Threat Trends

4 mins

Top Software Weaknesses: Unmasking the Most Persistent Threats in 2023

In the realm of software vulnerabilities, the Common Weakness Enumeration (CWE) offers an important lens through its Top 25 Most Dangerous Software Weaknesses. Over the span of the last five publications (2019-2023), 15 weaknesses have maintained a consistent presence on this list. Threat actors persistently refine their tools and techniques, exploiting prevalent weaknesses in software that pose systemic risks to organizations. Their unwavering status implies that, despite community awareness, these vulnerabilities persist as significant challenges. 

"A more focused training effort is needed to enhance developer practices to ensure that these weaknesses do not continue to introduce unnecessary risk to customer data and services."

- The Mitre Corporation, Common Weakness Enumeration

This compilation results from analyzing public vulnerability data in the National Vulnerability Database (NVD), examining root cause mappings to CWE weaknesses over the past two years. A thorough review of 43,996 CVE entries was conducted, assigning scores based on prevalence and severity. You can also learn more about the methodology

Although not on the list, IDOR is emerging as another prominent figure in the realm of software vulnerabilities. IDOR refers to a type of access control vulnerability that occurs when an application allows users to manipulate identifiers, such as URLs or parameters, to access or modify objects they should not have access to. This vulnerability can lead to unauthorized access to sensitive data or actions.

For deeper insights into the facts and figures of the current threat landscape, explore this comprehensive report.

Additional Resources

Integrating CISA insights with CWE data on cybersecurity misconfigurations and threats provides a more holistic view of potential risks and vulnerabilities in software systems.

The Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) released an analysis from their red and blue teaming assessment of the top software misconfigurations on October 5th 2023. The analysis provides further evidence that there is systemic weakness and failure to implement secure design practices in many software applications.

NSA and CISA gathered the advisory data through assessments and engagements in diverse sectors, including DoD, FCEB, SLTT governments, and the private sector. Key teams, such as NSA DNO, CISA VM, and CISA Hunt and Incident Response, played crucial roles in these efforts.

How Can Proactive Security Help

Hadrian, with its advanced capabilities in automated offensive security, plays a crucial role in addressing software vulnerabilities. By leveraging the Orchestrator AI, Hadrian thoroughly assesses the landscape, identifying and validating vulnerabilities such as OWASP Top Ten risks, known and zero-day vulnerabilities, and misconfigured services. The platform goes beyond traditional approaches, employing machine learning algorithms to continuously monitor and discover changes in the attack surface. 

Hadrian's automated penetration testing mimics real-world cyberattacks, ensuring a proactive stance against potential exploits in software systems. Furthermore, its risk-based vulnerability management offers intelligent prioritization, allowing organizations to focus on and mitigate the most critical software weaknesses, thereby enhancing overall cybersecurity posture.

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