In the present era, where technological innovations are flooding the industrial world, it has become hygiene for corporates to upgrade themselves owing to these high-tech methods. This never-ending spree of technological advancements leads to increasing demand for updated and premium quality products and services, responding to which companies are majorly focusing on software development and automation processes (with upcoming technologies like IoT, AI, Deep Learning, and Machine learning to innovate current products, improve efficiency and decrease costs. The upcoming technologies we are waving for the future will surely bring social welfare through technology advancement but it also has in store, a lot of vulnerabilities and flaws in security mechanisms, associated with it. Thus, Integrating Security Testing at beginning of the development cycle can help companies to save time, reduce overall cost, and improve the quality of security.
“If you don’t like testing your product, most likely your customers won’t like to test it either.” (Anonymous)
What is Security Testing?
Security testing is a process that elucidates ways to ascertain the potential flaws(vulnerabilities to malicious attacks, information leakages, etc.) in any software application to make it more secure, protect data and maintain functionality. It is not a predefined process but keeps changing with the functionality of the software. Testers start the process from the requirement gathering process to analyze the security needs of that particular application, which helps them find out the application’s vulnerable spots and plan their strategy accordingly. AI and machine learning are bringing innovation in the security testing field, testers are developing and offering runtime application self-protection (RASP).
Security testing shares some similarities with functional testing since some initial tests are similar but its framework needs to be designed separately. Where functional testing validates the truth behind testers knowledge, security testing focuses on revealing the infinite ways to break an application
There are further subdivisions to Security testing such as application security testing, network penetration security testing, payment gateway security testing, mobile application security testing, cloud application security testing & IoT security testing.
The absence of security testing has led to some of the worst data breaches of all times and here are the reasons accompanied by incidents that are calling for the necessary embedding of security testing in the development process and making it an integral practice.
Passwords protected by the weak SHA-1 hashing algorithm:
Weak codes which can be easily broken, giving easy access to the company’s network and credentials of the corporate employees:
Vulnerability to SQL injection
Outdated security paradigm:
Weak data encryption system:
Non-performance of sample testing of software before using them:
Think Future Technologies security testing services can help you detect this loophole at a very initial stage through their respective processes to avoid such instances in the future.
Types of security testing
An automated process to scan the software and get all missing patches and vulnerabilities in the application through dedicated tools such as Nessus or OpenVas.
It is a simulated test, (practiced either through automated processes or manually) which imitates the probable attacks of a hacker by finding loopholes and vulnerabilities that an attacker might misuse. It requires, that a tester must have prior permission from the owner of the application before proceeding. It is also known as white hat attacks
Security Risk Assessment
It reviews and analyzes all the potential threats to find the best risk mitigation strategy for the application. Security Risk Assessment aka SRA helps a tester prioritize his work on the basis of the risk level of a particular threat. It is further subdivided into two parts:
Security Review & Gap Analysis
It allows a classified specialist to penetrate the system mimicking the manner of actual hackers. The attempts are made to attack the application from within to expose security flaws and vulnerabilities and to identify potential threats that malicious hackers might misuse.
Scanning of network and system (either manually or automated), to evaluate its weaknesses and provide a solution to counter the flaws. A malicious request is sent to the system with each scan, following which the testers check for the behavior that could indicate security vulnerabilities which are later studied at length, analyzed, and fixed. SQL Injection, XPath Injection, etc. are some of such scans.
It inspects an application & operating system through an internal process and defines various security flaws. Testers check each and every code line separately.
It is a combination of 3 processes altogether to check the credibility of Security testing. Posture Assessment combines Security scanning, Ethical Hacking, and Risk Assessment to highlight the overall changes and improvements in the system.
Security Testing Approach
TFT’s Security testing Processes and Methodologies:
Profiling and Discovery
We study the application to understand user profiles, business case, functionality, site flow, and codebase. Then we perform the profiling of the application wherein we understand the core security mechanisms employed by the application, locate different user entry points, interfaces, and data flow paths.
Automated and Manual Security Scan
Automated application vulnerability scanners (i.e. commercial and open-source) are used to scan for application-specific vulnerabilities covering all OWASP, WASC, and SANS references.
Along with an automated scan, we perform a simultaneous manual assessment to eliminate false positives and negatives. The Manual assessment uses various vulnerability databases to identify vulnerabilities that were missed during automated scans, in addition to security verification of business logic flaws, broken access controls, and a few more.
Application Vulnerability Exploitation:
The primary focus in this phase is on using manual security testing techniques to exploit the system that includes several exploits. Then we assess the application hardening measures, cryptography issues, authentication, and authorization controls.
All exploitable security vulnerabilities in the target application are recorded and reported to the client.
Remediation Consultation and Reassessment:
Remediation consultation involves assisting the client’s platform team to remediate all reported application security vulnerabilities. Post-remediation, we conduct a reassessment to validate the effectiveness of the security control counter-measures taken to mitigate the reported vulnerabilities.
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