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SQL Injection Attack- How to Protect Your Website from SQL Injection Attack

What is an SQL Injection attack?

A SQL injection (SQLi) is a type of attack which is consist of the injection or insertion of a SQL query from the client to the application. Basically, it is a web security weakness that allows a hacker to view the data of other users or any other application data. Most of the cases the hacker can delete or modify (Insert/Update) this data. This leads to changes in the application’s behavior or content. To affect the execution of predefined SQL commands, injection of the SQL commands is done into data-plane input. To make this attack smoothly within the web application or web page an attacker first finds weak user inputs. The hacker can also create input content, which is called a malicious payload. It is the main part of the attack. In the database execution of the SQL commands is done after sending these contents by the attacker. With PHP and ASP applications SQL injection is very common for the prevalence of older functional interfaces. 

There are mainly 3 types of SQL injection attack, which are-

  1. Out-of-band SQLi – By the web application when certain features are enabled on the database server, then the hacker can use this method. This method can be an alternative to the inferential SQLi and in-band techniques. This method can be implemented when the server is very slow or the hacker cannot gather the information or cannot use the same channel to begin the attack.  
  2. In-band SQLi – It is one of the most common types of SQLi attacks due to its efficiency and simplicity. It is also divided into 2 parts-
    • A. Union-based SQLi
    • B. error-based SQLi
  3. Blind SQL injection – It is the most common and oldest web security issue. After sending data payloads to the server, the hacker observes the behavior and response of the server. By doing this the hacker gets a chance to learn more about the structure of the website. As the data is not transferred to the hacker from the website, so it is known as Blind SQL injection. Though it is slower to execute but may also be very harmful. It is basically classified into 2 parts as-
    • A. Time-based
    • B. Boolean
SQL Injection Attack- How to Protect Your Website from SQL Injection Attack

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SQL Injection Attack- How to Protect Your Website from SQL Injection Attack

How to protect against SQL injection attacks?

The best way to stop SQL Injection attacks is parameterized queries and input validation including prepared statements. The developer has to clean all login forms and web form inputs. They also have to remove malicious code elements. To be on the safe side you can also turn off the visibility of database errors of your production sites. Below some tricks are given to give protection against this type of attack-

  1. Everyone who is associated with building the web application must be aware of these attacks and risks. Give them proper training,
  2. All user input should be assumed as untrusted,
  3. Always trust whitelists only during filter user input,
  4. Use most modern development technologies that can give better protection against SQLi,
  5. Regularly scan your web applications as SQL Injections may be spread by the developers or through modules/software/libraries.

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