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Java server (J2EE) code review

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Java EE Authentication Technologies

The Java EE framework contains a number of options from an authentication standpoint, such as,

  • Java Authentication and Authorization Service (JAAS)
  • Java Secure Socket Extensions (JSSE.)
    • Authentication and key exchange (RSA & DSA), SSL Authentication
  • Java 2 Security Model

Servlet Authentication

The Java API javax.servlet.HttpServlet contains a number of methods to receive HTTP requests. One fundamental practice in application security is not to hue HTTP GET during the authentication sequence (This is because sensitive credentials may be logged inadvertently on the web server). HttpServlet harbours methods such as doPost(), doPut(), doDelete(), doGet() to name a few. These methods can be used to process incomming HTTP requests.

During the course of Servlet processing, the HttpServlet.service() method is called before the "do" methods (doGet(), doPost(), etc.) therefore no significant processing should be placed in HttpServlet.service() prior to validating that the correct HTTP method was used to submit the transaction. Therefore it is prudent to examine that the correct http method (doPost(), doGet() has been over-ridden as opposed to service() method.

In the case of an authentication servlet it would be recommended to assure that the doGet() method has been overridden.

One solution to prevent HTTP GET requests is to use the HTTPServletRequest.getMethod() to examine if the method is POST.

{ if( (request.getMethod()).compareTo(“POST”)) { // POST submission processing . . . } else { // not POST throw new Exception(“HTTP method error”); }

J2EE Authorization Technologies

J2EE Session Management

J2EE Data Validation

J2EE Error Handling

Crypto in J2EE/Java