security testing

Zed Attack Proxy (ZAP) –

It is open-source security software that helps find vulnerabilities in the application. Important features of ZAP:

  • Automated scanner
  • Multi-platform
  • Easy to use
  • Passive scanner

Wfuzz –

Wfuzz is developed using Python programming language and helps find hidden folders and files.

Wapiti –

Wapiti is the most often used security testing tool. It determines whether the script contains any flaws and has a simple UI with assault models that can be engaged and deleted with ease.

Conclusion

Application security testing enables you to protect your application from any kind of vulnerability and helps build high-level security trust between the client and the organization.

If you are looking for strong security integration and testing, Jellyfish Technologies can help you achieve your goals. With our expertise in security testing and integration, we can assist you in identifying potential vulnerabilities and implementing effective solutions to enhance your organization’s security posture.

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