Cyber security

Runtime Application Self – Protection (RASP): 101


Applications have become a mature target for web prowlers looking to penetrate business. There is a good reason for that. The Black Hats know that if they can find and exploit a vulnerability in an application, they have a greater than one in three chance. A successful data breach. In addition, the likelihood of finding a vulnerability in an application is also good. 

According to the Contrast Security report, 90 percent of applications are not tested for vulnerabilities during their development and QA phases, and even more, are left unprotected during production. 

With so many vulnerable applications running in the enterprise, the challenge for network defenders is keeping those applications safe from attack. One possibility is to protect applications themselves by detecting and blocking attacks in real-time. The technology is called Runtime Application Self-Protection (RASP). 

Defining RASP

RASP is a technology that runs on a server and is activated when an application is running. It is designed to detect attacks on an application in real-time. When an application is running, RASP can protect it from malicious input or behavior by analyzing both the behavior of the application and the context of that behavior.

Monitoring of one’s behavior, attacks can be detected and countered immediately without human intervention. RASP integrates security into a running application wherever it is on a server. Intercepts all calls from the application to a system to ensure that they are secure and validates data requests directly from within. 

Additionally, The technology does not affect the design of the application as the detection and protection functions of RASP are performed on the server 

How RASP Functions

When a security event occurs in an application, RASP takes control of the application and corrects the problem. In diagnostic mode, RASP simply issues an alarm that something is wrong. In protection mode, an attempt is made to stop it; For example, you could stop executing statements against what appears to be a SQL injection attack. 

Other actions RASP could take include logging a user off, stopping an application from running, or warning the user or security personnel. Developers can implement RASP in several ways. You can access the technology via function calls. contained in the source code of an application, or they take an entire application and put it in a container that allows the application.

Going Beyond for Better App Security

RASP shares some properties with conventional firewalls. For example, they monitor traffic and content and can end sessions. However, firewalls are an edge technology and cannot see what is happening inside the perimeter. You have no idea what’s going on in the apps. Also the scope. With the advent of cloud computing and the proliferation of mobile devices, it has become more permeable. 

The attacker has penetrated the perimeter defenses Knows application logic, configuration, and data event flows This means that RASP can fend off attacks with high precision can distinguish between real attacks and legitimate requests for information, reducing false positives and allowing network defenders more time to combat real problems and less time pursuing digital security dead ends.

Self Protecting Apps 

In addition, the ability to protect an application’s data itself means that protection continues with the data from its inception to its destruction, which can be particularly useful for companies that need to meet compliance requirements since self-protected data is useless to data thieves are. You are not required to report a data breach if the stolen data is in a form that would make it illegible in the event of theft. 

As with Web Application Firewall (WAFs), RASP does not repair the source code of an application. However, it integrates with an application’s code-behind libraries and protects vulnerable areas of the application at the source level. 

The Price to Pay for BYOD

Mobile environments can also benefit from RASP. Depending on mobile operating systems, protecting applications from attacks is a dubious endeavor for companies. it can make BYOD less of a security challenge for an IT department. On the other hand, application performance can suffer when RASP is implemented.

Relying on Security is Better, But…

As RASP is still in its infancy, it is believed that it will be able to overcome its shortcomings and become the future of application security.

On the other hand, many of the attacks that RASP is designed to thwart are built into the source code of an application as security penetrates deeper into the development schedule. This reduces the need for RASP but is still useful for protecting legacy applications.

KloudLearn offers a free cyber security training program, that will provide you with comprehensive training on RASP. As well as other cybersecurity-related aspects which will help you design your security infrastructure. Protect your organization’s data and information by learning with the right learning program. Sign yourself up today. 


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