Penetration testing is one of the best methods to check defence parameters thoroughly. We can apply it across the entire IT infrastructure, including databases, web applications and network security. But today, we also use it widely for mobile app penetration testing.
Mobile Application Penetration Testing
Here are the best practices to follow when conducting a mobile app penetration testing:
Develop a plan that describes the methodology of your test. Since every mobile app environment is different, carefully consider what exactly you need to test. The best way to get started is by consulting the OWASP cheat sheet. Though it is specifically designed for pentesting iOS applications, you can apply the same principles to other operating systems.
The Right Tools for Mobile Application Penetration Testing
There are many penetration tools available. Some of them are provided by vendors for a cost, while many others are free to use. The tools you pick for your pentesting depend largely on the environment you are going to use them in.
Mobile Application Penetration Testing Environment
Before conducting the mobile app penetration testing, plan your environment thoroughly. For instance, though Apple has made it very difficult to jailbreak its devices it is still possible providing the firmware can be rooted.
Mobile App Penetration Testing Server Attacks
As important as it is to test server environments, it’s also necessary to test the server the app calls from. Some of the aspects you need to test include:
- Authorised or unauthorised file uploads
- Open redirects
- Authentication mechanisms between the smartphone and server ( the steps a user takes before being able to download a mobile app)
- Cross-origin resource sharing
Mobile Application Pen Test Methodology
When you are pen testing the networking connectivity between the smartphone device and the mobile app server, always use a network proxy. A proxy helps collect data and important information about the network as well as the data packets.
Whatever the strategy, the following areas should be analysed when performing a mobile application pen test:
- Insufficient Transport Layer Protection
- Information Leakage
- Insufficient Authorisation/Authentication
- Cryptography – Improper Certificate Validation
- Brute Force – User Enumeration
- Insufficient Session Expiration
- Information Leakage – Application Cache
- Binary Protection – Insufficient Code Obfuscation