There are many ways hackers could target web applications (websites which allow you to connect directly to software through browsers) to steal confidential information or introduce malicious codes or hijack your computer. These attacks exploit vulnerabilities within components like web apps such as content-management systems, web servers.
Web app attacks comprise the majority of security threats. In the last decade, attackers have honed their skills at identifying and exploiting vulnerabilities that affect the perimeter defenses of an application. Attackers can circumvent the all common defenses using methods like botnets, phishing and social engineering.
Phishing attacks make victims click on an email link with malware. This malware is downloaded to the victim’s system and grants attackers access to the system or devices. Botnets are a collection of infected and compromised connected devices, that attackers use to launch DDoS attacks and spread malware, as well as to perpetuate fraud on ads, and so on.
Directory (or path) traversal attacks exploit patterns of movement to gain access to the data on the website, its configuration files and databases. Protecting against this type of attack requires the proper sanitization of inputs.
SQL injection attacks target databases that stores critical data for websites and services by injecting malicious code which allows it to override security safeguards and disclose information that it normally would not. Attackers can execute commands, dump databases and more.
Cross-site scripting attacks (or XSS), insert malicious code on a trusted website to take over the browsers of users. This allows attackers to access session cookies as well as confidential information, impersonate a user alter content, and much more.