Top 10 NodeJS Security Best Practices in 2022
In the words of Window Snyder- “one single vulnerability is all a Hacker needs.” The “available to everyone” nature of open-source apps causes licensing and security issues. To identify open-source components in Node.js, you must inspect the NPM index files that explain the dependencies. Despite this, no open-source components have been utilized in these index files.
Repurposing open-source projects can speed up development, lower costs, and expand functionality. This happens all the time. As a result, code snippets, functions, and techniques can be embedded into files by both commercial and open-source developers. The official Node.js license is not used in many Node.js web development projects.
Circling back to the topic at hand, Node.js reports quite a few security issues even though it is inherently a robust framework. It is, however, the perfect target of Black Hat Hackers, given its open-source nature.
So what does this mean? Should we stop using Node.js? Is it far too risky to build an enterprise application?
The answer to both these questions is a resounding NO!
All you need to do is know what may come your way, deploy best practices from the get-go, and be equipped to deal with every obstacle. Join me as I delve into the top seven Node.js issues and security best practices that can be deployed as powerful preventive measures. So without further ado, let’s get to it.
10 Best-Practice Recommendations for Node.js Development
Man-in-the-middle, code injection, and other complex persistent threats are all possible because of Node.js’s security weaknesses. The following is a list of potential Node.js security concerns and possible fixes:
1. Use Input Validation to Prevent Cross-Site Scripting (XSS) Attacks
The effect is that hackers can run code that’s similar to the product name by typing “JS code” into the search field.
The user’s input can be viewed. XSS attacks in Node.js can be prevented by using output encoding methods or tools like the Jade engine, which has built-in encoding frameworks. Additionally, you can utilize XSS filters or Validatorjs to achieve this.
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2. Minimize the Risk of Data Breach
Don’t just rely on what the frontend gives you; also, think about what you’ll give it. Sending all of an object’s information to the frontend and only displaying what you want is possible. A hacker can still readily uncover the obfuscated information that was sent from the backend.
No more than what is absolutely necessary should be sent. Using the database, you can get just the first and last names you need.
3. Keep Your Base Safe by Using Security Liners
It is possible to run a vulnerability scan on a regular basis. In addition, you may identify some of the most common security issues while you write the code.
For example, plugins like eslint-plugin-security can be used to write code lints. Insecure programming methods can be flagged by this type of security linter.
4. Maintain Access Control over All Requests
This is typically tied to the degree to which an app’s user permissions to specific URLs or areas within it have been extensively evaluated. If you want restricted areas of the application, like the administrator’s dashboard, to be accessible by everybody, you can employ access exposure to do so.
The only method to eliminate this issue is to conduct manual testing of app modules that require certain user permissions. Log access control and API rate limitation are essential. Here, administrators receive notifications when it is time to take action that will lessen the risk of attack or malfunction.
5. Secure Deserialization Methods
As an example of unsafe deserialization, remote code implementation or API calls are used to apply faulty objects. As a result of this assault, end-users are compelled to undertake undesired behaviors on legitimate websites.
Cross-site Request Forgery (CSRF) attacks target changes in app state requests because the hacker can’t see the response of the app to the faked request. Victims can be tricked into completing odd actions by attackers who distribute links via email or chat. An email id transformation and subsequent fund transfer can be compelled by using CSRF.
In order to limit the number of hacks and attacks, you must guard against CSRF attacks. For this purpose, anti-forgery tokens in Node.js can be employed. The use of anti-CSRF tokens helps protect against one-click attacks and verifies the legitimacy of user requests.
6. Make Use of HTTP Response Headers
Express is one popular framework from the list of top Node.js frameworks. When it came to Express, however, no security considerations were taken into account. As a result, outdated versions of Express could be a security concern for users.
You must use regularly maintained and updated versions of programs if you want to keep them safe. In fact, many less common attacks can be prevented by including additional security-related HTTP headers in your app. If you want to increase API security, you could use well-known frameworks like CORS, but you should also consider Helmet, which includes additional headers.
Apps written in Express or Node.js can be protected with Helmet. One line of code runs 11 distinct header-based security systems for you, thanks to a set of middleware functions. Cross-site scripting, man-in-the-middle, and secure server connection management are all included in this package.
7. Incorporate Fluid into the Development of Patch Pipelines
When web servers or apps are left unprotected, or with insufficient security requirements, security misconfiguration vulnerabilities develop. This issue affects multiple layers of the app stack (app containers, database, server, and so on).
Misconfigured security credentials, such as staging or development area credentials, are often exploited using weak build pipelines. As a result, the app is vulnerable to attack because it is being used as a staging or development area.
If the default package settings and user account passwords are utilized in Node.js apps, hackers can execute brute-force dictionary attacks against login forms that have weak credentials.
Instead, default package settings provide security holes for malevolent hackers to exploit.
In order to create complicated and unique systems, Node.js modules and frameworks are required, which exposes these systems to various security issues.
If app developers keep up with the latest Node.js security practices, they will be able to build more secure solutions for users. I trust that this article proves informative. Until next time, happy developing!