In this article we look at certain best practices that companies can implement to avoid a SQL Injection attack on production database.
One of the greatest threat a SQL Server instance will always have is that of a SQL Injections. SQL Injection is rogue SQL injected in a SQL database by hackers, for multiple reasons. A SQL injection modifies the code of the databases, giving the hacker access to the database, and allowing them to make changes, however they like. This is done primarily for malicious reasons, and can vary in impacts, it can either destroy the whole database or parts of it. The database containing codes in the frontend, which can be exploited by the hacker, are usually the databases which become vulnerable to these attacks, given below are few techniques which can help you protect your databases against SQL injections.
- Use stored procedures – Allow applications for interacting with databases through stored procedures only, so that the database account the application makes use of, only requires permissions necessary to execute stored procedure and not to access other tables. This will prevent even a database vulnerable to injection attacks, from modifying the codes. However, this procedure cannot be your sole protection towards SQL injections, it can be a part of security strategy.
- Dynamic SQL only when indispensable – It is suggested to use a Dynamic SQL, only when there is no other option, it adds on to the risks of acquiring a SQL injection, by linking the command language with user input. If you escape all user input, you can reduce the risk of SQL injections in Dynamic SQL.
- Grant minimum database access – Even though you have limited the access of application by using stored procedures and are avoiding the use of Dynamic SQL, it is still important to allow minimum users access to the database. Always use the strategy of ‘Least Privilege’. All database accounts should only have access to minimum privileges, necessary for accessing the account.
- Testing and Monitoring to fight SQL injections – Never take protection against injections lightly, you might have followed all the above steps, but never forget to run your database codes for all the necessary checks, to ensure its safety. You can make use of code reviews which are created specifically for checking against any kind of vulnerabilities in SQL Server, regarding SQL injections and improper Dynamic SQL. As a part of the verification process, you can subject databases as well as the application to SQL injections, to ensure they are well protected.
SQL injections can be very harmful for your databases, and are the threats you should certainly protect your databases against. In SQL injections, a hacker aims to gain access to your database by injecting virus and modifying database codes. Multiple techniques to fight this grave threat have been described above for your convenience. Either or all of these can be used for keeping your databases safe from the threat of injections and other attacks. SQL Server consists of multiple in-built security features as well, which should be used along with these tips to protect against multiple security issues. Last but not the least, invest in a fix sql tool to deal with emergency situations.
Victor Simon is a data recovery expert in DataNumen, Inc., which is the world leader in data recovery technologies, including repair Access and sql recovery software products. For more information visit www.datanumen.com