What Is Web Application Visibility? | Feroot
Client-side Security Terms

What is Web Application Visibility?

Web application visibility is all about the insight and control application security professionals have into the software operating on the front end or client side. It includes all assets associated with the web application, from the application itself, to the application forms and the third- and fourth-party libraries connected to the application.

Web Application Visibility

Why Do Businesses Need Web Application Visibility?

Today, front-end developers assemble applications using original code, reused code, inserted code, code from internal libraries, and code from third-party sources. This creates a problem of visibility, particularly for the application security (AppSec) professionals that want to know if the web application is secure or not.

Why Is It Important?

Hackers and threat actors use obfuscated code to hide their malicious intent. Malicious scripts deployed in JavaScript libraries are often obfuscated and hard to detect using traditional AppSec methods, such as code reviews. So for AppSec professionals, visibility is a necessary and incredibly important component of the security process.

What Happens When Security Professionals Don’t Have Visibility?

The end results of hidden malicious code are skimming attacks, such as Magecart, formjacking, and cross-site scripting (XSS).

The 10 Parts of Web Application Visibility

There are 10 key components to web app visibility include:

  1. Identify assets, such as applications, forms, systems, and data.
  2. Identify all technologies in use, including third- and fourth-party code sources.
  3. Know the asset’s purpose, intent, and operational elements.
  4. Know the technology’s purpose, intent, and operational elements.
  5. Identify who has access to those assets.
  6. Identify current security processes and controls over those assets.
  7. Assess the effectiveness of the asset’s security processes
  8. Identify any likely threats or vulnerabilities in those assets.
  9. Identify compliance and regulatory implications (e.g., PCI, GDPR, or HIPAA) related to those assets.
  10. Codify a mitigation and remediation strategy for potential asset attack/breach.

Techniques & Tools to Improve Web Application Visibility

Techniques and tools to improve web application visibility include:

  1. Client-side attack surface monitoring solutions 
  2. Penetration Testing
  3. Client-Side Vulnerability Scanning
  4. Content Security Policies
  5. Web Application Firewalls (WAFs)

Learn More

If you’re interested in learning more about the importance of web application visibility check out these additional resources:

Blog: Client-side Security Risk Management: The Root-Cause Solution Approach

E-book: The Ultimate Guide to JavaScript Security

Demo: Automated Client-Side Attack Surface Management

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