Security Headers describes HTTP response headers that can be used to increase the security of your application. In other words, these headers instruct the web browser to activate security precautions that protect your site against attacks.
Strict Transport Security is a web security policy mechanism. It helps safeguard websites against protocol downgrade attacks and cookie hijacking. This policy allows web servers to interact, using secure HTTPS connections and never via insecure HTTP protocol.
The X-Frame-Options response header improves the protection of web applications against Clickjacking. This disables the iframes on the site and does not allow others to embed your content.
X-XSS-Protection allows developers to change the behavior of the Cross-Site Scripting security filters. These filters identify unsafe HTML input and either block the site from loading or remove potentially malicious scripts.
This header is typically used to control the MIME type sniffing function in web browsers. If the Content-Type header is blank or missing, the browser identifies the content and attempts to display the source in an appropriate way.
This header provides an extra layer of security against multiple vulnerabilities such as XSS, Clickjacking, Protocol Downgrading, and Frame Injection. If enabled, this has a significant impact on the way browsers render pages.
A cross-domain policy file is an XML document that grants a web client, such as Adobe Flash Player or Adobe Acrobat (though not necessarily limited to these), permission to handle data across domains.
The Referrer-Policy HTTP header governs which referrer information, sent in the Referrer header, should be included with requests made. This security header can be included on communication from the website’s server to a client.
The Feature-Policy header provides a mechanism to allow and deny the use of browser features and APIs in its own frame.
The Access-Control-Allow-Origin header is included in the response from one website to a request originating from another website. It also identifies the permitted origin of the request.
This is a response-type header that prevents the use of wrongly issued certificates for a site and ensures they do not go unnoticed.
This response header is a security mechanism that allows HTTPS websites to resist impersonation by attackers using misissued or fraudulent certificates.
For example, the Strict-Transport-Security header is rated. The explanation follows:
|max-age < 10368000 (120 days)||At risk|
|max-age >= 10368000 and max-age < 31536000||Secure|
|max-age >= 31536000 (1 year)||Very Secure|
The Strict-Transport-Security is rated only if the request succeeds (HTTP 200 OK).
HTTP response headers have information including the date, size, and type of file the server is sending back to the browser upon receiving an HTTP request.
All the headers received in HTTP response are available for analysis.
For secure communication, the TLS client and server need to agree on the cryptographic algorithms and keys that both use for secured connection.
However, there are possible combinations of numerous choices. TLS allows only certain well-defined combinations of these choices, known as Cipher Suites.
Discovery identifies all the cipher suites supported by the server and classifies them into the Insecure, Weak, or Secure category, based on industry best practices.
The “Secure” category comprises of recommended cipher suites which are safe to use.