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Best Practices for Web Application Security

8 Best Practices for Web Applications Security

By Chris Justus, Senior Manager, Vinyl Development and Tim Bond, Vinyl Product Manager

Understanding the importance of security when it comes to low-code application development, with a look at eight best practices for safeguarding web apps.

Cybersecurity, security, and data privacy will undoubtedly continue to be top-of-mind for businesses and organizations throughout 2024, and for good reason. Recent data shows worldwide cybercrime costs are estimated to hit $10.5 trillion annually by 2025, emphasizing the need for enhanced cybersecurity measures.

As expected, web apps run on the internet, making security and data protection paramount for you, your business, and anyone interacting with the apps. With continued financial investments being made in low-code application platforms, understanding security best practices for building web applications is imperative for safeguarding company data and mitigating potential threats.

How to build secure web applications with a low-code platform

Incorporating security into the application development lifecycle from the very beginning is the best way to ensure your web application protection.

Ensure that the low-code application development platform you choose is built with security in mind from the ground up. The platform should be secure, regularly monitored and tested by third parties, and go through rigorous auditing cycles. The low-code platform should also meet any regulatory compliance requirements your organization needs.

When it comes to securing web apps built with low-code solutions, ensure that your platform offers best-in-class features and options for security.

8 best practices for securing web apps

  1. Password policy

    Implement and enforce a strong password policy for all web apps. This policy will enforce rules that passwords must meet to gain access to the app. Having a strong password policy makes it harder for cybercriminals to gain access.

  2. Encrypt sensitive data

    Any sensitive or private data in web apps should be properly stored and encrypted. Encrypting data is the process of encoding it so that it becomes unavailable or hidden to unauthorized users. Data encryption is another key tool in the web app security arsenal.

  3. Implement role-based security

    Any user with access to web apps should belong to a defined role and only have access to information and actions required to perform their specific role. Best-in-class low-code application development solutions allow you to further restrict access down to the individual row-level. Implementing role-based and row-level security measures restricts access to data and information to authorized, known users.

  4. Leverage a security provider

    In web applications, security providers can be used to ensure that only authenticated users access the application. Implementing a security provider enforces a strong gateway to the web app, making it harder for cybercriminals to gain entry. Best-in-class low-code application development solutions should integrate with common protocols including: OAuth, SAML, SSO and OpenID Connect.

  5. Enable auditing

    Auditing tracks information on changes made from within the web application. Audit data provides an audit trail that can be used to determine who, when, and what changed. Auditing gives administrators and stakeholders visibility into monitoring changes made in applications.

  6. Keep software updated

    Software updates are typically available on a regular cadence. It’s important to keep your software updated to help prevent security vulnerabilities. Updates often include fixes to improve security, threats, and vulnerabilities. Minimize risks and vulnerabilities by keeping your web application software up to date.

  7. Require HTTPS

    Web applications run on the internet and should always run on HTTPS with all HTTP traffic redirected. Running on HTTPS provides another layer of security against cyber criminals, as it uses encryption to protect information passed between clients and servers.

  8. Run QA test plans

    After any upgrade, web applications should go through a QA test cycle to ensure all aspects are working as expected. Although it’s not common, there are times when upgrades unexpectedly break functionality in web applications and potentially make them vulnerable to attacks. Thorough QA testing helps validate that everything is functioning as expected and that your web application is secure.

Security in web applications can be a complex and challenging topic for organizations to understand and effectively manage. Choosing a low-code platform with a rigorous security strategy, combined with implementing the most effective security measures when building your web application, positions your organization for success.

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