2 min read

6 Common Website Security Vulnerabilities


Even the most experienced CIO and web security expert must stay vigilant and guard against the bad guys. No one is safe without knowing what to look out for. Here are six of the most common security vulnerabilities you must protect yourself against.

Most Common Website Security Vulnerabilities

1. SQL Injections

SQL injection is a type of web application security vulnerability in which an attacker attempts to use application code to access or corrupt database content. If successful, this allows the attacker to create, read, alter, or delete data stored in the back-end database. SQL injection is one of the most prevalent types of web application security vulnerabilities.

2. Cross Site Scripting (XSS)

Cross-site scripting (XSS) targets an application's users by injecting code, usually a client-side script such as JavaScript, into a web application's output. The concept of XSS is to manipulate client-side scripts of a web application to execute in the manner desired by the attacker. XSS allows attackers to execute scripts in the victim's browser, which can hijack user sessions, deface websites, or redirect the user to malicious sites.

3. Broken Authentication & Session Management

Broken authentication and session management encompass several security issues, all of them having to do with maintaining the identity of a user. If authentication credentials and session identifiers are not protected at all times, an attacker can hijack an active session and assume the identity of a user.

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4. Insecure Direct Object References

Insecure direct object reference is when a web application exposes a reference to an internal implementation object. Internal implementation objects include files, database records, directories, and database keys. When an application exposes a reference to one of these objects in a URL, hackers can manipulate it to gain access to a user's personal data.

5. Security Misconfiguration

Security misconfiguration encompasses several types of vulnerabilities, all centered on a lack of maintenance or a lack of attention to the web application configuration. A secure configuration must be defined and deployed for the application, frameworks, application server, web server, database server, and platform. Security misconfiguration gives hackers access to private data or features and can result in a complete system compromise.

6. Cross-Site Request Forgery (CSRF)

Cross-Site Request Forgery (CSRF) is a malicious attack where a user is tricked into performing an action he or she didn't intend to do. A third-party website will send a request to a web application that a user is already authenticated against (e.g. their bank). The attacker can then access functionality via the victim's already authenticated browser. Targets include web applications like social media, in-browser email clients, online banking, and web interfaces for network devices.

Don't get caught with your guard down. Practice safe website security measures and always be ready to protect yourself and your company's future from an attack that you might never recover from. The best way to tell if your website or server is vulnerable is to conduct regular security audits.

Want to learn how you can protect your website from these common web security vulnerabilities? Here are 8 simple ways you can improve website security right now.


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