All You Need To Know About Cross-Site Request Forgery (CSRF)

Keep on Guard!


Cross-Site Request Forgery is a term you’ve properly heard in the context of web security or web hacking, but do you really know what it means? The OWASP definition is as follows:

Cross-Site Request Forgery (CSRF) is an attack that forces an end user to execute unwanted actions on a web application in which they’re currently authenticated. CSRF attacks specifically target state-changing requests, not theft of data, since the attacker has no way to see the response to the forged request.

All You Need To Know About Cross-Site Request Forgery (CSRF)

CSRF is often underrated on the risk spectrum but we’ve actually covered some pretty nasty incidents involving CSRF attacks:

CSRF Vulnerability in Twitter Allows Forced Following
Password Manager Security – LastPass, RoboForm Etc Are Not That Safe
Ubiquiti Wi-Fi Gear Hackable Via 1997 PHP Version

And some tools to help test for CSRF vulnerabilities:

IronWASP – Open Source Web Security Testing Platform
Hcon Security Testing Framework (HconSTF) v0.4 – Fire Base
xssless – An Automated XSS Payload Generator Written In Python

Acunetix has come out with a great article explaining it in more depth and also how you can prevent it, it contains information about:

  • Cross-site Request Forgery in GET requests
  • Cross-site Request Forgery in POST requests
  • Preventing CSRF Vulnerabilities
    • Anti-CSRF tokens
    • Same-site Cookies

For developers, you should pay special attention to the prevention part and make sure whatever you are building is safe.

There are two approaches by which Cross-site Request Forgery (CSRF) may be prevented – synchronizing the Cookie with an anti-CSRF token that has already been provided to the browser, or preventing the browser from sending Cookies to the web application in the first-place.

Check it out in full here: What is Cross-site Request Forgery?


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One Response to All You Need To Know About Cross-Site Request Forgery (CSRF)

  1. KG July 31, 2017 at 8:33 pm #

    That’s not much that I need to know, apperently

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