The next item of the OWASP Top 10 is using components with known vulnerabilities in applications and software. In this article, we will understand what is this and how it puts your application at risk.
A lot of software applications today use many third-party components, libraries, frameworks. Many applications call APIs and web services that are outside and developed by other partners.
This poses a risk to the applications which are using these libraries. If any of the third-party libraries have a Vulnerability, this can cause an attack on your application.
Some of the open-source libraries put the Vulnerability information public to inform users once they find it. National Vulnerability Database is a public vulnerability database that keeps an update about the risks which get reported. Users can take advantage of this database and some of the other notifications and can update their systems.
Hackers can also see these vulnerabilities and they target applications that are using these libraries.
How to Prevent these mistakes?
- Keep Systems up to date
The first step to protect your software is to keep them up to date. Almost every software and library developer provides regular updates. When it comes to security issues then these updates become more important. In your application, if you are using any third party libraries then you should keep a track of updates on them You should subscribe to the latest release and updates. This helps you to take quick action before its too late.
2. Regular Vulnerability scans
Software developers can take the help of tools that can do a scan of software. These scans help in finding risks and vulnerabilities. Once you get the risk detected then take the action to fix it.
This helps you update or patch your software and avoid the attack. Sometimes it is not feasible to do the manual scans so automation can help. Scans can be scheduled at regular time intervals and notifications can be sent.
3. Apply security measures
Once you find a risk in your application then the first thing you try is to patch it or update software. But sometimes when you have a dependency on a third-party library, framework, etc. In this case, you are stuck and you feel like you can not do anything except just waiting for a fix.
But as you might have heard “precaution is better than cure”. So when you wait and can not cure, you should take precautions. Precautions help to reduce the risk. You can use web application firewalls, or you can add extra authentications, etc. Precautions totally depend on your application architecture and case on a case basis. So just do whatever your application can support. Do not sit and wait!!