Feeds

150 ways to let hackers in

Shut that (code) door

Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet

To paraphrase Paul Simon, there are 150 ways to leave your software open to attack, according to Fortify Software, the Palo Alto-based security software specialist.

In the latest update to its Fortify Security Coding Rulepack, the company says it has added a further 34 "vulnerability categories", bringing the grand total to 150.

Fortify's philosophy is that the best place to deal with security threats is in source code when software is being built. Well-designed code can prevent a wide range of attacks and Fortify's Source Code Analysis tool helps improve code design and keep out the malcontents.

"Security threats are a constant challenge to programmers - but their priorities are to meet deadlines and deliver new features. We can help by giving them good tools to help make software less vulnerable," says Jacob West, manager of the security research group at Fortify.

According to Fortify, the two most-prevalent forms of attack are cross-site scripting, where rogue code pretends to be from a trusted site, and SQL injection, where executable SQL commands are put into data streams.

West says cross-site scripting can be prevented by using data flow analysis. "You can identify data as it comes in and check that it is what it says it is. A billing address, for example, should only contain letters and numbers. If it contains special characters then it may well be suspect."

Similarly, SQL injection may be avoided by ensuring that SQL data streams do not contain executable instructions. "SQL injection introduces extra commands into an SQL stream which can circumvent access control and enable data to be changed. If you can control the SQL command input you can do almost anything. But you can prevent it by input validation and restricting what you allow in commands."

The rulepacks are part of Fortify's Manager Security Control Centre. ®

Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet

More from The Register

next story
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
'Windows 9' LEAK: Microsoft's playing catchup with Linux
Multiple desktops and live tiles in restored Start button star in new vids
iOS 8 release: WebGL now runs everywhere. Hurrah for 3D graphics!
HTML 5's pretty neat ... when your browser supports it
Mathematica hits the Web
Wolfram embraces the cloud, promies private cloud cut of its number-cruncher
Google extends app refund window to two hours
You now have 120 minutes to finish that game instead of 15
Intel: Hey, enterprises, drop everything and DO HADOOP
Big Data analytics projected to run on more servers than any other app
Mozilla shutters Labs, tells nobody it's been dead for five months
Staffer's blog reveals all as projects languish on GitHub
SUSE Linux owner Attachmate gobbled by Micro Focus for $2.3bn
Merger will lead to mainframe and COBOL powerhouse
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.