Web Development | 10-06-2021 | Ramavtar Sharma
Node.js is a widely used technology in web app development and like any other technology it is also exposed to many security risks. NPM or the Node.js Package Manager is globally accessible and is open source. These package managers are highly used in Node.js development and may have certain security issues that the Node.js developers might not be aware of. Therefore, it is recommended to hire Node.js experts from trustworthy third-party service providers.
To beware of the risks here are some best security practices to follow during Node.js development:
Validating user inputs:
Node.js development can be prone to XSS attacks and these can be easily avoided by validating the user inputs. XSS also known as Cross-Site Scripting lets the cyber criminals or hackers make changes to the client-side scripts. Vulnerable client-side scripts can cause data breaches. These attacks can be avoided by utilizing output encoding methods or tools such as the Jade engine with in-built encoding frameworks. Besides this, you can also go for XSS-filters or Validator.js.
Data leakage protection
Data leaks in web development are common. Hackers today are smart enough to breach the backend too. While development in Node.js only send the information to the backend that is needed. For example, retrieve limited information from the databases by using selected queries.
Using security linters
While coding, there are many insecure code practices that only experienced developers from top web development companies may find out. Even while writing the code, there are places where the developers may expose the code to security risks. To avoid such risks you can utilize linter plugins.There are various trustworthy linters available. These security linters send a notification whenever there is an insecure code in your development procedure.Hire Node.js developers who dedicatedly work on your project and know all these details to prevent any security risk.
Access exposure is one of the common risks in web apps but this can be taken care of. This generally happens when apps are not properly examined for user permissions to different URLs. The best way to get rid of this issue is by manually testing app modules and implementing access controls in Node.js applications that need particular user permissions. Middleware and rules to control the access are best executed on the server-side. This is because they reduce the chances of manipulating access permissions from the client-side. Developers must set up log access controlling and API rate restrictions that help the admins to be alert to take the necessary steps for avoiding any kind of data attack.
Secure deserialization is used especially in CSRF, i.e. Cross Site Request Forgery. This attack forces the users to carry out unnecessary action on the web apps.
This can be achieved when attackers use mischievous actions such as reaching out to the users by sending links through email or chat. CSRF modifies the entire app and may lead to serious financial loss of the user. To reduce such hacks or attacks, Node.js developers use anti-forgery tokens in Node.js. These tokens are utilized for preventing these attacks.
HTTP Response Headers
Many security attacks can be avoided by using HTTP headers while developing Node.js apps. Leveraging modules such as Helmet in various available Node.js frameworks is recommended because it adds more headers to the apps. Helmet is a collection of middleware functions. It is very helpful in eradicating security issues such as cross-site scripting attacks, man-in-the-middle attacks, and administration of secure server connections.
Logging and Monitoring
Logging and monitoring can also be used while maintaining the security of your Node.js application. There are hackers whose main purpose is to make your app unavailable but there are others who do not want to get noticed for a longer time. To avoid such issues log and metrics monitoring will help you detect any suspicious requests from your own applications.
Node.js libraries and frameworks are available for all. This means anybody can use them and make the changes. Although this is quite helpful during development but may lead to some security issues as mentioned above. It’s better to stay ahead of all the vulnerabilities and be ready with effective solutions. To know more and stay updated connect with our technology consultants.