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AppSecEU08 The Dynamic Taint Propagation Finding Vulnerabilities Without Attacking

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The purpose of this talk is to demonstrate a new technique for finding security vulnerabilities. This technique analyzes the flow of data throughout an application and identifies vulnerable paths. This type of approach has great potential to be used in conjunction with standard regression tests because regression tests generally exercise the application much more rigorously than typical security tests.

Until recently, dynamic testing was left to security teams and ethical hackers who used advanced tools, such as Web application scanners, to analyze running Web applications. However, many organizations are attempting to move security testing earlier in the development cycle. The QA group is a natural candidate, since it generally has the infrastructure in place to test applications for quality issues. Yet, the security testing tools currently available to QA were designed for penetration testers (since they require an in-depth knowledge of application security theory) and are not generally usable by QA professionals. As a result, very few QA groups have successfully deployed security testing solutions. That’s where Dynamic Taint Propagation comes into play. By modifying the program executable to carry more information about the origin of the data being processed, dynamic taint propagation allows testers to find vulnerabilities without disturbing the normal functionality of the program.