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OWASP Top 10 Security Risks-2017

I written around 7 web security and cyber security related articles, in this article i will summarize latest version OWSAP top 10 critical security risks.

What is OWASP?

The Open Web Application Security Project (OWASP), an online community, produces freely-available articles, methodologies, documentation, tools, and technologies in the field of Web application security.

How OWASP decides top 10 risks?

The OWASP Top 10 focuses on identifying the most serious web application

security vulnerabilities and risks for a different types companies and organizations.

For those risks OWASP team provides generic information about likelihood and technical impact using simple rating scheme, based in OWASP Risk RatingMethodology

The final version of the 2017 OWASP Top 10 was released on November 21, 2017 according to OWASP team following are the ten most critical web application security risks presently.

OWASP Top 10 year 2017

 A1: Injection
 A2: Broken Authentication
 A3: Sensitive Data Exposure
 A4: XML External Entities (XXE) [NEW]
 A5: Broken Access Control [Merged]
 A6: Security Misconfiguration
 A7: Cross-Site Scripting (XSS)
 A8: Insecure Deserialization [NEW]
 A9: Using Components with Known Vulnerabilities
 A10: Insufficient Logging & Monitoring [NEW]

OWASP team introduced three new critical security risks in 2017 version release I will explain those in short.

A4: XML External Entities (XXE)

Many 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.


a. In must require case only use complex data formats such as JSON and serialization and deserialization else avoid it.

b. Upgrade XML dll, libraries those used like XML processors Update SOAP to latest version.

c. User server side while list approach for input validation, data sanitization, for xml document, headers and xml nodes.

d. Validate all external XML/XSL files.

e. Use tools like SAST to detect XXE and perform manual code review

d. According to OWASP the safest way to prevent XXE is always to disable DTDs (External Entities) completely.

For more details use OWASP prevention cheat sheet

A8: Insecure Deserialization

What is serialization and deserialization

To store and use for communication convert data into stream of bytes, deserialization is reverse process.

Insecure Deserialization

Insecure deserialization often leads to remote code execution. Even if deserialization flaws do not result in remote code execution, they can be used to perform attacks, including replay attacks, injection attacks, and privilege escalation attacks.


a. Safest way is to avoid serialized data from untrusted users and untrusted sources.

b. Implement integral check such as digital signature

c. use strict type constraint when deserialization and serialization, for example allow only defined classes

d. code that prevents deserialization and serialization in low privileges environment

e. Log deserialization and serialization failures, exceptions and monitoring incoming and outgoing connectivity from containers and servers that deserialize and monitoring deserialization.

f. There are some language specific Guidelines and proper coding techniques for developers that prevent from this attack, I suggest developers and programmers to refer following cheat sheet documents from OWASP.

A10: 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.


a.  Log all login, access, validation failures with sufficient details, that details you can use to track identify suspicious or malicious accounts.

To maintain logs, use standard centralized log management system.

b.  Implement effective monitoring and alerting such that suspicious activities are detected and responded in timely fashion.

c. Requires audit and monitoring on high value transaction.

d. Adopt incident/failure plan and recovery plan for system.

e. Use proper notification and alerts for suspicious activities.

References: //


धन्यवाद मित्रो !! 

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