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Reporting

Performing the technical side of the assessment is only half of the overall assessment process. The final product is the production of a well written and informative report. A report should be easy to understand and should highlight all the risks found during the assessment phase. The report should appeal to both executive management and technical staff.

The report needs to have three major sections. It should be created in a manner that allows each separate section to be printed and given to the appropriate teams, such as the developers or system managers. The recommended sections are outlined below.

1. Executive Summary

The executive summary sums up the overall findings of the assessment and gives business managers and system owners a high level view of the vulnerabilities discovered. The language used should be more suited to people who are not technically aware and should include graphs or other charts which show the risk level. Keep in mind that executives will likely only have time to read this summary and will want two questions answered in plain language:

  1. What’s wrong?
  2. How do I fix it? You have one page to answer these questions.

The executive summary should plainly state that the vulnerabilities and their severity is an input to their organizational risk management process, not an outcome or remediation. It is safest to explain that tester does not understand the threats faced by the organization or business consequences if the vulnerabilities are exploited. This is the job of the risk professional who calculates risk levels based on this and other information. Risk management will typically be part of the organization’s IT Security Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) regime and this report will simply provide an input to that process.

2. Test Parameters

The Introduction should outline the parameters of the security testing, the findings and remediation. Some suggested section headings include:

2.1 Project Objective: This section outlines the project objectives and the expected outcome of the assessment.

2.2 Project Scope: This section outlines the agreed scope.

2.3 Project Schedule: This section outlines when the testing commenced and when it was completed.

2.4 Targets: This section lists the number of applications or targeted systems.

2.5 Limitations: This section outlines every limitation which was faced throughout the assessment. For example, limitations of project-focused tests, limitation in the security testing methods, performance or technical issues that the tester come across during the course of assessment, etc.

2.6 Findings Summary: This section outlines the vulnerabilities that were discovered during testing.

2.7 Remediation Summary: This section outlines the action plan for fixing the vulnerabilities that were discovered during testing.

3. Findings

The last section of the report includes detailed technical information about the vulnerabilities found and the actions needed to resolve them. This section is aimed at a technical level and should include all the necessary information for the technical teams to understand the issue and resolve it. Each finding should be clear and concise and give the reader of the report a full understanding of the issue at hand.

The findings section should include:

  • Screenshots and command lines to indicate what tasks were undertaken during the execution of the test case
  • The affected item
  • A technical description of the issue and the affected function or object
  • A section on resolving the issue
  • The severity rating, with vector notation if using CVSS (Industry standard vulnerability severity and risk rankings)

The following is the list of controls that were tested during the assessment:

Test ID Test Description Findings Severity Recommendations
WSTG-INFO Information Gathering      
WSTG-INFO-01 Conduct Search Engine Discovery and Reconnaissance for Information Leakage      
WSTG-INFO-02 Fingerprint Web Server      
WSTG-INFO-03 Review Webserver Metafiles for Information      
WSTG-INFO-04 Enumerate Applications on Webserver      
WSTG-INFO-05 Review Webpage Comments and Metadata for Information Leakage      
WSTG-INFO-06 Identify Application Entry Points      
WSTG-INFO-07 Map Execution Paths Through Application      
WSTG-INFO-09 Fingerprint Web Application Framework      
WSTG-INFO-09 Fingerprint Web Application      
WSTG-INFO-10 Map Application Architecture      
WSTG-CONF Configuration and Deploy Management Testing      
WSTG-CONF-01 Test Network Infrastructure Configuration      
WSTG-CONF-02 Test Application Platform Configuration      
WSTG-CONF-03 Test File Extensions Handling for Sensitive Information      
WSTG-CONF-04 Backup and Unreferenced Files for Sensitive Information      
WSTG-CONF-05 Enumerate Infrastructure and Application Admin Interfaces      
WSTG-CONF-06 Test HTTP Methods      
WSTG-CONF-07 Test HTTP Strict Transport Security      
WSTG-CONF-08 Test RIA Cross Domain Policy      
WSTG-CONF-09 Test File Permission      
WSTG-CONF-10 Test for Subdomain Takeover      
WSTG-CONF-11 Test Cloud Storage      
WSTG-IDNT Identity Management Testing      
WSTG-IDNT-01 Test Role Definitions      
WSTG-IDNT-02 Test User Registration Process      
WSTG-IDNT-03 Test Account Provisioning Process      
WSTG-IDNT-04 Testing for Account Enumeration and Guessable User Account      
WSTG-IDNT-05 Testing for Weak or Unenforced Username Policy      
WSTG-ATHN Authentication Testing      
WSTG-ATHN-01 Testing for Credentials Transported over an Encrypted Channel      
WSTG-ATHN-02 Testing for Default Credentials      
WSTG-ATHN-03 Testing for Weak Lock Out Mechanism      
WSTG-ATHN-04 Testing for Bypassing Authentication Schema      
WSTG-ATHN-05 Testing for Vulnerable Remember Password      
WSTG-ATHN-06 Testing for Browser Cache Weakness      
WSTG-ATHN-07 Testing for Weak Password Policy      
WSTG-ATHN-08 Testing for Weak Security Question Answer      
WSTG-ATHN-09 Testing for Weak Password Change or Reset Functionalities      
WSTG-ATHN-10 Testing for Weaker Authentication in Alternative Channel      
WSTG-ATHZ Authorization Testing      
WSTG-ATHZ-01 Testing Directory Traversal - File Include      
WSTG-ATHZ-02 Testing for Bypassing Authorization Schema      
WSTG-ATHZ-03 Testing for Privilege Escalation      
WSTG-ATHZ-04 Testing for Insecure Direct Object References      
WSTG-SESS Session Management Testing      
WSTG-SESS-01 Testing for Bypassing Session Management Schema      
WSTG-SESS-02 Testing for Cookies Attributes      
WSTG-SESS-03 Testing for Session Fixation      
WSTG-SESS-04 Testing for Exposed Session Variables      
WSTG-SESS-05 Testing for Cross Site Request Forgery      
WSTG-SESS-06 Testing for Logout Functionality      
WSTG-SESS-07 Test Session Timeout      
WSTG-SESS-08 Testing for Session Puzzling      
WSTG-INPV Input Validation Testing      
WSTG-INPV-01 Testing for Reflected Cross Site Scripting      
WSTG-INPV-02 Testing for Stored Cross Site Scripting      
WSTG-INPV-03 Testing for HTTP Verb Tampering      
WSTG-INPV-04 Testing for HTTP Parameter pollution      
WSTG-INPV-05 Testing for SQL Injection      
  Oracle      
  MySQL      
  SQL Server      
  PostgreSQL      
  MS Access      
  NoSQL      
  ORM      
  Client-side      
WSTG-INPV-06 Testing for LDAP Injection      
WSTG-INPV-07 Testing for XML Injection      
WSTG-INPV-08 Testing for SSI Injection      
WSTG-INPV-09 Testing for XPath Injection      
WSTG-INPV-10 IMAP/SMTP Injection      
WSTG-INPV-11 Testing for Code Injection      
  Testing for Local File Inclusion      
  Testing for Remote File Inclusion      
WSTG-INPV-12 Testing for Command Injection      
WSTG-INPV-13 Testing for Buffer overflow      
  Testing for Heap Overflow      
  Testing for Stack Overflow      
  Testing for Format String      
WSTG-INPV-14 Testing for Incubated Vulnerabilities      
WSTG-INPV-15 Testing for HTTP Splitting/Smuggling      
WSTG-INPV-16 Testing for HTTP Incoming Requests      
WSTG-INPV-17 Testing for Host Header Injection      
WSTG-INPV-18 Testing for Server-side Template Injection      
WSTG-ERRH Error Handling      
WSTG-ERRH-01 Analysis of Error Codes      
WSTG-ERRH-02 Analysis of Stack Traces      
WSTG-CRYP Cryptography      
WSTG-CRYP-01 Testing for Weak SSL TLS Ciphers Insufficient Transport Layer Protection      
WSTG-CRYP-02 Testing for Padding Oracle      
WSTG-CRYP-03 Testing for Sensitive Information Sent Via Unencrypted Channels      
WSTG-CRYP-04 Testing for Weak Encryption      
WSTG-BUSLOGIC Business Logic Testing      
WSTG-BUSL-01 Test Business Logic Data Validation      
WSTG-BUSL-02 Test Ability to Forge Requests      
WSTG-BUSL-03 Test Integrity Checks      
WSTG-BUSL-04 Test for Process Timing      
WSTG-BUSL-05 Test Number of Times a Function Can be Used Limits      
WSTG-BUSL-06 Testing for the Circumvention of Work Flows      
WSTG-BUSL-07 Test Defenses Against Application Misuse      
WSTG-BUSL-08 Test Upload of Unexpected File Types      
WSTG-BUSL-09 Test Upload of Malicious Files      
WSTG-CLIENT Client-side Testing      
WSTG-CLNT-01 Testing for DOM based Cross Site Scripting      
WSTG-CLNT-02 Testing for JavaScript Execution      
WSTG-CLNT-03 Testing for HTML Injection      
WSTG-CLNT-04 Testing for Client-side URL Redirect      
WSTG-CLNT-05 Testing for CSS Injection      
WSTG-CLNT-06 Testing for Client-side Resource Manipulation      
WSTG-CLNT-07 Test Cross Origin Resource Sharing      
WSTG-CLNT-08 Testing for Cross Site Flashing      
WSTG-CLNT-09 Testing for Clickjacking      
WSTG-CLNT-10 Testing WebSockets      
WSTG-CLNT-11 Test Web Messaging      
WSTG-CLNT-12 Test Local Storage      
WSTG-CLNT-13 Testing for Cross Site Script Inclusion      

Appendix

This section is often used to describe the commercial and open-source tools that were used in conducting the assessment. When custom scripts or code are utilized during the assessment, it should be disclosed in this section or noted as attachment. Customers appreciate when the methodology used by the consultants is included. It gives them an idea of the thoroughness of the assessment and what areas were included.