July 05, 2019 | By Webandcrafts
10 Beneficial Practices to Watch for Android Application Security in 2019
Cyber-security has become the worst nightmare for many of the business firms, and the studies on the cyber attack statistics are feeding their anxiety. Over the past 10 years, a 40 percent increase is recorded for cyber crimes, and the panic factor is the increasing number of attacks against mobile phones, especially that works on Android operating systems. In a cluster of 10 people, 7 are using the smartphone with this OS, and it shows the need for Android Application Security concerns even as a part of the app development process.
Through the below-listed points, we aim to provide some essential practices to Watch for Android Application Security in 2019.
Despite what kind of Andriod application you need to build, follow these useful practices, and keep in mind that the attacks over the Andriod OS are rising terribly. Here we go.
1. User Authentication
- a. Frequently asking for the user credentials increases the chances for phishing.
Solution: Use an authorization token and refresh it
- b. Storing user credentials in the device is vulnerable.
Solution: Complete the initial authentication using the supplied credentials and then use short-lived, service-specific authorization token.
- c. Providing access to all devices risks security.
Solution: Implementation of secure and integrated access gateway guarantees that only passive devices can access.
Conclusion: OAuth 2.0 or JSON web tokens, Multi-factor authentication, a disconnection system, and proper session management provides advanced authentication.
2. Insecure Data and Reverse Engineering
If your app is working under the vulnerable code, the hackers find it easier to perform the illegal activities. Reverse engineering is one of those methods. It will examine software and its components in detail and will recreate it. Reverse engineering on the source code affects the operations of the application. It is mainly affected by apps with insecure codes.
- a. Use code rattling in such a way that human beings and decompiler cannot figure out the syntax. It provides a robust code that resists reverse engineering.
- b. Use obfuscation instruments for comprehensive app testing with an insight that, you are the attacker.
- c. Handle your keys in such a way that it is stored in the safest place with and should be of appropriate length.
- d. Encrypt the source code of the app: It is a common practice to encrypt the user’s personal data. But you should encrypt the app source code too.
3. Server Protection and Data Communication
Server and API attacks are quite a common scenario.
Solution: Add a new Web application firewall and perform code reviews periodically.
How can you protect your data, if you are communicating with an unsafe server through unsecured network traffic? This unencrypted channel won’t provide data integrity.
- a. Use SSL chain verification offers a secured connection between a web server and a browser. Also, use the TLS protocol to ensure computer networks.
- b. Don’t use the SMS channel and push notifications to send sensitive data.
- c. Use the most reliable encryption algorithms. It includes Triple DES, RSA, AES, Blowfish, or Twofish.
4. Data Encryption
Attackers try to catch out the source codes and the data transmitted between the device and the back-end server.
Solution: High-end data encryption is the best choice. It blocks data from hackers.
5. Data Storage
Use internal storage to store private data
Store the private data in the internal storage of the device. Other apps can not access these files, which is an added advantage. Also, when the app gets deleted, all the data stored by the app get deleted automatically.
Be alert on using the External Storage
By default, the Andriod devices don’t emphasis on the security measures on the data that relies on the external memory. So we have to follow some security measures. It includes:
a. Scooped Directory Access
If your app needs only a particular set of data from the devices’ external storage, then use scooped directory access method. Also, your app should use the directory access URI that grants permission to the app whenever it needs access to the directory.
- b. Validity of Data
While using data from the external storage, be alert on checking the validity. If the data is not in a stable format, your validity checker should work abruptly to block it.
6. Usage of Cache
Store non-sensitive data in the cache memory to make quick access to the data. Caches having larger than 1MB size, use getExternalCacheDir() or getCacheDir().
While dealing with the shared preferences in Android, always use the private mode. It is one among the best Android Application Security method that you should implement.
7. Signature-Based Communication
Sending data between two different apps need much care and protection.
Solution: Use signature-based communication between the apps. Every time when you need to transfer the data, it won’t ask for your permission, rather it will check whether these apps are using the same signing key.
8. Transit Data
What will happen to your device data, when you lose it or else taken away by a robber? Do you think that your confidential data will be safe in that device?
Solution: Selective data erasure is the method of deleting the data from a device remotely. Thus the confidential data will be completely safe.
9. Updation and Testing
The hackers are continuously checking for the weaknesses in the apps. Once they find the vulnerabilities, they will get into the program data without losing a microsecond.
Solution: Update your software and Android Application Security tools under regular intervals of time. Practice penetration testing for the server-side checking.
10. Code Tamper Detection
How will you detect whether the viruses infect your libraries or application source codes?
Solution: Implement the anti-tamper techniques like anti-virus and Signature Verification Mechanisms to check the vulnerability of your application software.
Android apps require a high level of security concerns since the number of users, and the attackers are growing proportionally. Recent cases reported on the data leaks and malpractices are pointing to the vulnerabilities of mobile apps. So it is crucial to think about the Android Application Security concerns even at the stage of planning rather than implementing the development stages.
If you want to get more useful guides and insights on your next Android Application Security and Development, do contact our Mobile Application Development Team for the best service.