APP Security- Why is it all-important?

  • Author

    Binny Chanchal
  • Published

Cyber security has always been a point of concern. The risks have only increased in the pandemic period. This has been a point of concern for developers. Also, with the new normal of work from home in place, due to the pandemic, the developers are forced to deal with new types of cyber security risks. This means that many apps are coming under the scrutiny of the government. Also, there has been an increase in controversial apps. Major security flaws have been exposed. All of this emphasizes the need for an effective cyber security management system to ensure foolproof security. However, the good news is that the increased security threat has made users give serious thought to app security. From the developer’s point of view, they are doing their best to create awareness and ensure the safety of the app for the users at every stage in the life cycle of the app.

Points to note

The points one should be aware of about securing apps are as follows. It includes

Knowing your enemy

This means getting to know who would possibly attempt to attack apps, and for what reasons? According to developers, there could be four major attackers. They are

  • Ideological attackers
  • Criminally-motivated hackers
  • State-sponsored hackers
  • Hackers who attack apps for financial gains
  • Bots that power all the above
    • An app developer should have a knowledge of which weakness the attackers would try to exploit. For example in an eCommerce platform, the reason for the attack would often be financial gain, in such a case the developers should pay attention to securing the credit card information. The same logic applies to all apps but threats might differ and so does the security measures.

      Determining what they want

      The next step is to determine what the attackers want. For example, cryptojackers may try and steal computer powers for crypto mining. Similarly, if you host ads in your app, you might be attacked by ad fraud hacks who will try to steal ad revenue so on and so forth. Therefore knowing what the hackers want will help secure the app you develop. You may also use resources to learn about security threats in the past two years and also get to know about the ways and tools to eliminate them.

      Securing software developmental life cycle

      You might be aware that there are different stages involved in the development and launch of an app. It is important to ensure effective security measures in each stage of the product life cycle starting from listing the requirements to the design and deployment of the app.

      Fixing responsibilities

      Each and every member of the development team are responsible for the security measures. It goes on to include even data from users that have to be secure.

      Secure coding

      Quality coding is a prerequisite. However, you will be able to monitor it using automated processes. This is done through continuous integration and deployment of codebases, introducing digital authentication processes like passwords, tokens, API keys, etc., and separating the same from the automated process. Likewise, static code analysis also would help identify bugs and vulnerabilities at an early stage.

      Updating 3rd Party dependencies

      Since the software development environment is constantly changing, ensuring that you have the latest version of programming language, framework, etc will help mitigate risks. Therefore, you should find digital partners who will keep you informed about the need to migrate, updation, maintenance, etc. In short, the knowledge and technical expertise of the service provider are important in ensuring that the security measures are top-notch in every level of the process.