Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Attacks/Breaches

3/23/2016
10:30 AM
Preston Hogue
Preston Hogue
Commentary
Connect Directly
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail vvv
100%
0%

Think Risk When You Talk About Application Security Today

Security from a risk-based perspective puts the focus on component failures and provides robust security for the ultimate target of most attacks -- company, customer and personal data.

The definition of application security has not evolved in parallel with the current state of applications. Let me explain. Twenty years ago, applications mainly operated independently of the Internet. During this time, the process for securing apps was simply adhering to best practices for secure coding throughout the software development lifecycle. But, it’s no longer the late 90’s. While secure coding is still an essential foundation to application security, it’s only one piece of a much larger puzzle.

Security professionals must now expand our definition of application security to include a risk-based perspective that accounts for the vast number of threats we must defend against. In doing so, we’ll improve the security posture across all facets of our apps and their deployment, thereby safeguarding our data and businesses. Looking at app security from a risk-based perspective puts focus on component failures, and provides robust security for the ultimate target of most attacks—company, customer, and personal data.

Today’s attackers have a convenient route to data through the application, but a risk-based approach accounts for vulnerabilities that secure coding can’t protect against. This approach includes analyzing the exposed elements of an application, and then developing a holistic security strategy for that app in its entirety. Attackers only need one component of an app left unaccounted for in order to compromise it -- whether it’s a code vulnerability, compromised identity, network availability, weak encryption, or DNS. And once attackers are inside, the entire application, as well as the data it houses, will be affected.

Application availability is a great example of a threat beyond the scope of secure coding. Since most apps today are Internet-based, a volumetric DDoS attack can cripple, or even take them down, rendering even the most securely-written code useless. Another threat vector to consider is confidentiality. What happens when a password is stolen? The application can be compromised and its data exposed.

This situation will not get any easier. There are approximately one billion Web apps in existence today. The rapid growth of the Internet of Things—and the applications that go along with it—will lead to apps numbering in the billions, and it’s naive to think that all of them will be securely coded.

We must immediately rethink our definition of application security so we’re in a better position to effectively secure all the components that make up our apps, safeguard our data, and protect our businesses.  

Related Content: 

 

Interop 2016 Las VegasFind out more about security threats at Interop 2016, May 2-6, at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center, Las Vegas. Click here to register. 

Preston Hogue is the Director of Security Marketing Architecture at F5 Networks and serves as a worldwide security evangelist for the company. Previously, he was a Security Product Manager at F5, specializing in network security Governance, Risk, and Compliance (GRC). He ... View Full Bio
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Stop Defending Everything
Kevin Kurzawa, Senior Information Security Auditor,  2/12/2020
Small Business Security: 5 Tips on How and Where to Start
Mike Puglia, Chief Strategy Officer at Kaseya,  2/13/2020
5 Common Errors That Allow Attackers to Go Undetected
Matt Middleton-Leal, General Manager and Chief Security Strategist, Netwrix,  2/12/2020
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon
Current Issue
6 Emerging Cyber Threats That Enterprises Face in 2020
This Tech Digest gives an in-depth look at six emerging cyber threats that enterprises could face in 2020. Download your copy today!
Flash Poll
How Enterprises Are Developing and Maintaining Secure Applications
How Enterprises Are Developing and Maintaining Secure Applications
The concept of application security is well known, but application security testing and remediation processes remain unbalanced. Most organizations are confident in their approach to AppSec, although others seem to have no approach at all. Read this report to find out more.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2019-20477
PUBLISHED: 2020-02-19
PyYAML 5.1 through 5.1.2 has insufficient restrictions on the load and load_all functions because of a class deserialization issue, e.g., Popen is a class in the subprocess module. NOTE: this issue exists because of an incomplete fix for CVE-2017-18342.
CVE-2019-20478
PUBLISHED: 2020-02-19
In ruamel.yaml through 0.16.7, the load method allows remote code execution if the application calls this method with an untrusted argument. In other words, this issue affects developers who are unaware of the need to use methods such as safe_load in these use cases.
CVE-2011-2054
PUBLISHED: 2020-02-19
A vulnerability in the Cisco ASA that could allow a remote attacker to successfully authenticate using the Cisco AnyConnect VPN client if the Secondary Authentication type is LDAP and the password is left blank, providing the primary credentials are correct. The vulnerabilities is due to improper in...
CVE-2015-0749
PUBLISHED: 2020-02-19
A vulnerability in Cisco Unified Communications Manager could allow an unauthenticated, remote attacker to conduct a cross-site scripting (XSS) attack on the affected software. The vulnerabilities is due to improper input validation of certain parameters passed to the affected software. An attacker ...
CVE-2015-9543
PUBLISHED: 2020-02-19
An issue was discovered in OpenStack Nova before 18.2.4, 19.x before 19.1.0, and 20.x before 20.1.0. It can leak consoleauth tokens into log files. An attacker with read access to the service's logs may obtain tokens used for console access. All Nova setups using novncproxy are affected. This is rel...