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OWASP AppSec DC 2012/Unraveling some of the Mysteries around DOMbased XSS

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The Presentation

DOM-based XSS was first revealed to the world back in 2005 by Amit Klien, when it was an interesting theoretical vulnerability. In 2012, with the push towards Web 2.0 well into the mainstream, DOM-based XSS has become a very commonly uncovered and exploited vulnerability, but it's poorly understood.

This talk will focus on the full range of issues around DOM-based XSS. It will start with a discussion of the technical details of the vulnerability, the true nature of the risk it introduces (both likelihood and impact), and some new terminology and updated definitions about what truly is a DOM-based XSS vulnerability as compared to the standard Stored and Reflected XSS that the community is well aware of. It will then discuss the difficulties that security analysts face when trying to find DOM-based XSS flaws, and provide recommended analysis techniques that help move DOM-based XSS discovery from an art towards more of a science. And finally, it will discuss simple techniques for avoiding DOM-based XSS issues in the first place as well as how to mitigate issues that are uncovered during a security review.

This talk will include discussion of numerous open source resources that are available on this topic. OWASP has numerous articles on DOM-based XSS, including a definition article DOM_Based_XSS, an OWASP testing guide article Testing_for_DOM-based_Cross_site_scripting_(OWASP-DV-003), and the DOM_based_XSS_Prevention_Cheat_Sheet, and there are also other open source articles from leading researchers like Stefano Di Paola's Introduction to DOM-Based XSS as well. The speaker has already contributed to all of these OWASP articles and in preparation for this talk, plans to review and contribute additional enhancements to each of these articles in order to make the author's recommendations publically available to the web security community in a very broad manner far beyond just delivering this talk at AppSec DC. The talk will also survey how open source proxy tools like OWASP ZAP and WebScarab, along with Firebug and Chrome's developer tools can be used to track down DOM-based XSS issues within an application. Open source DOM-based XSS detection tools, such as DOMinator, will also be showcased in this talk.

This talk was delivered at the conference. The presentation is now available online here.

The Speakers

Dave Wichers

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Dave Wichers is a cofounder and the Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Aspect Security, a consulting firm focused exclusively on application security that supports a worldwide clientele with critical applications in the government, defense, financial, healthcare, services and retail sectors. Dave and his team at Aspect Security are founding members of the Open Web Application Security Project (OWASP), and have made major industry contributions including: the OWASP Top Ten, Enterprise Security API (ESAPI), and Application Security Verification Standard (ASVS). He is also a long time contributor to OWASP itself including being a member of the OWASP Board since it was formed in 2003 and established the OWASP conferences program through his role as OWASP Conferences Chair from 2005 through 2009.

Dave has over 20 years of experience in the information security field, and has focused exclusively on application security since 1998. At Aspect, in addition to his COO duties, he is Aspect's application security courseware lead, one of their chief instructors, and provides a wide variety of application security consulting services to Aspect's clients. This includes frequent application security verification efforts involving both code review and application penetration testing for both commercial and Government clients.

Prior to starting Aspect, he ran the Application Security Services Group at Exodus Communications. Dave has a Bachelors and Masters degree in Computer Science, is a CISSP, and a CISM.

For more details, see my full bio at: User:Wichers

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