In the past few years, mobile app development technology is gaining much popularity. To fulfill the demands of customers, different applications have been designed for mobiles. Because of the growing trends as well as the demand for mobile apps, hackers try exploiting mobile solutions.
Thus, mobile app security has become paramount in any development process and custom software developers are constantly on the lookout for the latest solutions that minimize risk or even eliminate risk completely. App security is not a benefit or a feature, but a bare necessity. A single breach could cost your brand not only millions but a lifetime of trust as well.
Security therefore should be a priority from the moment you begin writing the first code line. In any custom application development endeavor these days, security again is a must. Application developers must do everything they can to protect users and clients, with so much information that could be jeopardized.
Ten Ways to Build Data Security
1. Writing Secure Code
Most attackers use the bugs and vulnerabilities in code to break into an application. All attackers have to do is a public copy of an app to try and reverse engineer code and then tamper it. A study reveals that malicious code is impacting more than 11 million mobile devices at any time.
When hiring a custom application development service, always keep the security of code in mind from the very first day and harden code, making it hard to break. Consider minifying and obfuscating the code so it could not be reverse-engineered. Test again and again and fix bugs as soon as and when they’re exposed.
2. All Data Encryption
Each and every data unit exchanged over the app should be encrypted. Encryption, the process of jumbling plain text until it’s just an indistinct alphabet soup that doesn’t mean a thing to anyone, except those with the key. Meaning, even if data is stolen, criminals could not read and misuse anything.
Further understanding of the power of encryption is realized when organizations such as the FBI and NSA ask permission to access code messages on WhatsApp and iPhones. If they could not breakthrough willfully, then definitely hackers could not do so as well.
3. Only Use Authorized APIs
Unauthorized APIs and loosely coded unintentionally could grant privileges to a hacker that could be gravely misused. Programmers could locally reuse the information when making API calls easily through caching authorization information, for example.
It furthermore makes the life of coders easier through making the API usage seamless. It nonetheless provides attackers a loophole in which they could sabotage privileges. It’s recommended by experts that APIs should be centrally authorized for maximum security.
4. High Authentication Level
The fact that several of the biggest breaches in security occur because of weak authentication, it’s becoming all the more important to utilize stronger authentication. Simply, authentication means passwords as well as other personal identifiers, which serve as entry barriers. Truly, a big part of this depends on the app’s end users.
However, custom software developers could encourage users to be more sensitive in terms of authentication. Apps could be designed in a way that only accepts alphanumeric passwords that are robust, which has to be renewed in three or six months’ time.
Gaining prominence at present is multi-factor authentication, which involves a combination of dynamic OTP and static passwords. In the case of applications that are overly sensitive, biometric authentication, such as fingerprints and retina scans could be used as well.
5. Extra Care when using Libraries
When you have to use third-party libraries, be very cautious and entirely test code before you apply it on your app. While they may be very useful, some libraries could be very insecure for your app. Take for instance the GNU C Library, which has glitch insecurity, which could let attackers execute malicious code and remotely crash the system.
Additionally, this vulnerability moreover went undetected for more than seven years. Developers need to exercise policy controls during acquisition and controlled internal repositories to protect applications from any library vulnerability.
6. Making use of the Least Privilege Principle
The principle of least privilege could run only with the permissions that it truly requires, no more, no less. An app must not ask for more privileges than the minimum required for it to function. If you don’t need access to the contacts of users, then don’t ask for it.
Never make unnecessary connections to a network. The list goes on is dependent hugely on the app’s specifics, thus performing threat modeling continuously when updating code.
7. Proper Session Handling Deployment
Mobile ‘sessions’ last much longer compared to desktops. This makes handling sessions difficult for the server. Instead, to identify a session, consider using tokens instead of device identifiers.
At any time, tokens could be revoked, which makes them more secure in case devices are lost or stolen. Enable remote data wiping from a stolen or lost device and also enable remote log-off.
8. Best Cryptography Techniques and Tools Utilization
For your encryption efforts to pay off, key management is critical. Your keys should never be hard-cored because stealing them would be easy for attackers. Keys should be stored in containers that are tightly secure, and do not ever store them on the device locally.
Some greatly accepted cryptographic protocols, such as SHA1 and MD5 have been proven not enough by modern security standards. Therefore, you should only stick to the latest, most trusted APIs, like the 256-bit AES encryption with SHA-256 hashing for example.
9. Tamper-Detection Techs
When someone attempts to tamper with code or try injecting malicious code into it, there are techniques that could set off alerts. You could deploy active tamper-detection to ensure that code would not function at all when modified or changed.
10. Repeated Testing
Securing the app is a never-ending process. As new threats could surface, then new solutions are also required. Consider investing in threat modeling, penetration testing, and emulators to test apps for vulnerabilities continuously. Fix them with every update and when required, issue patches.
The ongoing breaches of data and the growing risks in privacy-related to social media continue to be a national and international problem. The issues prompted regulators to explore the need for stronger and new regulations seriously to protect the privacy of consumers.
An information security awareness program is a critical requirement for any company and business organization that wants to ensure security, legitimacy, privacy, availability, and effectiveness of information assets.