Mobile App Security Challenges And Solutions

4 Jan 2018
app security

Undoubtedly, mobile apps are juicy targets for the hackers. With each passing day, numerous new apps hit the market, and at the same time, numerous hackers work hard to tap into these apps to phish for user information or implant malware. Mobile apps have inherent security risks that cannot be underestimated. It comes as no surprise that mobile app security remains one of the most difficult challenges, which the mobile app developers cannot afford to ignore.

The theft of credit card information, user profiles, and other essential data occurs on a daily basis, developers are aware of this fact and are investing their time, money, and efforts, in order to face those challenges. The app security issues not only affect the users, but the businesses also, as, if the security issues allow hackers to compromise with the users’ personal data, it won’t be easy for the businesses to regain their customers’ trust or rebuild their reputation.

Not only app developers, but also the businesses should be aware of the security challenges and the required solutions, in order to ensure that the users really benefit from the app and at the same time are not left vulnerable. Here is a closer look at the mobile app security challenges and solutions.

• Device Fragmentation

Device fragmentation makes it even more difficult, to secure mobile apps. Developers need to accept fragmentation as a reality not only now, but for the foreseeable future. Mobile device fragmentation can be a problem for the developers, who create different versions of the same app, it can also be problematic for IT departments, because different operating versions have different capabilities, which can make them harder to manage and secure. It is generally accepted that fragmentation is a complex issue that cannot be solved easily. Thus, developers should consider device fragmentation as an important issue, and should work for solving it.

•  Weak App Code

Mobile app malware often addresses errors in app design or app coding. There are businesses that prefer to use code developed by other developers. Many hackers create codes in a hope that app developers or businesses would use their code, and ultimately they would be able to steal the sensitive information. A business or a mobile app development company should not trust the third-party codes without verification. If the developers create the codes from the ground up, in that case, they should try to make the code stronger, so that it would not affect the app’s security.

•  Insecure Data Storage

Another reason why mobile app vulnerabilities exist is that, some programmers have bad data storage habits. In some of the most popular apps, users enter their passwords once while activating the payment portion of the app and they use it, again and again, to make unlimited purchases without having to re-input their password or username. In such cases user data should be secure and usernames, passwords, and email addresses should be encrypted. Developers can even design the app in such a way that sensitive information like passwords, contact details, credit card details, etc, do not reside directly on a device.

•  Lack Of Server-Side Security

There are many app developers, who offer good security for their apps, but their server-side security is susceptible to attack. If you have a secured app, and it is paired with an unsecured server, your business will remain at a substantial risk. Although securing servers can prove frustrating and tedious along with requiring expertise, but it is not an impossible task. Ensuring the server to which your device is paired, saves your business from various headaches and data breaches, even in the foreseeable future. Thus, the businesses should take necessary actions, in order to increase the security of their servers.

•  Physical Breaches

There are some breaches other than the digital breaches, which needs the developers concern. There are certain chances that the device may be stolen or lost, and even temporary missing of a device can put sensitive data at risk, in such cases apps can be made to implement session timeouts weekly or monthly to clear the device of stored passwords. Thus, it is important to consider the physical breaches and not only the digital ones.

•  Poor Authorization And Authentication

Undoubtedly, authentication and authorization are a double threat for the app developers, and they have to face this threat wisely, in order to secure their apps. The challenges around authentication and authorization are even more complicated. Mobile app developers should focus on both authentication and authorization equally. Persistent authentication within mobile apps should be implemented as opt-in and not be enabled by default. Thus, problem of authorization and authentication should be resolved, in order to make your app more secure.

Hackers are lurking to try and steal sensitive data and compromise app security, and in respond to this, businesses are required to hire top-notch mobile app developers, who can help them respond quickly to threats. Security is one of the most crucial aspects of mobile application development, so, proper steps should be taken, in order to make an app secure.

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