OWASP Top Ten Mobile Testing Methodology

ScanWave Mobile Application Testing Overview

ScanWave mobile testing is based on OWASP Top 10 methodology for mobile application security. The OWASP Top 10 represents a broad consensus about what the most critical mobile application security flaws.
The goal of ScanWave mobile testing is to raise awareness about mobile security by identifying some of the most critical risks facing organizations and identify all mobile applications vulnerabilities and security threats.
The OWASP Top 10 mobile applications methodology is referenced by many standards, books, tools, and organizations, including MITRE, PCI DSS, DISA, FTC, and many more.

ScanWave CTS Risk Rating Methodology

ScanWave adopted OWASP Top 10 that focuses on identifying the most serious risks for a broad array of organizations. For each of these risks, we provide generic information about the likelihood and technical impact using the following simple rating scheme, which is based on the OWASP Risk Rating Methodology.

Mobile Testing OWASP Top 10

  • 1

    M1- Improper Platform Usage

    This category covers misuse of a platform feature or failure to use platform security controls. It might include Android intents, platform permissions, misuse of Touch ID, the Keychain, or some other security control that is part of the mobile operating system. There are several ways that mobile apps can experience this risk.
  • 2

    M2- Insecure Authentication

    This category captures notions of authenticating the end-user or bad session management. This can include:
    • Failing to identify the user at all when that should be required.
    • Failure to maintain the user's identity when it is required.
    • Weaknesses in session management.
  • 3

    M3- Insecure Data Storage

    This new category is a combination of M2 + M4 from Mobile Top 10 2014. This covers insecure data storage and unintended data leakage.
  • 4

    M4- Insecure Communication

    This covers poor handshaking, incorrect SSL versions, weak negotiation, cleartext communication of sensitive assets, etc.
  • 5

    M5- Insufficient Cryptography

    The code applies cryptography to a sensitive information asset. However, the cryptography is insufficient in some way. Note that anything and everything related to TLS or SSL goes in M3. Also, if the app fails to use cryptography at all when it should, that probably belongs in M2. This category is for issues where cryptography was attempted, but it wasn't done correctly.
  • 6

    M6- Insecure Authorization

    This is a category to capture any failures in authorization (authorization decisions on the client-side, forced browsing). It is distinct from authentication issues (e.g., device enrollment, user identification). If the app does not authenticate users at all in a situation where it should (granting anonymous access to some resource or service when authenticated and authorized access is required), then that is an authentication failure, not an authorization failure.
  • 7

    M7- Client Code Quality

    This was the "Security Decisions Via Untrusted Inputs," one of our lesser-used categories. This would be the catch-all for code-level implementation problems in the mobile client. That's distinct from server-side coding mistakes. This would capture things like buffer overflows, format string vulnerabilities, and various other code-level mistakes where the solution is to rewrite some code that's running on the mobile device.
  • 8

    M8- Code Tampering

    This category covers binary patching, local resource modification, method hooking, method swizzling, and dynamic memory modification. Once the application is delivered to the mobile device, the code and data resources are resident there. An attacker can either directly modify the code, change the contents of memory dynamically, change or replace the system APIs that the application uses, or modify the application's data and resources. This can provide the attacker with a direct method of subverting the intended use of the software for personal or monetary gain.
  • 9

    M9- Reverse Engineering

    This category includes analysis of the final core binary to determine its source code, libraries, algorithms, and other assets. Software such as IDA Pro, Hopper, otool, and other binary inspection tools give the attacker insight into the inner workings of the application. This may be used to exploit other nascent vulnerabilities in the application, as well as revealing information about back end servers, cryptographic constants and ciphers, and intellectual property.
  • 10

    M10- Extraneous Functionality

    Often, developers include hidden backdoor functionality or other internal development security controls that are not intended to be released into a production environment. For example, a developer may accidentally include a password as a comment in a hybrid app. Another example includes disabling of 2-factor authentication during testing.

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