Securing JEE Web Applications (SJWA)

Course Description Schedule Course Outline

About this Course

In this course, you will thoroughly examine best practices for defensively coding JEE web applications, including XML processing and web services. You will repeatedly attack and then defend various assets associated with a fully-functional web application. This hands-on approach drives home the mechanics of how to secure JEE web applications in the most practical of terms.

This course quickly introduces you to the most common security vulnerabilities faced by web applications today. Each vulnerability is examined from a Java/JEE perspective through a process of describing the threat and attack mechanisms, recognizing associated vulnerabilities, and, finally, designing, implementing and testing effective defenses. In many cases, there are labs that reinforce these concepts with real vulnerabilities and attacks. You will then be challenged to design and implement the layered defenses you will need in defending your own applications. This class is “technology-centric”, designed to train attendees in essential secure coding and development skills, coupling the most current, effective techniques with the soundest industry practices. This workshop is about 50% dynamic lab exercises and 50% lecture.

Students who attend Securing JEE Web Applications will leave the course armed with the skills required to recognize actual and potential software vulnerabilities, implement defenses for those vulnerabilities, and test those defenses for sufficiency.

Who should attend

  • Securing JEE Web Applications is a lab-intensive, hands-on JEE security training course, essential for experienced enterprise developers who need to produce secure JEE-based web applications.

Class Prerequisites

  • Familiarity with Java and JEE is required
  • Real world programming experience is highly recommended (approximately 6 months to a year of Java and JEE working knowledge)

What You Will Learn

Working in a lab-intensive, hands-on programming environment led by our security experts, students will learn to:

  • Understand potential sources for untrusted data
  • Understand the consequences for not properly handling untrusted data such as denial of service, cross-site scripting, and injections
  • Be able to test web applications with various attack techniques to determine the existence of and effectiveness of layered defenses
  • Prevent and defend the many potential vulnerabilities associated with untrusted data
  • Understand the vulnerabilities of associated with authentication and authorization
  • Be able to detect, attack, and implement defenses for authentication and authorization functionality and services
  • Understand the dangers and mechanisms behind Cross-Site Scripting (XSS) and Injection attacks
  • Be able to detect, attack, and implement defenses against XSS and Injection attacks
  • Understand the concepts and terminology behind defensive, secure coding
  • Understand the use of Threat Modeling as a tool in identifying software vulnerabilities based on realistic threats against meaningful assets
  • Perform both static code reviews and dynamic application testing to uncover vulnerabilities in Java-based web applications
  • Design and develop strong, robust authentication and authorization implementations within the context of JEE
  • Understand the fundamentals of Java Cryptography (JCA) and Encryption (JCE) and where they fit in the overall security picture
  • Understand the fundamentals of XML Digital Signature and XML Encryption as well as how they are used within the web services arena
  • Be able to detect, attack, and implement defenses for XML-based services and functionality
  • Understand techniques and measures that can used to harden web and application servers as well as other components in your infrastructure


What’s included?

Our robust course materials include much more than a simple slideshow presentation handout. Student materials include a comprehensive hard-copy course manual, complete with detailed course notes, code samples, diagrams and current reference materials, all directly related to the course at hand, indexed for ease of use. Step-by-step lab instructions and project descriptions are clearly illustrated and commented for maximum learning and ease of use. This course also includes:

  • Basic course pre-testing and/or post-course assessments
  • Ability to customize the courseware, adapting it to your companies policies, procedures and plans
  • Although this training is skills-centric, this course can be delivered using a variety of software combinations, including but not limited to: Eclipse / Ganymede, MyEclipse, IBM® WebSphere Rational Application Developer (RAD7), Oracle JDeveloper or other IDEs. This course may also run using Java 5 or Java 6. Please inquire for details and options.
  • Our detailed workbooks are complete with software-specific screen shots and step-by-step tutorials for using the software you select. In most cases we can easily port our classes to run in the environment of your choosing.

Outline: Securing JEE Web Applications (SJWA)

Session 1: Foundation


  • Thriving Industry of Identify Theft
  • Dishonor Roll of Data Breaches
  • TJX: Anatomy of a Disaster
  • Heartland: What? Again?

Security Concepts

  • Terminology and Players
  • Assets, Threats, and Attacks
  • CWE/SANS Top 25 Programming Errors
  • Categories
  • What they mean to your web applications

Defensive Coding Principles

  • Security Is A Life-cycle Issue
  • Minimize Attack Surface
  • Manage Resources
  • Application States
  • Compartmentalize
  • Defense In Depth - Layered Defense
  • Consider All Application States
  • Not Trusting The Untrusted
  • Security Defect Mitigation
  • Leverage Experience


  • Recent, Relevant Incidents
  • Find Security Defects In Web Application
Session 2: Top Security Vulnerabilities

Unvalidated Input

  • Description with working example
  • Defenses
  • Identifying trust boundaries
  • Qualifying untrusted data
  • Implementing a layered defense that effectively protects quality of service as well as data integrity
  • Designing an appropriate response to a recognized attack
  • Testing defenses and responses for weaknesses

Overview of Regular Expressions
Description with working example

Broken Access Control

  • Description with working example
  • Defenses
  • JEE authorization security overview
  • ServletFilter turning off cache
  • Defending special privileges such as administrative functions
  • Application authorization best practices

Broken Authentication and Session Management

  • Description with working example
  • Defenses
  • Multi-layered defenses of authentication services
  • Password management strategies
  • Password handling with hashing
  • Mitigating password caching
  • Testing defenses and responses for weaknesses
  • Alternative authentication mechanisms
  • Best practices for session management
  • Defending session hijacking attacks
  • Best practices for Single Sign-On (SSO

Cross Site Scripting (XSS) Flaws

  • Description with working example
  • Defenses
  • Character encoding complications
  • Blacklisting
  • Whitelisting
  • HTML/XML entity encoding
  • Understanding the implications of trust boundary definition
  • Implementing a layered defense that effectively protects quality of service as well as XSS vulnerabilities
  • Designing an appropriate response to a recognized attack

Injection Flaws

  • Description with working example
  • Defenses
  • Qualifying untrusted data
  • JDBC with PreparedStatements
  • Hibernate best practices
  • XML best practices
  • Third party API’s
  • Implementing a layered defense that effectively protects quality of service as well as injection vulnerabilities
  • Designing an appropriate response to a recognized attack
  • Cross-Site Request Forgeries (CSRF)
  • Understanding CSRF
  • Defending Against CSRF
  • Output Encoding – Why
  • Output Encoding – How
  • Output Encoding – Best Practices

Error Handling and Information Leakage

  • Description with working example
  • Defenses
  • JEE web application exception handling framework
  • Error response best practices
  • Error, auditing, and logging content management
  • Error, auditing, and logging service management
  • Best practices for supporting web attack forensics

Insecure Storage

  • Description with working example
  • Defenses
  • Data leakage
  • Risk minimization
  • Cryptography Overview
  • Data encryption
  • Partial/Complete
  • Property/Deployment/Configuration files

Insecure Management of Configuration

  • Description with working example
  • Defenses
  • System hardening
  • JEE application server configuration “Gotchas!”
  • Hardening software installation

Direct Object Access

  • Description with working example
  • Defenses
  • Java Byte Code Verifier
  • Reference ahead to Java best practices
  • XML/DTD/Schema/XSLT best practices


  • Description with working example
  • Defenses
  • Protecting your clients
  • Defending against Cross Site Request Forgeries
  • Phishing Defenses
Session 3: Best Practices

Defensive Coding Principles Revisited

  • Java Best Practices
  • Code obfuscation
  • JAAS usage
  • Java 2 security and policy files
  • Signing JAR files
Session 4: Defending XML Processing

Defending XML

  • Understanding common attacks and how to defend
  • Operating in safe mode
  • Using standards-based security
  • XML-aware security infrastructure

Defending Web Services

  • Security exposures
  • Transport-level security
  • Message-level security
  • WS-Security
  • Attacks and defenses

Defending Ajax

  • Ajax Security exposures
  • Attack surface changes
  • Injection threats and concerns
  • Effective defenses and practices
Classroom Training

Duration 3 days

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