With the growth in digital transformation, the API management market is set to grow by more than 30% by the year 2025 as more businesses build web APIs and consumers grow to rely on them for everything from mobile apps to customized digital services.

As part of strategic business planning, an API helps generate revenue by allowing customers access to the functionality of a website or computer program through custom applications.

As more and more businesses are implementing APIs, the risk of API attacks increases.

By 2022, Gartner predicted that API (Application Programming Interface) attacks would become the most common attack vector for enterprise web applications.

Cybercriminals are targeting APIs more aggressively than ever before, and businesses must take a proactive approach to API security to combat this new aggression.

API and The Business World

With integrating APIs into modern IT environments, businesses are becoming increasingly data-driven.

Just as a restaurant relies on an excellent chef, and a bandleader is a key to success, businesses increasingly depend on API and API integrations. Half of the online traffic is generated by users searching on companies' publicly available APIs. All this access is expected to grow by 37% in 2022.

APIs can also be added to existing applications without changing the basic foundation of the software, allowing organizations to quickly develop and deploy a diverse combination of functionalities to suit specific business purposes or user groups without changing the application's core structure.

API Fuels

  • Cities with newer 5G wireless networks and older wireless technologies are increasingly being outfitted with high-capacity IoT endpoints - everything from fingerprint readers to smart street lamps - expanding the network's usage opportunities.
  • According to a projection, more than 30.9 billion IoT are expected to be in use worldwide by 2025, and the number continues to rise every year.
  • Not only is the cloud-based office productivity software market expected to reach $50.7 billion by 2026, but it is also predicted to rise throughout 2022

Rise Of Growing API Attacks

Though enterprises are taking note of the enormous potential behind APIs (and API releases), their number being launched and produced is increasing at an astronomical rate. This trend has been linked to the increasing relevance of software in today's world.

91% of businesses that have implemented APIs in their business systems experienced incidents related to breaches in security and cyber-attacks. Most of these businesses had to deal with a major incident within the year prior. In order to obtain full benefits of APIs, businesses need to strike accurate and fully managed API security solutions.

So, What 3 Key Risks API Security Poses?

Misconfigured APIs: Right from misconfigured HTTP headers, insecure default configurations to verbose error messages, etc., the ultimate weapon of choice for hackers is the unmanaged and unsecured API vulnerability exploit, which can silently creep into the most unsuspecting places.

Malware Attacks: Starts from taxing the web API memory to send a lot of information per request, malware attacks like DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) attacks, SQL injection, MITM-in-the-middle attacks, or Credential stuffing to let anyone get pass-through authentication, etc. hacked, broken or exposed APIs are never-ending stories to extract data with ease.

Inadequate Assets Management: The older, less secure versions of an API leave them vulnerable to attack and data breaches. Brute-force attacks can also significantly impact an API by exhausting all login combinations and causing the server to get overloaded or even temporarily disabled.

3 API Security Best Practices in 2022

1 — Apply Zero Trust to API Security

With the zero-trust approach, application security teams should empower their endpoints equally to a state of threat prevention across all three, i.e., authentication, authorization, and threat prevention. This will make it more difficult for hackers to breach your online properties.

2 — Understand And Identify API Spikes or Drops Behaviors and Interactions for Vulnerabilities

Understand and further explore API logging to ensure the security and stability of your API.

When trying to protect your API or its users from security issues, it's essential to keep an eye on anything suspicious. Security issues usually appear in abnormal behavior, which doesn't seem quite right. You can identify and address these threats before they cause harm to your API or anyone using the platform.

3 — Delegate and Combine Authentication and Authorization

Generally, API developers should implement the principle of privilege separation. This general programming practice allows users to access only the specific resources and methods necessary for their role in the application.

API Monitoring is a critical part of API deployment, but it's also important to consider how you grant users access to your API. Simply verifying a user's identity isn't sufficient; there will likely be resources that only certain users are allowed to interact with and specific methods they must use.

Authentication is necessary for securely verifying the user using an API, and authorization is concerned with what data they have access to (within a request as a token).

The Way Forward

Your web application or API is no different like a castle that needs a defensive moat to protect the inhabitants inside its walls. It needs protection from outside intruders and malicious agents looking to take advantage of weaknesses; that's where Indusface WAF enters the picture.

With AppTrana, you get up-to-date and regular API threats review for any anomalies or suspicious usage patterns of the OWASP Top 10 Vulnerabilities and beyond.

If you want smooth decision-making for API vulnerability detection and protection trends, look no further than AppTrana.

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