Wednesday, November 15, 2023

Top 11 Security Testing Tools to Use In Your CICD Pipelines

Table Of Contents

    Security testing tools are crucial in software development lifecycles because they empower you and your software teams to shift left and help your developers proactively detect and mitigate security weaknesses which can be a security threat if left unattended.

    So, while the laws for cyber security and data protection are becoming more stringent around the globe, it is advised by NIST to integrate the right security testing tools in your SDLC and CI/CD process for continuous monitoring of security issues.

    If you are SOC2 certified; or have an ISO27001 certification; or even GDPR certified then you need to be able to prove that you have a consistent application security structure with appropriate security tools in place.

    These automated SaaS security tools, ranging from open-source to professional-grade solutions, are integral in identifying vulnerabilities, assessing security risks, and protecting your web application from cyber attacks.

    Let me tell you the top 10 application security testing tools that will secure your applications from potential security issues.

    1. Cyber Chief

    Cyber Chief is an excellent and user-friendly vulnerability assessment tool for software teams who want to shift left with security and build security into their applications and APIs without always having to rely on security experts.

    With its 4 modules, Cyber Chief takes care of many of the 5 Fists of DevSecOps and helps you painlessly build security into your SDLC, rather than bolting it on later.

    This automated vulnerability testing tool can scan web applications even behind the login credentials page, helps you automate end-to-end API security as well as helps you secure your cloud platform console, eg. AWS, Azure or GCP.

    As Cyber Chief is created to be a developer-friendly security tool, your development team with no prior security experience can easily adapt to it as well. The added bonus is that it will help your devs and QA teams avoid the perils of false positives which is often a problem with legacy tools.

    Cyber Chief is one the best security testing tools that you can use in your development process and CI/CD process so that you can run security tests right from within your SDLC.

    It will provide your development team with detailed analysis reports with remediation fixes for identified cyber threats. Your development & security team can implement these code fixes to your application code easily.

    This automated web application security tool will be your development team's personal cyber security expert. Here are some of the most prominent vulnerability scanning abilities and key features of Cyber Chief:

    • Automated mobile and web application scans.

    • Schedule and execute scans for vulnerability detection.

    • Automated authenticated application security threats scans.

    • Detailed analysis of security flaws.

    • Security threat remediation for identified issues.

    • Intuitive dashboard for cloud security posture compliance testing.

    Want to see how Cyber Chief helps your devs & QA teams can help you fix vulnerabilities from within your SDLC?

    2. ZAP

    Zed Attack Proxy (ZAP) is a prominent open source web application vulnerability testing tool, highly regarded for its versatility and effectiveness in bolstering security measures. This professional-grade tool equips security experts and developers with a powerful arsenal to assess security issues in your web application.

    One of ZAP's standout features is its automated scanning capabilities, which efficiently detect prevalent vulnerabilities within web applications. These automated scanners are adept at identifying issues like SQL injection, Cross-Site Scripting (XSS), and more. This feature significantly expedites the vulnerability assessment process, allowing for quicker remediation and risk mitigation.

    However, being an open-source application security tool your support options are limited and you are faced with the typical build vs buy paradox associated with any free tools.

    Zap does have an active online community but you will need to dedicate a team of professionals to integrate this tool with your SDLC and to keep it running.

    • Platforms Supported: Windows, MacOS, Linux,

    • Scanner Capacity: Application security testing, API testing, and network ports.

    • Manual Pen Test: Yes

    3. Nessus

    Nessus is a powerful application vulnerability management tool known for its ability to swiftly and comprehensively identify vulnerabilities for various domains such as networks, web applications and databases.

    The network security testing tool features have earned Nessus its rightful place as a favourite among organizations with in-house security teams seeking to protect their digital assets. However, for organizations that don't have in-house security teams, this might not be the best option for security testing tools.

    If your development team doesn't have any experience with security testing for applications, Cyber Chief is the best option for you. It won't require your team to test and figure out fixes for security issues. Instead, this automated security testing tool will scan your applications and provide your development team with an in-depth analysis of the vulnerabilities and possible code snippets for securing applications.

    Want to end dependence on security experts and shift left with Cyber Chief?

    Nessus identifies vulnerabilities and generates detailed reports. The security testing reports offer insights into the discovered vulnerabilities, including their severity levels and potential impact. Moreover, the testing tool provides possible remediations, assisting security teams with actionable steps to patch security holes in their applications.

    • Platforms Supported: Windows, macOS

    • Scanning Capabilities: Software Applications

    • Manual Pen Test: No

    4. Metaspoilt

    Metasploit is known for its indispensable role in the web app pentesting framework. It helps security experts with the capability to simulate cyberattacks, allowing them to identify and rectify security issues. This security testing tool's framework is equipped with a vast and ever-evolving library of exploits and payloads.

    Metasploit can replicate cyber attacks in a controlled environment. This security testing done by simulating real threat scenarios gives developers a deeper understanding of their system's security posture, which can help to identify potential vulnerabilities and address them.

    • Platforms Supported: Windows, Unix (Linux and MacOS)

    • Scanning Scanning Capabilities: N/A

    • Manual Pen Test: Metasploit offers testing tools that can be used for pen testing.

    5. BurpSuite

    Burp Suite is known for identifying vulnerabilities within applications. Its appeal among security consultants and developers is mainly because of its user-friendly interface and an array of security testing features. This web vulnerability testing tool can scan SQL injection vulnerabilities, probing for Cross-Site Scripting (XSS) flaws, or uncovering Cross-Site Request Forgery (CSRF) risks.

    Burp Suite has a user-friendly design, which makes it accessible to a wide range of professionals. Along with this, the security issues testing tool is also known for its comprehensive suite of functions. It can also intercept and manipulate HTTP requests is and provide you with analysis for network vulnerabilities.

    • Platforms Supported: Windows, macOS

    • Scanning Capabilities: Web applications

    • Manual Pen Test: Yes

    6. W3af

    W3af is for its capabilities of enhancing the security of web apps helping organizations safeguard their applications from potential security issues. It is an open source security testing tool, designed to assess and improve the security of web applications. It can identify vulnerabilities such as SQL injection, cross-site scripting (XSS), and more. W3af offers a user-friendly interface, making it accessible to both security professionals and developers.

    It's an automated security tool that can scan, and provide you with detailed analysis reports & remediating for security threats.

    • Platforms Supported: Windows, OS X, Linux, FreeBSD, OpenBSD

    • Scanning Capabilities: Web applications

    • Manual Pen Test: No

    7. Nikto

    Nikto is an open source security testing tool, which can help uncover potential security pitfalls within web servers and applications. This security testing tool can scan security vulnerabilities stemming from outdated software and misconfigurations.

    Nikto can scan web servers and applications with precision. The open-source security testing tool assesses systems for vulnerabilities that could be exploited by hackers, such as outdated software versions, weak permissions, and risky configurations. This security testing tool helps in identifying security issues that might go undetected in your applications.

    • Platforms Supported: Linux

    • Scanning Capabilities: Web applications & servers 

    • Manual Pen Test: No

    While open source security testing tools help in identifying security threats, vulnerability assessment tools such as Cyber Chief can help you in identifying security threats in your web app, APIs, and cloud infrastructure with new updates as well as for continuously monitoring evolving cyber threats. But would this require you to assign the task of SaaS and application penetration testing services?

    Absolutely not! Cyber Chief will scan your web apps, APIs and check for cloud security compliance and provide you with a detailed analysis report along with possible fixes in the form of code snippets. You developers can simply use these code snippets to fix the security threats. Make your application secure while not taking up too much time for your developer's daily tasks.

    <<Want to protect your apps and cloud environment with an automated testing tool that never reads your code?>>

    <<CTA Yes, Book a demo>>

    8. OpenVAS

    OpenVAS offers a somewhat cost-effective and comprehensive solution for vulnerability assessment and mitigation. OpenVAS is an open-source web applications vulnerability scanning tool that can conduct comprehensive vulnerability assessments.

    The open source software security testing tool can scan network systems for vulnerabilities with precision. This is one of the multi-purpose open-source security testing tools that can assess various aspects, from network services and host configurations to web applications. While open-source tools can seem like a good option to begin with, they cannot guarantee database security for your web apps.

    • Platforms Supported: Windows, Linux, macOS

    • Scanning Capabilities: Web applications and network protocols.

    • Manual Pen Test: Yes

    9. StackHawk

    StackHawk assists organizations with the security of their web applications. This application testing tool is aimed at security experts to identify and remediate security vulnerabilities within web applications during the development process. The application penetration testing tool can be integrated into CI/CD pipelines and can scan your application code as it is written and deployed.

    The vulnerability testing tool provides developers with results, which include information on vulnerabilities like SQL injection and XSS, and guidance for resolving those issues. This software testing tool helps development teams to address security issues early in the development lifecycle.

    • Platforms Supported: MacOS, Windows, Linux

    • Scanning Capabilities: Web Applications and API scans

    • Manual Pen Test: Yes.

    10. Appknox

    Appknox offers easy integration capabilities with CI/CD pipelines. It is a security testing tool that is aimed at mobile app development teams. The benefits of this security testing tool are limited to mobile app security.

    It is made to identify and remediate security vulnerabilities in their mobile applications. Using a combination of an automated vulnerability assessment tool and manual testing, Appknox can detect security issues such as insecure data storage, insecure communication, and broken authentication. It provides analysis reports with recommendations for developers.

    • Platforms Supported: macOS, Windows

    • Scanning Capabilities: Web Applications and API Scans

    • Manual Pen Test: Yes

    11. SQLMap

    SQLmap can perform various types of SQL injection attacks, including blind SQL injection. Developers can automate the security testing process of identifying SQL injection points, extracting database information and taking over the database servers.

    This is one of the web app security testing tools that provides analysis reports for its security scanning which assists advanced penetration testers in evaluating potential security issues of web applications and data stores.

    • Platforms Supported: Windows, Linux

    • Scanning Capabilities: Web applications

    • Manual Pen Test: No

    One of the best security testing tools that you can integrate into your software development lifecycle, and CI/CD pipelines is Cyber Chief.

    Cyber Chief is an automated application security testing tool that will help you detect vulnerabilities in your application through your development process. It has a user-friendly interface, is easy to set up and will help your development team with low-level vulnerability management through the software development process. 

    Along with this, it will provide you with possible solutions that can be used to patch the security holes in your applications. Sounds too good? Book a demo to learn more.

    Want to know how Cyber Chief keeps your applications, and cloud data safe and sound?

    What are DAST and SAST tools?

    DAST (Dynamic Application Security Testing) and SAST (Static Application Security Testing ) are two different approaches used to identify security issues in web applications. Both of the security testing approaches have distinct methodologies and aims.

    DAST Tools

    DAST tools evaluate web apps during runtime, actively investigating weaknesses by sending requests and scrutinizing responses. These testing tools replicate actual cyberattacks, emphasizing the application's external behaviour for assessment. They excel at discovering common web application vulnerabilities, including:

    • SQL Injection: DAST security tools test for database manipulation vulnerabilities that could allow unauthorized access or data leakage.

    • Cross-Site Scripting (XSS): They identify instances where malicious scripts can be injected into web pages, potentially affecting other users.

    • Authentication Issues: DAST tools assess the authentication mechanisms of an application, uncovering potential weaknesses in user login and access control.

    SAST Tools

    SAST tools analyse the web app source code, bytecode, or binary code without executing it. They scan the codebase for vulnerabilities, coding flaws, and security issues. These tools are designed to conduct security testing such as:

    • Vulnerability Detection: They specialize in detecting vulnerabilities, coding flaws, and security issues within the code, regardless of whether these issues have been triggered or exploited.

    • Insecure Coding Practices: SAST tools can identify insecure coding practices, such as the use of known vulnerable libraries or weak cryptographic algorithms, helping developers avoid these pitfalls.

    • Early Detection: A significant benefit of SAST is early detection. By analysing the code during the development phase, developers can identify and rectify security issues before they make it into the final product.

    Cyber Chief is one of the best security testing tools that will help you protect your applications so you can ship them with zero known vulnerabilities. The automated vulnerability testing tool can be easily added to your SDLC and CI/CD pipeline. With the detailed analysis and possible solutions provided by Cyber Chief, your developer can employ low-level security issues. So, advanced penetration testers can focus on the critical vulnerabilities.

    Ready to take action now and to keep your applications safe, 24/7?

    What are the phases of DAST?

    Dynamic Application Security Testing (DAST) consists of two integral phases, each serving a unique yet interconnected function in the evaluation and improvement of web application security.

    1. Crawling Phase

    This initial phase serves as the reconnaissance mission of DAST. In the crawling phase, the DAST tool meticulously scrutinizes the web applications to map their structure and functionality. It will systematically navigate through the application, identifying various URLs, input fields, and resources such as scripts, stylesheets, and images.

    After which, it will follow hyperlinks, form submissions, and other navigational elements within the application to ensure comprehensive coverage. As and when necessary DAST tools manage user authentication to access secured areas of the application. As a final step, it creates a site map documenting the paths and pages within the application.

    2. Testing Phase

    During the testing phase, the DAST tools engage in a comprehensive examination and perform security testing by probing for vulnerabilities by simulating real-world attacks.

    This critical phase aims to assess the web application's susceptibility to potential security risks and provides valuable insights for mitigation and remediation.

    DAST tools simulate real-world attacks, testing for vulnerabilities with inputs like SQL injection or Cross-Site Scripting payloads. The best vulnerability testing tools analyze application responses to detect potential security weaknesses.

    These security testing tools assign severity levels to identified vulnerabilities, gauging their potential impact. These web apps' security testing tools then, generate comprehensive reports summarizing vulnerabilities, severity levels, and remediation recommendations.

    3. Remediation Phase

    One of the friction points between development teams and security testing requirements is the lack of support that is provided to developers to patch vulnerabilities found by the automated penetration testing software.

    Most vulnerability scanning tools provide little guidance to help developers save time and implement best-practice fixes. The better tools do provide detailed remediations.

    However, the best security testing tools provide on-the-job coaching to your development team to help them implement the right fix in the right place.

    One example of such a tool is Cyber Chief where your devs will have the ability to get fast and detailed answers from application security experts about their vulnerability management and patching questions.

    Want to see how on-the-job AppSec coaching works?

    What Should You Do Next?

    These security testing tools provide a comprehensive approach to enhancing the security of various digital assets, including web applications, networks, and mobile apps.

    The top security testing tools will address a wide range of your application security needs, making them valuable for security experts, and developers within your organization.

    These security testing tools for web applications and APIs empower development teams and organizations to protect their applications from cyber threats.

    SaaS Brief