OAT-019 Account Creation

Account Creation is an automated threat. The OWASP Automated Threat Handbook - Web Applications (pdf, print), an output of the OWASP Automated Threats to Web Applications Project, provides a fuller guide to each threat, detection methods and countermeasures. The threat identification chart helps to correctly identify the automated threat.


OWASP Automated Threat (OAT) Identity Number


Threat Event Name

Account Creation

Summary Defining Characteristics

Create multiple accounts for subsequent misuse.

Indicative Diagram

Indicative diagram for OAT-019


Bulk account creation, and sometimes profile population, by using the application’s account sign-up processes. The accounts are subsequently misused for generating content spam, laundering cash and goods, spreading malware, a ecting reputation, causing mischief, and skewing search engine optimisation (SEO), reviews and surveys.

Account Creation generates new accounts - see OAT-007 Credential Cracking and OAT-008 Credential Stuffing for threat events that use existing accounts.

Other Names and Examples

Account pharming; Fake account; Fake social media account creation; Impersonator bot; Massive account registration; New account creation; Registering many user accounts

See Also


CAPEC Category / Attack Pattern IDs

  • 210 Abuse of Functionality

CWE Base / Class / Variant IDs

  • 799 Improper Control of Interaction Frequency
  • 837 Improper Enforcement of a Single, Unique Action
  • 841 Improper Enforcement of Behavioral Workflow

WASC Threat IDs

  • 21 Insufficient Anti-Automation
  • 42 Abuse of Functionality

OWASP Attack Category / Attack IDs

  • Abuse of Functionality

Return to OWASP Automated Threats to Web Applications Project.