Web Security

Source Code Protection

Source code protection provides defense layers and control procedures against client-side attacks by closing security gaps and protecting the client-side of JavaScript applications from theft.

JavaScript code obfuscation is one of the ways to conceal a JavaScript application's inner workings from end users or competitors.

If your application’s source code gets stolen, it can cause damage to your organization.

Why is securing source code mandatory?

Source code security should be one of your priorities. Why?

JavaScript powers highly advanced apps in banking, e-commerce, healthcare, and many other high-stakes industries.

Despite its numerous advantages and business value, organizations must consider the changes to their threat model when using JavaScript-based web and mobile apps.

Source code is vital to building applications, making it valuable proprietary information. Still, it is forgotten among many other security considerations.

By default, client-side JavaScript code is exposed.
The end-user can modify and retrieve every piece of code, including code secrets, proprietary algorithms, and functions that handle sensitive data.

JavaScript code exposure is an open door to client-side attacks or incidents.

  • 97% of web applications use JavaScript.

  • 100% of FORTUNE 500 use JavaScript. 

  • Over 55% of mobile apps use JavaScript.

Finally, application security guides such as those from OWASP highlight the threats posed by reverse engineering and tampering with application source code, especially in applications that handle sensitive data or perform critical operations.

Threats within source code

Security is critical for any application that handles sensitive user information. Personal data is valuable to attackers, and it takes just one security gap for an app to facilitate a data breach.

If code is left unprotected, it can lead to:

  • Stolen user credentials;

  • Access to accounts with escalated privileges;

  • Further infection of devices that belong to the user;

  • Stolen intellectual property;

  • Damage the company's reputation.

So, what are the risks of JavaScript exposure?
We identify two main scenarios:

1. Debugging and Tampering

Application security guides, such as those from OWASP, highlight reverse engineering and tampering threats with application source code.

This is the case with JavaScript-powered applications, where attacks include intellectual property theft, automated abuse, piracy, and data exfiltration.

The attacker exploits security flaws on the client side to change the data, hijack the session, and make arbitrary JavaScript changes on the page, compromising the security of the original code.

2. Data Exfiltration and Other Client-Side Attacks

We have been seeing a growing surge of web supply chain attacks, such as Magecart attacks, flooding the web and leveraging the client side to exfiltrate data.

Going beyond the security risks of attackers targeting the JavaScript source code, we must consider the dangers of arbitrary JavaScript execution in the browser.

How to protect JavaScript from hackers?

If attackers have easy access to an app’s source code, they can distribute dozens or hundreds of copycats via third-party websites or apps.

To counter this and other security liabilities, explore resilient source code protection that obfuscates the source code to hinder reverse engineering and adds runtime defenses to prevent tampering to thwart copycats and lock attackers out.

JavaScript obfuscation aims to protect JavaScript code. It provides an essential layer of defense against client-side attacks by making it extremely hard for anyone to reverse-engineer the code. Then, you should add additional runtime defenses to increase the cost of attacks. Discover more about JavaScript obfuscator tools.

How can development teams ensure that their source code is protected?
The answer lies in source code protection, both JavaScript and native code, with a combination of obfuscation, environmental checks, and runtime defenses.

How Jcrambler can help you

Protect the client-side of your application.

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