mobile app development security

10 Common Security Mistakes That Mobile App Developers Make

There are several common security mistakes that are routinely made by mobile app developers. Online attackers routinely rely on weak security infrastructure to seize bank account data, credit card numbers, or sensitive personal information. Inadequate mobile application security can also trigger catastrophic corporate data leaks for businesses across the globe. Nowadays, rarely one day goes by without another sophisticated mobile application falling prey to experienced online hackers. As a mobile developer yourself, you need to be aware of the most common security mistakes that can potentially weaken your system. This way, you can defend your application from unauthorized access, promote information security, and harden your security controls. Plus, these tactics will help inspire stakeholder confidence and facilitate business continuity management. To help you get started today, read on to learn about the most common security mistakes that mobile app developers make.

Weak Encryption

First and foremost, developers often fail to use strong encryption standards, protocols, and strategies. Essentially, encryption refers to the process of converting digital information into an unrecognizable code. This is widely used to deter hackers and prevent unauthorized access to your system. In fact, recent reports have indicated that encryption will take center stage this year. Security mistakes related to encryption can increase your risk of “man-in-the-middle” attacks, which are frequently called eavesdropping hacks. By taking the time to address encryption, you can maximize user privacy and securely distribute information. At the same time, you can lower your risk of ransomware blackmail as well as identity theft attacks. In short, weak encryption is one of the most common security mistakes that is routinely offended by mobile app developers.

Inexperienced Development Teams

In addition, many mobile app development teams also suffer from a lack of training. Sufficient training is essential to ensure app engineers can work strategically, precisely, and knowledgably. If your team is currently not experienced, there are plenty of ways to expand their current capabilities. For example, encourage team members to participate in online DevOps training classes. These are the perfect way to sharpen your DevOps skills, learn more about DevSecOps, and sharpen your C/C++ capabilities. You may even want to sign up for a few informative development classes yourself. Whether you are already an expert or a beginner in mobile app development, there is always more to learn. Certainly, inexperienced development teams often trigger major security mistakes for mobile application development pipelines.

Lack Of Code Commenting and Structuring

Next, lack of code commenting, and structuring is another common security mistake committed by mobile app developers. Not commenting can cause major problems that sacrifice your app’s integrity in the future. This often leads to major problems when updating your software. In this regard, it is essential that your developers place the proper code comments wherever necessary. Additionally, they must properly structure the code to keep it from looking unorganized, sloppy, or messy. The cleanliness of your source code is nearly as important as the clarity of your user interface (UI). Surely, lack of code commenting, and structuring is a common security mistake that mobile app developers make.

Poor Incident Response

Additionally, many mobile app development teams do not currently have strong incident response (IR) standards in place. There’s no way to ensure your product will be 100-percent secure from hackers and unwanted intrusions. When these occur, strong IR protocols are essential to maintain productivity and restore system integrity. To stay safe, you need to develop contingency plans related to disaster recovery, incident monitoring, and suspicious activity detection. These are vital to limit how far reaching, hazardous, or damaging a potential attack may be. Indeed, poor incident response is one of the most common security mistakes that mobile app developers make.

Inadequate Vulnerability Protection

Also, mobile app developers must be well-versed in effective vulnerability protection and defense strategies. Mistakes in vulnerability protection can lead to critical issues related to system performance, integrity, and speed. Therefore, cyber security and vulnerability protection needs to be a top-priority throughout building your product. Additionally, your team needs to be using the latest tools, patches, and frameworks to escalate security standards. In many cases, developers are responsible for their own programming environments. In these instances, they may be unaware of the regular updates and requirements needed. Absolutely, inadequate vulnerability protection is an incredibly common mobile app development security mistake.

Insufficient Code Testing

At the same time, mobile applications can seriously suffer if the security and code is not being tested by developers. Coders either believe testing takes too much time or think quality assurance (QA) is not part of their job. However, failing to perform application testing can lead to a great deal of problems in the future. For example, weak testing often leads to catastrophic stakeholder emergencies, insufficient stakeholder confidence, and poor user experiences (UX). At a minimum, you should conduct functional testing before your system is deployed. This includes everything from performance, integration, and beta regression testing. In addition, you need to run comprehensive non-functional system inspections. This includes everything from compliance, localization, volume, and smoke testing. By conducting these procedures, you can promote organization, efficiency, and productivity across your pipeline. Definitely, insufficient code testing is a fairly common security mistake made by mobile app developers.

Substandard Authentication and Authorization Protocols

Teams should also be encouraged to strengthen mobile app security with authentication and authorization protocols. Simply put, authentication refers to the processes that verify a person is truly a specific user. Optimizing mobile app authentication typically requires integrating unguessable security credentials like fingerprint scans, strong passwords and two-factor authentication (2FA). Authorization, on the other hand, confirms that specific app users have access to the specific resources or required actions. Overall, authentication focuses on addressing who a user is, while authorization emphasizes what those specified entities can access. Clearly, substandard authentication and authorization protocols are one of the most common security mistakes by mobile app developers.

Trusting Third-Party Code

Moreover, mobile app programmers should avoid trusting third-party code at all costs. Mobile app engineers rarely build their products entirely from scratch. In many cases, these programs are developed from a mix of code written by other developers and third-party app engineers. When you obtain code from a third-party, you encounter many risks related to encryption, graphical interfaces, and SQL injections. These third-party elements are known to be filled with dangerous vulnerabilities, which can greatly impact the integrity of your mobile app. If you do insist on using code from a third-party, it should be thoroughly inspected with in-depth security audits beforehand. In short, trusting third-party code is a common security mistake from mobile app developers.

Lacking Passwords and Backdoor Accounts

Furthermore, all successful mobile applications need to have strong passwords and backdoor accounts. Administrative backdoor accounts are routinely added during testing, system review, or stakeholder approval. Once they are no longer needed, developers often forget to close out these accounts. In many cases, nobody will ever find these old accounts anyways. However, there are always rare instances where they can be discovered by malicious online cyber attackers. Therefore, it is essential to routinely update the login credentials across your various administrative accounts. Notably, lacking passwords and backdoor account are a major security mistake for mobile app developers.

Not Following a Consistent Coding Style

Not to mention, mobile app developers need to write code in a consistent writing style. Written code must have consistent indentation, spacing, and formatting. Plus, you should use a direct, clear convention for naming your various functions. Also, you want to ensure the names you choose a meaningful, concise, and easy-to-understand. Of course, this is important to make your mobile application more readable, maintainable, and scalable. At the same time, it will keep your app safe from security threats once deployed. In short, not following a consistent writing style is one of the most common mobile app development security mistakes.

There are several common security mistakes that are routinely made by mobile application developers. First off, development teams routinely face security issues with weak encryption. In addition, teams may suffer from inexperienced coders, developers, and QA analysts. Also, ensure software products have full code commenting and structuring. Of course, you also need to have a strong set of incident response (IR) strategies. Without these in place, you risk catastrophic corporate emergencies and a loss of stakeholder confidence. At the same time, modern teams strive to maximize protection from dangerous software vulnerabilities. Certainly, insufficient code testing is a major security threat for today’s programmers.

Moreover, you also must equip your product with strong authentication and authorization protocols. Furthermore, ensure that nobody on your team is committed to trusting unverified third-party code. Additionally, lacking passwords and backdoor accounts are also major digital security threats. Without strong passwords, you put your system at risk for brute attacks from experienced online cyber criminals. Definitely, you should also aim to have your team follow a consistent writing style. Follow the points highlighted above to learn about the most common security mistakes that mobile app developers make.

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