What is API Security?
An application programming interface (API) allows for communication between and connectivity among applications while sharing data and enabling the integration of application software and services. Web-based APIs ultimately make the development of applications and services easier and more innovative by streamlining the delivery of requests and responses but leave several potential entry points to the backend services susceptible to attack. Furthermore, with this transferring of data, some API endpoints may be vulnerable to exposing sensitive information such as personal, medical, and financial information, making them a great target for compromising data and systems.
With the fast-growing implementation of APIs, API Security is becoming more and more prevalent. This focuses on mitigating the risks associated with utilizing APIs and protecting the information being communicated.
What is the OWASP API Security Top 10?
The Open Web Application Security Project (OWASP) API Security Project is a generated list of the Top 10 vulnerabilities associated with APIs. See the following table for the identified vulnerabilities and a corresponding description.
How to Strengthen Your API Security
Since APIs are widely used, securing their implementation is critical to your overall security. There are multiple ways to help further strengthen your API security and mitigate some of the vulnerabilities that may exist in your application development, some of which have been mentioned above. However, the following are an overview of a few controls you can put in place to harden your API security:
- Implement authorization tokens and enforce strict access controls as well as a strong authentication mechanism.
- Filter data being transferred and ensure encryption is being employed.
- Keep up to date on your overall security and stay informed about potential vulnerabilities within your business.
- Make use of API gateways which help to organize and control data by establishing rules for traffic.
- Limit the number and size of requests based on what is required.
If your company or business is interested in learning more about whether your applications are vulnerable, please contact us for more information.