Security best practices with sticky notes.

Web App Security Best Practices – 2018 Edition

The typical web application has three vulnerabilities in it, according to the White Hat Security 2017 report. If the app gets breached, companies pay an average of $141 per record compromised in the attack.

This cost quickly adds up and has the potential to make companies go out of business, so it’s essential to follow the latest web app security best practices.

Without further ado, here’s a general list of the 2018 best practices for web application security.

Revisit Your Security Review Processes

App security solutions and processes are not set-it-and-forget-it. The available methods for fixing vulnerabilities and protecting your web apps change each year. If you’re still using older tactics, then you can’t defend against the latest types of attacks.

Schedule some time to go over your security review processes and bring them up to date as necessary.

Integrate Security Tools with Development Solutions

Your web app security measures shouldn’t come after the fact, especially if you have a fast-paced development cycle. When you have the security features running alongside automated building, you can reduce the risk of a vulnerability making it through into the final build. For teams using agile development methodologies, you also avoid waiting until the product is built to start working on the security side of things.

Use Container-Native Tools

Containers get held up as an excellent method to solve a lot of challenges in web application development, but your security tools may not be capable of protecting them. In some cases, limited visibility into the container makes it difficult to discover vulnerabilities.

Related: Why Secure Application Development Is a Necessity

Sometimes, the sheer scale of the containers exceeds what the solution can do. Container-native tools exist exactly for this environment.

The Principle of Least Privilege

You probably follow this principle for user accounts and other aspects of IT, so don’t forget about it when it comes to web applications. Focus on getting the application to use the fewest possible privileges to limit the attack surfaces available.

Change the Way You Use Cookies

Cookies give attackers an enticing attack surface that could give them access to sensitive information. If you choose to use cookies for your web application, limit the risks through encryption or prevent data storage in this form in the first place.

Related: Why Secure Application Development Is Critical to Conscious Companies

Document Your App Security Plan

A big part of security best practices is full security documentation. However, it’s still one that’s often overlooked. The advantage of documenting your app security plan is to have a top-down, comprehensive understanding of everything involved in protecting this software. You don’t lose this knowledge if key personnel leave your company or change positions. Instead, you build upon this document and optimize it with each iteration.

Focus on Priority Vulnerabilities

Vulnerabilities come in many types, and some are more important than others. You should address a vulnerability that’s nearly impossible to exploit later. A security hole that exposes your main customer database, on the other hand, should be at the top of the list.

Balance the possibility of a hacker using the vulnerability against the damage that they could cause if they do. You have limited resources, although companies keep increasing cybersecurity budgets each year. This best practice helps you allocate your budget and proactively address these concerns.

Companies push for faster development cycles every day, which leaves app security lagging far behind. The best practices of 2018 acknowledge this challenging environment and put measures in place that can adapt to it.

And, if you need a refresher, we’re always around to talk to.