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Web Application Security Testing Cheat Sheet

Revision as of 13:05, 29 July 2012 by Raesene (talk | contribs) (Authorization)

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This cheat sheet provides a checklist of tasks to be performed when performing a blackbox security test of a web application.


This checklist is intended to be used as an aide memoire for experienced pentesters and should be used in conjunction with the OWASP Testing Guide. It will be updated as the Testing Guide v4 is progressed.

The intention is that this guide will be available as an XML document, with scripts that convert it into formats such as pdf, Media Wiki markup, HTML etc.

This will allow it to be consumed within security tools as well as being available in a format suitable for printing.

It is currently at a very early stage, but any feedback or offers of help will be appreciated.

The Checklist

Information Gathering

  • Manually explore the site
  • Spider/crawl for missed or hidden content
  • Check for files that expose content, such as robots.txt, sitemap.xml, .DS_Store
  • Check the caches of major search engines for publicly accessible sites
  • Perform Web Application Fingerprinting
  • Identify technologies used
  • Identify application entry points

Configuration Management

  • Check for commonly used application and administrative URLs
  • Check for old, backup and unreferenced files
  • Check HTTP methods supported and Cross Site Tracing (XST)
  • Test file extensions handling

Secure Transmission

  • Check SSL Version, Algorithms, Key length, Digital Cert. Validity
  • Check credentials only delivered over HTTPS
  • Check session tokens only delivered over HTTPS
  • Check if HTTP Strict Transport Security (HSTS) in use


  • Test for user enumeration
  • Test for authentication bypass
  • Test for bruteforce protection
  • Test password quality rules
  • Test remember me functionality
  • Test password reset
  • Test CAPTCHA
  • Test multi factor authentication
  • Test logout and cache management

Session Management

  • Establish how session management is handled in the application (eg, tokens in cookies, token in URL)
  • Check session tokens for cookie flags (httpOnly and secure)
  • Check session cookie scope
  • Check session timeout duration
  • Test to see if users can have multiple simultaneous sessions
  • Test session cookies for randomness
  • Confirm that new session tokens are issued on login


  • Test for path traversal
  • Test for bypassing authorization schema
  • Test for Privilege Escalation
  • Test for horizontal Access control problems (between two users at the same privilege level)

Data Validation

  • Test for Reflected Cross Site Scripting
  • Test for Stored Cross Site Scripting
  • Test for DOM based Cross Site Scripting
  • Test for Cross Site Flashing
  • Test for SQL Injection
  • Test for LDAP Injection
  • Test for ORM Injection
  • Test for XML Injection
  • Test for SSI Injection
  • Test for XPath Injection
  • Test for IMAP/SMTP Injection
  • Test for Code Injection
  • Test for Command Injection
  • Test for Buffer overflow
  • Test for incubated vulnerabilities
  • Test for HTTP Splitting/Smuggling

Denial of Service

  • TBA

Business Logic

  • TBA

Risky Functionality - File Uploads

  • Confirm that all file uploads have Anti-Virus scanning in-place.
  • Confirm that uploaded files are not directly accessible within the web root.

Authors and primary contributors

Simon Bennetts

Related articles

OWASP Testing Guide

Mozilla Web Security Verification

OWASP Cheat Sheets Project Homepage