Weaknesses in an app are the leading cause of business breaches. However, finding and removing the flaws in the app in time is difficult due to the numerous vulnerabilities that can be exploited.
Either way, securing applications is a necessity. According to a recent survey, 49% of app users said they would quit if they found it puts them and their data at risk.
The reality is that applications contain sensitive data about their users, and they often form the backbone of an entire company. Remote employees can use them to login to the system or your entire service can rely on it to work properly.
Not every cyberattack includes a ransom note, and you may not even know that the system has been compromised, something that can last for months. Compromised credentials or malware that allows cybercriminals to monitor users and change data to their advantage can be the main signs of an attack.
One cybersecurity solution designed to protect apps from potential threats and weaknesses is RASP security. What is it and how does it protect applications against the worst-case scenarios?
What is RASP Security?
Runtime Application Self-Protection (RASP) protects apps from known and emerging threats. It works silently in the background when the application is being used and tracks changes and scans for unwanted activity to stop it and remove malicious code as quickly as possible.
Companies install RASP on their applications to protect them once they are deployed and running.
Grate protection can be used for both web and non-web based apps. The main difference between RASP security and other application protection solutions is that it is self-protective.
Once RASP runs in the background of the app, it is protected from within, without disrupting the design of the app. Instead, it focuses on protecting functions on the server.
RASP Security protects applications based on fixed rules
RASP security secures applications by using language-specific security and taking into account the context in which the app is deployed.
Language-specific security (also known as LangSec) is the language used in setting the specific rules that the software should pay attention to when protecting an app.
Every organization has different assets that need protection. Therefore, the tool sets different rules for threat scanning and mitigation.
Running security software based on the context of the application and its use means that the security is designed to meet the needs of the specific organizations that use the app for work or to share their services.
Once installed and the rules set, RASP follows the protocols written in LangSec syntax and analyzes any potential unwanted activity. If it identifies known malicious activity within the app, it will be removed immediately.
Protecting apps from known threats
Some of the protocols that accompany RASP are written to protect the app from known vulnerabilities and hacking methods. The starting point will be the list of OWASP’s top 10 threats to applications.
After extensive testing, the OWASP list currently identifies these threats as the most worrying for applications:
Access Control Broken Cryptographic Errors Injection Insecure Design Security Misconfiguration Vulnerable and Outdated Components Authentication Error Software and Data Integrity Error Security Registration and Monitoring Errors Server Side Request Forgery
Threats and flaws are listed based on the severity and likelihood of damage to the application. For example, a broken access control has been recognized as the most common problem for the tested applications.
Protecting apps from zero-day attacks
Applications also need to be protected against new hacking methods, known as zero-day threats. These are the techniques that cannot be predicted and for which IT teams do not yet have solutions. Still, they can harm the business and give hackers access to the app.
While solutions for new hacking methods are not always readily available, the RASP security software can analyze activity based on the rules set and discover all the things that might be unusual for the app.
Secure apps when offline with RASP
This protection is valuable for applications that run in a separate environment and thus do not require an internet connection or even a network.
While such apps rely on localized access, they require the same level of security as apps that are primarily online and accessible to the public. This can refer to things like outdated or outdated software programs still running in the background.
Be that as it may, RASP ensures that the application is protected from malicious code injection attempts or requests.
Buying time to patch up
As new threats appear within systems every day, it is often difficult to detect and mitigate them all.
IT teams responsible for securing systems are typically overwhelmed by the sheer number of vulnerabilities. In addition, there is the challenge of distinguishing truly high-risk errors from low- or medium-severity errors.
RASP protects vulnerable applications no matter where they are in the system. It essentially shields the app and buys time for security teams to identify and fix issues that need to be addressed.
As many business breaches begin by exploiting flaws in apps, it’s clear that with the right security, IT teams can remove and contain a major vulnerability from their systems.
Available solutions often provide patches for applications to ensure they are safe to use, but they can also leave multiple security gaps. The main reason for this is that available tools often don’t have a comprehensive overview of security when they protect apps and can’t defend them against zero-day attacks.
RASP protects applications from within. It secures them based on the specific application environment and rules explicitly written for the app in question to ensure optimal protection against both known threats and zero-day attacks.