A lot of companies have APIs these days like Google or Facebook. However, those APIs aren’t just sitting there waiting for hackers to come along and attack them. Unfortunately, many people are not aware of the amount of work that goes into protecting APIs from hackers. We’ll talk about API security testing in this blog post because it’s important to know this if you’re developing APIs.
API security testing helps you secure your application by finding the weaknesses in your APIs. This way you can protect them from hackers. Testers perform API security testing in several steps. This includes identifying what kind of API architecture has been set up and testing for vulnerabilities, and API certification. The API security has to be designed to make sure the API itself is secure before any “attack” begins. It’s important to look at all aspects of API development in order to keep your system protected!
You need API security testing because of the crucial role it plays in securing APIs. APIs are essentially just a platform for data exchanges between two programs. API tests need to make sure the API is devoid of any vulnerabilities that hackers could exploit. Testing also helps you make sure that the API itself needs to have strong authentication practices set up. So, unauthenticated users won’t gain access.
If you’re developing an API, it’s absolutely crucial that APIs are secure when they go live!
The API has to protect itself so unapproved access can’t happen. This means taking steps like enforcing strong password policies, using SSL/TLS to encrypt API traffic, restricting API access only to authenticated users, and using API key authentication. You can use both manual and automated tools to test the APIs for vulnerabilities.
API security vulnerabilities are potential threat actors that hackers might exploit in order to steal money or data from the API itself, or from the API’s users.
Unhandled Methods: Unhandled methods are any API endpoints that don’t have a defined handler, allowing them to be called by anyone. It’s important to check if the API has any internal or hidden endpoints which can be accessed without authentication.
Cross-Site Scripting (XSS) Attacks: Malicious scripts are injected into legitimate and trusted websites in this type of injection. You have to test API inputs in order to ensure they do not return any unexpected or unintended results when used.
Cross-Site Request Forgery (CSRF): It’s a type of attack in which an end-user is forced to perform undesirable activities on a web application in which they’re currently logged in.
Denial-Of-Service (DoS) Attacks: DoS is an attack where hackers send requests to the API servers at a rate that prevents the processing of any other API requests. Server security testing is a critical part to test for rock solid security.
There are several API security best practices that can help ensure your APIs remain secure and sound from vulnerability threats. These include:
API Rate Limiting: this prevents brute force attacks and makes it difficult for hackers to identify valid API keys.
API Keys: they should be random, long, and include a high number of characters and digits in order to make them more secure. It is also good practice to frequently rotate API keys as well as use different kinds of API keys for different kinds of access.
API Tokens: Tokens change peruse so that even if a hacker captures one token it will not work on another request. In addition to changing them peruse is also good practice to frequently rotate API tokens as well. Tokens have to be only for read-only access and never for write or administrative purposes.
API Access Control: this means only allowing access from trusted sources or networks and ensuring API keys are safe. The key authentication should be used for APIs to ensure security and API data can’t get stolen by attackers.
API security testing has to be different for different applications. And because of that, the prices are also different. However, API testing, in general, is one of the most affordable types of security tests out there. You can complete it by hiring an external firm to do it for you or performing API testing yourself if your company has its own team.
If you’re looking into API security testing prices, you’ll find that API security design and API certification are also fairly inexpensive. API Security Design usually costs around $500, as well as API Certification which can be as cheap as $100.
You may not be thinking about how your API could potentially make you vulnerable to attack. But, it’s important that you do because an attacker can use security vulnerabilities in your APIs. They can gain access and control of sensitive data like credit card numbers or social media account credentials. If this sounds scary, don’t worry! This blog has got you covered.