Business Logic Security Testing

Business logic is a term used to describe the rules and processes that govern how a business operates lets understand how to protect it.

Business Logic is Everywhere!

Let’s explain what business logic is. BL (business logic) is a term used to describe the rules and processes that govern how a business operates. These rules and processes can be anything from how a company handles customer service to how it manufactures its products. Business logic is often used to contrast with code, which is the actual software that runs a business. However, business logic is the set of rules that dictate how the software should operate.

The first idea that comes to mind to explain the rules of business in a real world is a supermarket. Imagine the scenario: you enter the store, then take a shopping cart, put inside the products that you want to buy, and lastly proceed to the checkout. This is the main logic of this type of commerce.

But what if a vicious client will pay for his shopping cart but, by the way, hide some articles in his bag? The commerce’s owner hopes that the electric gate will alert..

The electric gate is the main protection mechanism of this specific store. If the electric gate fails, there is a breach in the store. The second way to protect it could be to set up video cameras to stop thieves from taking things before they get to the last gate. This is exactly our goal in BLST security, to prevent the weak link in your business. I will explain further.

Let’s permit me to take another example more tricky: voting. If the elector uses two envelopes instead of one, his vote will be counted as two. Imagine the catastrophic damage to the integrity of the elections. In this context, security is in human eyes only.

Now that you understand what business logic is, we can dive into the virtual world.

Business Logic in API Eco-system

An API (application programming interface) is a set of rules that allow software programs to interact with each other. The API is the middleman that allows different software programs to communicate with each other. Business logic and API are often used together because the last one can be used to access the business logic of a software application. The business logic can include the rules for how data is handled, how users are authenticated, what actions are allowed, and what workflows are followed. By using an API to access the business logic, developers can create custom applications that work with the software application or web tool.

While API security is a hot topic in the world of software development, one of the most important aspects is ensuring that the API’s business logic is sound. What is BL in the API world? In short, it is the set of rules that govern how your API functions. This can include everything from how data is processed and stored to how users are authenticated and authorized to access specific resources. It’s important to note that business logic is distinct from application logic, which refers to the code that actually implements the functionality of your API. While application logic is important, it’s the business logic that really defines what your API does and how it works. 

ST

Security through testing is the process of testing a system to find security vulnerabilities before attackers can exploit them. By finding and fixing these anomalies, you can make your system more secure and less likely to be exploited.

There are many different types of application security tests, but some of the most common include static code analysis, dynamic code analysis, and penetration testing. Static code analysis is a type of security testing that is performed without actually running the code. This can be done manually or with the help of automated tools. 

Dynamic code analysis is a type of security testing that is performed by running the code and observing its behavior. Penetration testing is a type of security testing that is performed by attempting to exploit security vulnerabilities. Application security testing is an important part of the software development process. Early on in the development process, it is important to test applications for security flaws so that any flaws can be fixed before the app is released.

Why is business logic important for API security?

The fact that business logic governs how your API functions makes it a critical component of API security. After all, if there are flaws in your business logic, it can open up your API to all sorts of security vulnerabilities. For example, let’s say your API’s business logic dictates that unauthenticated users are allowed to access certain resources. An attacker could exploit this by crafting a malicious request that bypasses authentication, allowing them to access sensitive data that they otherwise wouldn’t be able to.

The fact that business logic governs how your API functions makes it a critical component of API security. After all, if there are flaws in your business logic, it can open up your API to all sorts of security vulnerabilities. For example, let’s say your API’s business logic dictates that unauthenticated users are allowed to access certain resources. An attacker could take advantage of this by making a malicious request that gets around authentication. This would let them see sensitive data they wouldn’t be able to see otherwise.

Starting with Business Logic Protection

  • Keep things simple. One of the best ways to improve the security of your business logic is to keep it as simple as possible. The more complex your business logic is, the more opportunities there are for security vulnerabilities to slip through the cracks. 
  • Avoid using unsafe coding practices. When writing the code for your business logic, it’s important to avoid insecure coding practices. This includes things like hard-coding passwords, using weak encryption algorithms, and failing to properly validate user input.
  • Maintain current knowledge As new security threats emerge, it’s important to stay up to date on the latest threats and how they could impact your API. This will help you to adapt your business logic as needed to keep your API safe.
  • Perform security testing. Once you’ve written your business logic, it’s important to put it through its paces with some security testing. This will help to uncover any potential security vulnerabilities and give you a chance to fix them before they can be exploited. I will detail it in the next section.

Further reading with more tips to secure your business from data breaches

Our aim – Security through Testing

Our approach is more similar to application security testing. DAST is a type of testing that looks for security vulnerabilities in software that is already running in its operational environment. It is contrasted with static application security testing, which analyzes software source code or binaries without executing them. The DAST tools work by running against a live application and trying to exploit known vulnerabilities. Some DAST tools can even simulate a real user interacting with the application to look for potential security issues. DAST can be used to find a wide variety of security vulnerabilities, but it can only find vulnerabilities that are already known. It cannot find new or unknown vulnerabilities. While our vision is different, we focus on business logic to find new vulnerabilities that fit your system.

One of the things we do at BLST to protect your API is test it. With the help of our attacker, we do a simulated penetration test based on business logic. Then, with the help of the decider, we figure out where business logic vulnerabilities can show up.

In conclusion

Business logic for APIs is a new area for a type of vulnerability that was previously denigrated and misunderstood. This type of vulnerability can lead to serious security issues, so it is important to be aware of it and take steps to protect your API.