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OWASP Periodic Table of Vulnerabilities - Insufficient Authentication/Authorization

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Insufficient Authentication/Authorization

Root Cause Summary

Incorrect verification of identity and permissions can results to an attacker accessing sensitive data or functionality without properly being authenticated and/or authorized to do so.

Browser / Standards Solution


Perimeter Solution

Whenever possible, apply server-side Access Control Lists for those sections of sensitive data that should't be publicly accessible.

Generic Framework Solution

Use a generic, proven authentication framework.
Deny all access by default, and explicitly grant access per item.

Custom Framework Solution

Implement authorization checks to prevent anonymous access to sensitive data and functions.
Generate easy configurable role-based authentication and authorization policies.
Apply least-privilege principle to all transactions, requiring authentication and authorization wherever applicable.
Generate sensitive content on the fly instead of saving sensitive content whenever possible.
Use random filenames whenever possible and regularly clean up temporary files.
Store sensitive data outside of webroots.

Custom Code Solution


Discussion / Controversy


Guide to Authorization (OWASP)
Failure to Restrict URL Access (OWASP)
Insufficient Authentication (WASC)