6 Ways Your Data is Vulnerable to XSS
Cross scripting (XSS) vulnerabilities leave your database open to exploitation. Once I hacker has gained entry they can add information, remove information or download that information for their own use. Companies need to audit their web applications in order to make sure that their data is invulnerable to XSS. Six ways that your data may be vulnerable include: cookies, and SSL connection, forums, user issues, special characters and limited security.


In terms of online activity, cookies are not a treat. Their purpose is to help users access information that they once viewed on a website. It also helps the owner of the website with analytics. Hackers also love cookies, however and the way they use them as to help gain access into a website or into a personal computer.
Personal computer security tips include routinely cleaning out cookies. Users can even create a setting that does not allow third-party cookies when they surf online. Many users do not follow these security tips and when they don’t it allows for Issues for both the surfer and the commercial site they visit.

SSL Connection

Users and businesses both believe that if information is viewed through an SSL connection they are safe from attack. This is not true in terms of XSS vulnerabilities. The code that is being used is only exploiting a vulnerability that already exists. Just like firewalls cannot protect from certain hacker attacks, you can’t rely on an SSL connection to protect you from Cross scripting vulnerabilities.


When the company allows users to enter information directly into a database or add information to a forum they are leaving themselves open for a possible Cross scripting attack. Once a hacker is in a forum and is entered information they then can start entering code that will exploit any existing vulnerabilities and allow them to gain access to the inner workings of the website.

User Issues

The way that a user inputs information can leave commercial websites and web applications vulnerable. One way that user input can allow hackers access to web applications is when they request a lost username or password. If the company does not have proper safety protocols in place to verify the authenticity of the request, then a hacker can game the information they need to enter a website.
This is because users are often not careful in terms of creating usernames and passwords. If the hacker can gain access to one, then they can make a request from the company website to obtain the other. Users also do not often have proper security software on their computing devices. If a hacker has been able to gain access to the individual’s computer they may be able to either obtain usernames and passwords for specific sites or no the sites that they visit and how they gain access.

Special Characters

Some companies try to eliminate the ability of hackers to guess passwords or usernames by allowing special characters. While this can make a password more complex, it can leave a company’s data vulnerable to XSS attacks. If a company is going to use special characters to help end-users create usernames or passwords, there should be special parameters in place to help make the company’s web applications less vulnerable.

Limited Security

Another way your data may be vulnerable to XSS is due to lack security measures. If your company does not audit your web applications and e-commerce sites for potential vulnerabilities you may not be aware of problems that already exist. If your company has limited security or does not have a routine in place for monitoring and protecting online applications, then you may be vulnerable to an attack and not be aware that it has occurred.
Your company needs to create and maintain a strict security schedule in order to protect data from Cross scripting and other attacks. Limit the use of cookies, don’t rely on an SSL connection and make sure that the use of forums does not expose the company to unnecessary risk. Limit special characters and create routine audits of rope applications to help protect your company’s data as well as to find and eliminate any potential XSS vulnerabilities.
Author Bio:
Fergal Glynn is the Director of Product Marketing at Veracode, an award-winning application security company specializing in secure SDLC, prevent XSS with, and other security breaches with effective risk assessment tools

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6 Ways Your Data is Vulnerable to XSS Reviewed by Ethical Hacking on 2:11 AM Rating: 5

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