3 Cybersecurity Concerns to Keep in Mind When Building an App - Social Media Explorer
3 Cybersecurity Concerns to Keep in Mind When Building an App
3 Cybersecurity Concerns to Keep in Mind When Building an App

If your business has taken steps towards creating a branded app, you’ll already know that the whole planning process, from brainstorming, defining the concept, to market research, requires many hours of effort and commitment. Having invested so many resources before even building the app, you’ll want to make sure that the end product will succeed.

According to a survey conducted by Mobile Ecosystem Forum (MEF) and AVG Technologies, more than half of mobile users worldwide would delete an app if there are any privacy or security concerns. An even more detrimental effect is that they would leave a negative review and warn their friends, which could lead users to question the company’s integrity. With that in mind, it’s vital to prioritize any security concerns during the development stage.

Below is a list of cybersecurity concerns you should keep in mind while building your app. For those considering building an app in the future, this list will also make a valuable resource for you.

Code Security

Each programming language has its security vulnerabilities, so it is best to learn what they are so that you can try to avoid them. Poorly written code will be easily exploited by hackers as there are usually multiple points of vulnerability and your code could be easily re-engineered by hackers with malicious intent (identity theft, data breach, etc.). 

A good practice is to start in a development environment that reinforces the best security practices. Secure frameworks should be used and prompts and notifications should be given when there is a security weakness. You can also hard code your app to prevent it from being reverse-engineered.

Rather than scanning your code in the end for any security issues, incorporate regular scans during the development process so that you can catch the flaws sooner.

Data Encryption

When an app transmits data without protection, it can be easily intercepted and stolen by hackers, they can effortlessly use this data for any (malicious) intent. By using encryption, you can protect data confidentiality as hackers that obtain the data would not be able to read it without the proper decryption key.

When developing your app, be mindful of the customer data being stored and protect it on the device with file-level encryption. You’ll also want to design an app that doesn’t save sensitive customer data locally on the device, but if it’s absolutely necessary, then you must take steps to ensure that the data is securely stored. It is also important to make sure that the decryption key isn’t hidden in the app’s code, or it will negate any encryption efforts.

User Authentication

Authentication attacks occur when an attacker attempts to guess a user’s login credentials to gain access to personal information. This is a major concern for user privacy and how users will be authenticated should be planned out diligently. 

Many apps such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, etc., enforce two-factor authentication. This requires users to provide an additional time-sensitive code sent to them by email or text before being able to log in.

A great option is to step-up the security features of your app by using Ipsidy to securely manage identities inside and outside of your enterprise at a low cost. With minimal integration, this full-service web-portal can help you seamlessly verify users with its mobile biometric multi-factor authentication, manage their biometric data in the cloud, and reduce fraud. 

Final Thoughts

It is imperative that your top priority is the prevention of security breaches. Mobile users are becoming more and more concerned with the safety of their data and will avoid apps with a reputation for privacy risks. 

Identify all possible scenarios of a cyberattack before building your app and keep a security checklist of the concerns mentioned above during development and deployment. Rigorously test the app when changes are made and stay updated with security trends so that you’re equipped to handle attacks promptly. If you perform these steps, you’ll be on your way to creating an app that’s safe and secure for your customers. 

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About the Author

Don Power
Don Power is a Director of Content Marketing. When it comes to content marketing, Don's been the Cyrano for a variety of organizations and delivered The King’s Speech himself as a professional speaker across North America. Don extends an open invitation to connect on LinkedIn or Twitter.

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