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Security Testing

Decoding security testing: why is it needed, and how does it work?


Decoding security testing: why is it needed, and how does it work?

According to a security intelligence report, the average app is attacked by nearly 20,000 types. While a majority of these cyber attacks are unsuccessful, the sheer number of attempts by cyber criminals to exploit vulnerabilities in digital products makes a strong case for conducting application security testing.

In this article, you will be introduced to the importance, principles, focus areas and types of security testing, security testing automation tools, and how Oprimes can help you carry it out effortlessly.

What Is Security Testing And Why Is It Important?

Security testing is a critical part of software testing, which aims to identify potential weaknesses in the application and fix them before any major problem occurs. By discovering the loopholes, threats, and risks in the software, it helps prevent the loss of information, reputation, or revenue at the hands of outsiders and ensures the security of the application.

The primary security testing benefits are:

  • To discover existing threats in the system.
  • To evaluate the potential vulnerabilities of the system.
  • To help detect any possible security risks in the system.
  • To help developers fix the security issues through coding.

The 6 Principles Of Security Testing

Security testing is conducted on six basic principles: confidentiality, integrity, authentication, authorization, availability, and non-repudiation.

Availability means that an official person should retain the data. It also ensures that the data and statement services are ready to use whenever needed.

The primary goal of integrity is to allow the receiver to control the data given by the system. Integrity systems tend to use similar fundamental approaches as confidentiality structures. However, they usually include the data for communication to create the source of an algorithmic check rather than simply encrypting all communication.

Authorization is the process by which we define that a client is permitted to perform an action and also receive the services. Access control is an example of authorization. An example of authorization is access control.

Confidentiality is a security process that extends the data leak by an outsider to help ensure the security of your data.

Non-repudiation gives the assurance that the sender of a message cannot deny having sent the message and that the recipient cannot repudiate having received it. It is therefore used to guarantee that a conveyed message has been sent and received by the person who claims to have sent and received the message.

Through the authentication process, you can confirm the identity of the person and trace the source, which is necessary to allow the user access to private information.

The 4 Focus Areas Of Security Testing

The major focus areas of security testing are network security, system software security, client-side application security, and server-side application security.

  1. Network Security : The focus here is to check the vulnerabilities of the network structure, including policies and resources.
  2. System Software Security : The aim here is to evaluate the weaknesses of the application that runs on different operating systems, database systems, etc.
  3. Server-side application security : Server-side application security ensures that the server’s encryption and its tools can protect the software from any attacks or disturbances.
  4. Client-side application security : This is done to guarantee that no intruders can operate on a browser or tool which customers use.

Types Of Security Testing

As per the Open Source Security Testing methodology manual, there are seven main security testing types. These are:

  1. Vulnerability scanning which is carried out using automated software to scan a system and identify known vulnerability signatures.
  2. Security scanning which focuses on finding network and system weaknesses and providing solutions to help mitigate these risks. This type of scanning can be used in both manual and automated scanning.
  3. Penetration testing which simulates an attack from a malicious third-party. This type of testing involves evaluating a particular system’s response and vulnerabilities to an external hacking attempt.
  4. Risk assessment which involves analyzing any potential security risks. Risks are classified as low, medium, and high, and measures to reduce the risk are recommended.
  5. Security auditing is an internal evaluation of the applications and operating systems to find security flaws. This type of audit can also be carried out via line-by-line inspection of code.
  6. Ethical hacking involves hacking an organization’s software system for non-malicious reasons. Unlike malicious hackers, who carry out cyber threats for their own gains, ethical hacking intends to expose security flaws in the system so they can be fixed.
  7. Posture assessment combines ethical hacking with security scanning and risk assessment to determine the organization’s overall security posture.

Security Testing Tools

Several security testing tools are available, and you need to pick the right one depending on your testing needs. Popular testing tools include Acunetix, SonarQube OWASP, WireShark (previously known as Ethereal), and w3af.

It can also be confusing as to when you should use security testing automation during the software testing process. Testing should opt for automated testing in three scenarios:

  • If the tasks are straightforward and simple.
  • If the tasks are frequent, repetitive, and mundane.
  • If the testing process is extremely data-intensive

Security Testing Made Easy With Oprimes

Security testing is a complex process, having various layers, types, tools and techniques involved. If your QA team is struggling to navigate the security testing best practices, it’s time to outsource the burden to security testing companies.

Oprimes, India’s largest crowdsourced TaaS platform, can help you conduct effective security testing to ensure that sensitive data is protected and you retain the trust and loyalty of your users. Our comprehensive testing solutions, team of professional testers, and ready-to-use test cases help us provide results quickly. Visit our website to find out more about how we can help you!