The 2020 Application Security FAQ

About Lares

Lares® (Lar-Res) is a Denver, CO cybersecurity consulting company that prides itself on its ability to provide continuous defensive improvement through adversarial simulation and collaboration. Lares can help your organization validate its security posture through offensive security-focused services such as complex adversarial simulations, network penetration testing, application security assessments, insider threat assessments, vulnerability research, continuous security testing, virtual Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) services, and coaching.

Here at Lares, we want to help you make the most informed security decisions you can for your organization by giving you confidence. Confidence to defend against attackers with the tools at hand, address security and compliance concerns, and pass audits and assessments.

What is Application Security?

Application security refers to the steps taken to harden the application against abuse from an attacker. These steps take place throughout the lifecycle of an application from the initial design and architecture phases, through development and deployment, and the support and maintenance phases. The steps required to prevent, identify, and resolve security weaknesses throughout these phases include Threat Modeling, Secure Development, Application Security Testing, and Vulnerability Management.

Why is Application Security Important?

A strong application security posture helps maintain a positive brand image by protecting organizations against targeted attacks by threat actors that would otherwise lead to a security breach and impact customer and shareholder trust in the brand. Application security is also important in maintaining a positive brand image.

What is Application Security Testing?

Application Security Testing is the process of assessing the efficacy of security controls applied to an application to identify weaknesses and risks in an application’s security posture that may result in financial losses, impact to brand reputation, health or well being of employees, shareholders, and/or customers, or service disruption. There are three main approaches to performing Application Security Testing, Dynamic Application Security Testing (DAST), Static Application Security Testing (SAST), and Interactive Application Security Testing (IAST).

What is Dynamic Application Security Testing (DAST)?

DAST is a form of security testing where a live, running application is probed for security flaws in a similar fashion to how a user would interact with an application. This type of testing excels in showing the immediate impact of identified flaws and interaction with multi-system system architecture.

What is Static Application Security Testing (SAST)?

SAST is performed by analyzing source code, bytecode, or decompiled applications. This type of testing is often used to identify subtle logic bugs such as Apple’s goto fail, analyze cryptographic code, or identify additional attack paths that may not be presented to the through normal interaction with the application.

What is Interactive Application Security Testing (IAST)?

IAST is a form of security testing that instruments an application (typically with an agent) to blend both dynamic and static techniques to identify security flaws. IAST is typically deployed in non-production environments to identify flaws prior to deployment.

Learn About Lares Application Security Services

What Application Security frameworks exist?

Many security frameworks exist for different aspects of application security. Below are some example frameworks Lares uses during it’s consulting services to measure clients’ security postures.

What are the most common application security flaws?

The Open Web Application Security Project (OWASP) maintains several “Top Ten” lists of common vulnerability classes. The original OWASP Top Ten list highlights the top ten vulnerability classes for web applications, with additional lists such as Mobile, IoT, Serverless, and Proactive Controls.

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