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Java is a popular programming language businesses use to create different software applications. However, given the prevalence of online risks, companies need to guarantee the safety of their Java-based apps.

By adhering to Java security best practices, businesses may safeguard their apps and data from potential cyberattacks. 

In this article, we will explore some Java security best practices to develop secure software.

Java Security Best Practices for Businesses 

Here are some Java security best practices for businesses to look forward to:

7 Best Java Security Practices for Businesses

1. Keep Your Java Code Simple

The advantages of Java’s static typing and established linguistic norms begin to wane as complexity increases. Like with any program you write, the more code you have, the greater the chance vulnerabilities may appear. For the benefit of security, keep your code basic by following these suggestions:

  • Using access modifiers, implementation details can be abstracted away from end users. Use Private as frequently and everywhere you can.
  • Your API should be categorized and made modular. 
  • Check your code release for the most recent vulnerabilities.

2. Use Libraries That are Proven and Popular

Open-source libraries are frequently used to speed development and lay the groundwork for innovation. It’s crucial to select libraries that are widely used and frequently updated.  Popularity encourages frequent updates and increases the number of concurrent users viewing a project. The more eyes on the project, the more probable flaws will be found and fixed before your code is pushed into production. 

Using open-source and tested libraries can decrease your software’s security risks and help you maintain Java security best practices in your codebase. 

3. Use Modules to Isolate Internal Code

Java provides access modifiers and module structure. Utilizing these features is a fantastic first step to writing Java code that is more reliable and secure. 

Java modules are a set of packages created for reuse. Aside from the public classes and interfaces in the exported packages, all classes and interfaces in a module’s packages are encapsulated. It means that although the classes and interfaces in other modules’ packages are public, programs outside the module cannot access them.

Instead, it can only access those public classes and interfaces. A module’s exported packages are shielded from code outside the module.

Create a module so that packages that support an API implementation are not exported, but packages that contain the public API are. It makes sure that harmful activity cannot access implementation-specific information. Verify that no security-sensitive classes or interfaces are exposed by going through all exported packages. It is simple to export more packages in the future. However, canceling an export might interfere with other exports.

4. Project Code Injection

Code injection is commonly referred to as Remote Code Execution (RCE). It is the practice of injecting malicious code into a codebase so it can run within the context of an application setting. It is a particularly popular cyberattack and typically leads to a rapid takeover since the injected code affects the active application.

Cybercriminals can introduce harmful code into an application using a variety of techniques. For example, attackers can add specifically made data files, change cookies, and more. The only way to avoid this is to ensure that the codebase contains no executable user input. Before making any changes to the codebase, all users must be vetted to ensure that only trustworthy individuals are taking part. 

You can also prevent code injection by treating everyone involved as unreliable. This is because scripts with untrusted executable code can be executed using APIs like javax.script. Additionally, it’s best to practice never including unreliable data on your command line when developing a new process. Aside from that, it is advised to send any data to new processes as encoded parameters in an inherited channel or temporary files. 

5. Data Encryption

If your application has to hold sensitive data, you must take precautions to prevent its exposure and eventual acquisition by unauthorized parties. It is where data encryption is useful. You must first choose between symmetric and asymmetric encryption. 

You must also determine how secure your data must be. It is because stronger encryption requires more time and CPU. The nicest aspect is that you don’t have to put the encryption system in place by hand. Several reliable libraries can complete the task for you.

For example, if you need to encrypt sensitive data such as credit card details, you will need a symmetric technique. It is necessary because you’ll need to be able to get the original numbers. It is advised to take the help of Java development services companies.

6. XPath Injections

XPath injections are similar to SQL injections as they can target websites that build XPath queries for XML data using the information provided by users. 

An attacker could obtain comprehensive knowledge of the XML data’s structure or access information that is not typically available by submitting malicious information to the website.

If the application uses XML data for authentication, these flaws can provide the attacker with more access rights. You can avoid XPath injection by using the same methods used to prevent SQL injection: 

  • Clean up all user input
  • Verify the data’s type, format, length, and content before sanitizing
  • Validation on both the client and the server sides of client-server applications
  • Test programs in-depth and pay close attention to user input

7. Decrease the Risk of Cross-Site Scripting

Cross-Site Scripting (XSS) attacks are a significant threat to web applications because they occur when an attacker uses a web application to deliver malicious code (often a browser-side script) to other users. These attacks are possible whenever a web program accepts user input and includes it in its output without verifying or encoding it. 

Use a proven library to HTML encode your output for HTML contexts and filter inputs with a whitelist of permitted characters to keep Java code applications secure and prevent XSS. If JavaScript is a key component of your stack, use JavaScript Unicode escapes.

While many of these standards are particularly relevant to Java applications, adhering to them regardless of your programming language can help keep your product safe and secure.

You should consider security during the design phase and code reviews when creating an application. You should also look for security holes in your Java code and use the Java security APIs and libraries.

Final Words

Most developers use Java to create applications because it is a well-liked programming language. Due to their rising popularity, Java-based applications are also being targeted by cybercriminals. Now, if you allow the attackers to discover gaps, they might abuse the program.

However, you can reduce the likelihood of attacks as much as possible and guarantee the security of your apps with the help of the above-mentioned Java security best practices.You can also hire Java developers for expert assistance.