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The main challenge of digital transformation: API security

Aware of the major role of APIs in the modernization and digital transformation of companies, it seems essential to us to come back today to the security issues of APIs.

The importance of the API

Digital transformation is a company's ability to dynamically integrate digital technology into all areas of its business. This digital transformation requires sending the right data to the right users through the right application. For many companies, their partners or subcontractors need to know in real time data such as prices, product stocks etc...

The API can offer the same functionalities as a graphical interface. If we want an API it is because we do not imagine a human that manipulates the interface but an automated program. Let's take the example of the Cloud and auto-scaling. A person who hosts an application wants to do it automatically. If the traffic becomes too high, it is necessary, through an orchestrator, to invoke new instances of the application and configure them automatically. An administrator cannot be behind the keyboard Humanly, an administrator cannot be behind a keyboard 24/7 in order to react in case of a peak load. Companies must therefore be able to provide interfaces both to request data automatically and to act on the system that is made available. And this is where the API comes in due to this need for real-time automation.

A high degree of API security is required

Although digital transformation is considered beneficial for many companies, they face a new challenge as they must now secure this new IT architecture, applications and operations that are being implemented.

Companies are currently applying the same model. However, as the number of APIs and web applications increases as a result of digital transformation, the risk of code gaps and vulnerabilities that can be exploited by hackers is also becoming increasingly high.

It is essential for companies to carry out a secure digital transformation. Indeed, it must be able to guarantee the user a safe navigation in a controlled environment in which the user's data will remain private and secure. It can be seen that when developing applications and internal codes, precipitation increases the risk of vulnerability. To face the proliferation of threats, API security is essential.

Product manager at Rohde & Schwarz Cybersecurity, Edouard Viot explains: "Generally speaking, when we talk about "Abuse APIs", about attacks on APIs, the biggest mistake is to trust the client software. Even if it is a mobile application, the hacker can analyze his network traffic, whether to cheat on his score in a game, but also on a B2B application to change a price, access other customers' data. There are some differences in protecting APIs and websites. Some vulnerabilities that exist on a website do not make much sense on APIs. Thus, the injection of JavaScript code from Cross-Site Scripting (XSS) attacks has no effect on APIs because there is no web browser to interpret this code. However, other Web vulnerabilities, such as SQL injection, also exist on the API side. »

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