Systems & Software Academy

In-company only


Your application written in Java or C# works as intended, so you are done, right? But did you consider feeding in incorrect values? 16Gbs of data? A null? An apostrophe? Negative numbers, or specifically -2^32? Because that’s what the bad guys will do – and the list is far from complete.

Handling security needs a healthy level of paranoia, and this is what this course provides: a strong emotional engagement by lots of hand on labs and stories from real life, all to substantially improve code hygiene. Mistakes, consequences and best practices are our blood, sweat and tears.

The curriculum goes through the common Web application security issues following the OWASP Top Ten but goes far beyond it both in coverage and the details.All this is put in the context of the discussed programming languages, and extended by core programming issues, discussing security pitfalls of the used frameworks.

So that you are prepared for the forces of the dark side.

So that nothing unexpected happens.



  • The 'Web application security in Java' and C#'  training can be organized as in-company training.
  • If on-site training is not feasible, we can discuss providing a live, interactive online (virtual) or hybrid training. The standard program with 3-day content can also be delivered in 5 half days (from Monday to Friday).


  • Understanding Web application security issues;
  • Detailed analysis of the OWASP Top Ten elements;
  • Going beyond the low hanging fruits;
  • Explain approaches in handling security challenges in code;
  • Identify security vulnerabilities and their consequences;
  • Learn the best practices in how to avoid these mistakes.

Intended for

This course is intended for Java and C# developers working on Web applications.
Preparedness: General Java, C# and Web development.

Course schedule In-company only
Duration 4 consecutive days
Price per participant On request
Keep me posted

Day 1

Security basics

What is security?

Threat and risk

Types of threats against computer systems

Consequences of insecure software

Constraints and the market

Bugs, vulnerabilities and exploits

Categorization of bugs

  • Seven pernicious kingdoms
  • Common Weakness Enumeration (CWE)
  • CWE/SANS Top 25 Most Dangerous Software Errors
  • SEI Cert Secure Coding Guidelines
  • Vulnerabilities in the environment and the dependencies

The OWASP Top Ten

A1 - Injection

  • Injection principles
  • Injection attacks
  • SQL injection
  • SQL injection basics
  • Lab – SQL injection
  • Attack techniques
  • Content-based blind SQL injection
  • Time-based blind SQL injection
  • SQL injection best practices
  • Input validation
  • Output encoding
  • Parameterized queries
  • Other best practices
  • Lab – Using prepared statements in C#
  • Case study – Hacking Fortnite accounts
  • Code injection
  • Command injection
  • Lab – Command injection
  • Command injection best practices
  • Using Runtime.exec() in Java
  • Using ProcessBuilder in Java
  • Command injection best practices in C#
  • Lab – Command injection best practices in C#
  • Case study – Command injection
  • Script injection
  • Expression language injection
  • Injection best practices
  • Input validation
  • Output sanitization
  • Encoding and escaping the output
  • Encoding challenges

A2 - Broken Authentication

  • Authentication basics
  • Authentication weaknesses
  • Spoofing on the Web
  • Case study – PayPal two factor authentication bypass
  • User interface best practices
  • Session management
  • Session management essentials
  • Why do we protect session IDs – Session hijacking
  • Session ID best practices
  • Insufficient session expiration
  • Session fixation
  • Cross-site Request Forgery (CSRF)
  • Lab – Cross-site Request Forgery
  • CSRF best practices
  • Lab – CSRF protection with tokens
  • Cookie security
  • Cookie security best practices
  • Cookie parameters

Day 2

The OWASP Top Ten

A2 - Broken Authentication

  • Password management
  • Inbound password management
  • Storing account passwords
  • Plaintext passwords at Facebook
  • Lab – Why just hashing passwords is not enough?
  • Dictionary attacks and brute forcing
  • Salting
  • Adaptive hash functions for password storage
  • Password in transit
  • Password policy
  • Weak and strong passwords
  • Using passphrases
  • Lab – Applying a password policy
  • The Ashley Madison data breach
  • The dictionary attack
  • The ultimate attack
  • Exploitation of the results and the lessons learnt
  • Outbound password management
  • Hard coded passwords
  • Lab – Hardcoded password
  • Password in configuration file
  • Protecting sensitive information in memory
  • Challenges in protecting memory
  • Storing sensitive data in memory
  • Storing sensitive data in memory in C#
  • Lab – Storing sensitive data in memory with SecureString in C#

A3 - Sensitive Data Exposure

  • Information exposure
  • Exposure through extracted data and aggregation
  • System information leakage
  • Leaking system information
  • Relying on accessibility modifiers
  • Lab – Inappropriate protection by accessibility modifier
  • Information exposure best practices

A4 - XML External Entities (XXE)

  • DTD and the entities
  • Entity expansion
  • External Entity Attack (XXE)
  • File inclusion with external entities
  • Server-side request forgery with external entities
  • Lab – External entity attack
  • Case study – XXE attack against some popular services
  • Preventing XXE in Java
  • Preventing XXE in C#

A5 - Broken Access Control

  • Access control basics
  • Missing or improper authorization
  • Failure to restrict URL access
  • Confused deputy
  • Insecure direct object reference (IDOR)
  • Lab – Insecure Direct Object Reference
  • Authorization bypass through user-controlled keys
  • Case study – Authorization bypass on Facebook
  • File upload
  • Unrestricted file upload
  • Best practices
  • Lab – Unrestricted file upload

A6 - Security Misconfiguration

  • Configuration principles
  • Server misconfiguration
  • Configuration management
  • Java related components – best practices
  • Tomcat configuration
  • NET and IIS configuration best practices
  • NET configuration
  • IIS configuration

A7 - Cross-site Scripting (XSS)

  • Cross-site scripting basics
  • Cross-site scripting types
  • Persistent cross-site scripting
  • Reflected cross-site scripting
  • Client-side (DOM-based) cross-site scripting
  • Case study – Yahoo mail stored XSS
  • Lab – Reflected and stored XSS
  • XSS protection best practices
  • Protection principles - escaping
  • Additional protection layers
  • Client-side protection principles
  • XSS protection APIs in Java
  • XSS protection APIs in C#
  • Request validation in ASP.NET
  • Further XSS protection techniques in C#
  • Lab – XSS best practices in C#

Day 3

The OWASP Top Ten

A8 - Insecure Deserialization

  • Serialization and deserialization challenges
  • Deserializing untrusted streams
  • Deserializing best practices
  • Using ReadObject in Java
  • Sealed objects
  • Look ahead deserialization
  • Property Oriented Programming (POP)
  • POP best practices
  • Lab – Creating POP payload

A9 - Using Components with Known Vulnerabilities

  • Using vulnerable components
  • Assessing the environment
  • Hardening
  • Importing functionality from untrusted sources
  • Case study – The British Airways data breach
  • Vulnerability management
  • Patch management
  • Vulnerability databases and scanning tools
  • Vulnerability rating – CVSS
  • Lab – Finding vulnerabilities of used components
  • The build process and CI / CD
  • Dependency checking in Maven
  • Dependency checking in Cake
  • Lab – Detecting vulnerable components during the build

A10 - Insufficient Logging & Monitoring

  • Logging and monitoring principles
  • Logging
  • Insufficient logging
  • Logging best practices
  • Java logging best practices
  • Monitoring
  • Monitoring best practices

Web application security beyond the Top Ten

  • Client-side security
  • Same Origin Policy
  • Simple request
  • Preflight request
  • Bypassing the Same Origin Policy
  • Cross-origin resource sharing
  • Frame sandboxing
  • Clickjacking
  • Clickjacking protection best practices
  • Lab - Clickjacking
  • JavaScript hijacking

Common software security weaknesses

Input validation

  • Input validation principles
  • Blacklists and whitelists
  • Validation with regex
  • What to validate – the attack surface
  • When to validate – validation vs transformations
  • Where to validate – defense in depth
  • Server-side vs. client-side validation
  • Integer handling
  • Representing signed numbers
  • Integer visualization
  • Integer problems
  • Integer overflow
  • Lab – Integer overflow
  • Signed / unsigned confusion
  • Signed / unsigned confusion in Java
  • Lab – Signed / unsigned confusion
  • Integer truncation
  • Best practices
  • Upcasting
  • Precondition testing
  • Postcondition testing
  • Using big integer libraries
  • Integer handling in Java
  • Lab – Integer handling in Java
  • Integer handling in C#
  • Lab – Checked arithmetics in C#
  • Other numeric problems
  • Division by zero
  • Working with floating-point numbers in Java
  • Unsafe reflection
  • Reflection without validation
  • Lab – Unsafe reflection
  • Unsafe native code
  • Native code dependence
  • Lab – Unsafe JNI
  • Some other input validation problems

Security features

  • Java platform security
  • The Java programming language and runtime environment
  • Type safety and security
  • Security features of the JRE
  • The ClassLoader and the BytecodeVerifier
  • Application-level access control in Java
  • Permissions and the Security Manager
  • Privilege best practices
  • Lab – Working with permissions in Java
  • Role-based access control
  • Java Authentication and Authorization Services (JAAS)
  • Protecting Java code and applications
  • Code signing

Day 4

Common software security weaknesses

Security features

  • .NET platform security
  • Code Access Security
  • Evidences
  • Permissions
  • The Stack Walk
  • Lab – Code Access Security
  • The transparency model
  • Best practices
  • Lab – Experimenting with the transparency model
  • Role-based security
  • Principal and identity
  • Role-based permissions
  • Impersonation
  • Lab – Role-based security
  • Protecting .NET code and applications
  • Code signing

Time and state

  • Thread management best practices
  • Thread management best practices in Java
  • Thread Pools
  • Thread management best practices in C#
  • Race conditions
  • Race condition in object data members
  • Singleton member fields
  • Lab – Singleton member fields
  • File race condition
  • Time-of-check-to-time-of-usage (TOCTTOU)
  • Lab - TOCTTOU
  • Insecure temporary file
  • Database race conditions
  • Lab – Database race conditions
  • Avoiding race conditions in Java
  • Avoiding race conditions in C#
  • Mutual exclusion and locking
  • Deadlocks
  • Mutual exclusion and locking in Java
  • Lab – Locking in Java
  • Mutual exclusion and locking in C#
  • Lab – Locking in C#
  • Synchronization and thread safety
  • Synchronization and thread safety in Java
  • Synchronization and thread safety in C#


  • Error and exception handling principles
  • Error handling
  • Returning a misleading status code
  • Reachable assertion
  • Information exposure through error reporting
  • Missing custom error pages
  • Exception handling
  • In the catch block. And now what?
  • Empty catch block
  • Best practices for catch blocks
  • Overly broad throws
  • Catching NULL pointer exceptions
  • Improper completing of the finally block
  • Swallowed ThreadDeath
  • Checked exceptions escaping from finally
  • Throwing undeclared checked exceptions
  • Throwing RuntimeException, Exception, or Throwable
  • Lab – Exception handling mess
  • Exception handling in C#

Code quality

  • Data
  • Arrays and toString()
  • Initialization and cleanup
  • Uninitialized variable
  • Constructors and destructors
  • Class initialization cycles
  • Lab – Initialization cycles
  • Unreleased resource
  • Object oriented programming pitfalls
  • Accessibility modifiers
  • Overriding and accessibility modifiers in Java
  • Inheritance and overriding
  • Implementing equals()
  • Mutability
  • Readonly collections in C#
  • Lab – Mutable object
  • Cloning
  • Cloning sensitive classes – object hijacking
  • Object hijacking – best practices
  • Serialization

Wrap up

Secure coding principles

  • Principles of robust programming by Matt Bishop
  • Secure design principles of Saltzer and Schröder
  • Some more principles

And now what?

  • Further sources and readings
  • .NET and C# resources
  • Further labs and challenges to do

Platform: Windows.
Labs: Hands-on


After attending this training, participants receive a High Tech Institute certificate.

* Prices are subject to change. Price correction will be applied at the end of the year.