OWASP Top 10 Security Risks

February 7, 2020

A critical element to every business with online assets such as a corporate website, is web application security.  

By design, the same internet that provides global connectivity and internetworking between web applications and users also exposes web properties to potential threats from various attack vectors.   

Web application security deals specifically with attack points surrounding websites, web applications, and web services such as APIs. Having visibility into the most critical of web application risks is therefore critical to identifying weak security points and closing them before a bad actor can do damage.   

This is why we’ve recently added the ability to complete external scans against the Open Web Application Security Project (OWASP) top 10 web application security risks to both Arctic Wolf Managed Detection and Response and Managed Risk solutions. 

An exclamation point with "Security Alert" written on the screen

This feature continuously scans your external web servers to detect and mitigate threats based on the OWASP top 10. The Arctic Wolf Concierge Security team works with you to share the results of these scans through executive summaries, external vulnerability reports, and charts and graphs displayed in the Managed Risk Dashboard. OWASP scanning covers the top 10 web application security risks, which make up the following categories:  

1. Injection 

Injection flaws, such as SQL, NoSQL, OS, and LDAP injection, occur when untrusted data is sent to an interpreter as part of a command or query. 

2. Broken Authentication

Application functions related to authentication and session management are often implemented incorrectly, allowing attackers to compromise passwords, keys, or session tokens, or to exploit other implementation flaws to assume other users’ identities temporarily or permanently.  

3. Sensitive Data Exposure 

Many web applications and APIs do not properly protect sensitive data, such as financial, healthcare, and PII. Sensitive data may be compromised without extra protection, such as encryption at rest or in transit, and requires special precautions when exchanged with the browser.  

4. XML External Entities (XXE) 

Older or poorly configured XML processors evaluate external entity references within XML documents. External entities can be used to disclose internal files using the file URI handler, internal file shares, internal port scanning, remote code execution, and denial of service attacks.  

5. Broken Access Control 

Restrictions on what authenticated users are allowed to do are often not properly enforced. Attackers can exploit these flaws to access unauthorized functionality and/or data, such as access other users’ accounts, view sensitive files, modify other users’ data, change access rights, etc.  

6. Security Misconfiguration

Security misconfiguration is the most commonly seen issue. This is usually a result of insecure default configurations, incomplete or ad hoc configurations, open cloud storage, misconfigured HTTP headers, and verbose error messages containing sensitive information. Not only must all operating systems, frameworks, libraries, and applications be securely configured, but they must be patched/upgraded in a timely fashion. (See also: Security ​Controls Benchmarking with Arctic Wolf: check out a full rundown with the CIS Top 20 Critical Security Controls

Man in suit holding a phone with "Cross-site scripting written on the screen

7. Cross-Site Scripting (XSS)

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.  

8. Insecure Deserialization

These flaws can lead to remote code execution attacks—one of the most serious attacks possible.

9. Using Components with Known Vulnerabilities

Components, such as libraries, frameworks, and other software modules, run with the same privileges as the application. Applications and APIs using components with known vulnerabilities may undermine application defenses and enable various attacks and impacts.  

10. Insufficient Logging & Monitoring

Insufficient logging and monitoring, coupled with missing or ineffective integration with incident response, allows attackers to further attack systems, maintain persistence, pivot to more systems, and tamper, extract, or destroy data.  

Unlike product-based alternatives that license web application scanning separately, OWASP top 10 web application security scanning is included within the core capabilities of Arctic Wolf SOC-as-a-Service. This provides another layer of insight into your overall security posture for Arctic Wolf Managed Detection and Response and Managed Risk solutions, while enhancing the Arctic Wolf Concierge Security Team’s ability to advance your security outcomes.   

For more information on Arctic Wolf’s leading SOC-as-a-service, Managed Detection and Response, Arctic Wolf Agent, or Managed Risk, visit arcticwolf.com  

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CIS Critical Security Controls: What Are The Top 20?
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