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3/10/2008
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WhiteHat, F5 Offer 'Click & Fix' for Web App Vulnerabilities

Integration deal automatically fixes cross-site scripting, SQL injection flaws on Websites

Web application security provider WhiteHat Security and F5 Networks have teamed up to offer automatic fixes for vulnerabilities found in Websites.

WhiteHat, which is well known for its hands-on vulnerability assessment of major e-commerce and other Websites, has integrated its Sentinel service with F5’s enterprise Web application firewall, Big-IP Application Security Manager (ASM). The combination lets Website operators click and fix any newly discovered cross-site scripting (XSS) and SQL injection flaws on their sites. This is a first for both firms.

“This is going to change the Web security game,” says Jeremiah Grossman, founder and CTO of WhiteHat Security. “This is going to allow the security guy to get some breathing room.”

Grossman says the companies initially focused on XSS and SQL injection because they are the most rampant flaws on sites, but will eventually expand their coverage to other Web application vulnerabilities as well. The integration of Sentinel and F5’s WAF provides automated detection and remediation, which is something WhiteHat’s customers have been requesting, Grossman says.

“A lot of Websites are having trouble fixing their vulnerabilities quickly,” he says. “What our customers were asking for is an alternative, easier solution to putting our vulnerability [analysis] into actionable” form.

It works like this: Based on the results of Sentinel’s Web app scanning and expert analysis, Sentinel then directly configures policies on the F5 ASM to fix any XSS and SQL injection bugs on a Website. Ken Salchow, F5’s manager of technical marketing, left the door open for similar arrangements with other Web app firms. “This is the first automated integration [partnership], but this is not an exclusive” one, he says.

Salchow says the problem was that policies generated by F5’s ASM had been daunting to some of its customers, so they wouldn’t implement them. “They don’t have confidence with Web applications or vulnerabilities. And they are afraid to block valid traffic [inadvertently]. That’s why we wanted to bring the [WhiteHat] human element into it.”

The catch, of course, is that you have to be both a WhiteHat Sentinel and F5 ASM customer to get this one-click remediation service. The integrated solution of WhiteHat Sentinel and F5’s ASM will be generally available in the second quarter and existing customers of both WhiteHat and F5 get the new feature automatically at no extra charge.

— Kelly Jackson Higgins, Senior Editor, Dark Reading

  • WhiteHat Security
  • F5 Networks Inc. (Nasdaq: FFIV)

    Kelly Jackson Higgins is the Executive Editor of Dark Reading. She is an award-winning veteran technology and business journalist with more than two decades of experience in reporting and editing for various publications, including Network Computing, Secure Enterprise ... View Full Bio

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