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The CWE/SANS top 25 security vulnerabilities



The CWE/ SANS top 25 vulnerabilities are created through multiple surveys and individual interviews with developers, senior security analysts and researchers. It is a condensed list of the most common and severe software errors that can lead to serious software vulnerabilities that are typically simple to identify and exploit. 

What Is CWE/ SANS Top 25?

The CWE/ SANS top 25 most dangerous software flaws is a list of the most dangerous flaws because they let attackers gain entire control of the software, steal data and information from it, or prohibit it from functioning at all.

The SANS top 25 is a versatile starting point that can be used by almost any organization, regardless of size, industry, geography or government/ commercial status.

The controls are prioritized to protect the organization’s infrastructure and data by strengthening the organization’s defense system through continuous automated protection and monitoring. They were developed and maintained by an international group of organizations, government agencies, and security experts.


How Does SANS Top 25 Work And Why Is It Important? 

The SANS top 25 is a list created to give one the most bang for the buck when it comes to enhancing the risk posture against real-world risks. The Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures Team generated the list using publicly available data, CWE mappings from the National Vulnerability Database (NVD), and CVSS scores for each CWE.

A scoring algorithm was then used to determine the severity of each fault. This data-driven method can be used to generate a CWE Top 25 list of security vulnerabilities on a regular basis. 

List Of SANS Top 25 

  1. Out-of-bounds Write
  2. Improper Neutralization of Input During Web Page Generation (‘Cross-site Scripting’)
  3. Out-of-bounds Read
  4. Improper Input Validation
  5. Improper Neutralization of Special Elements used in an OS Command (‘OS Command Injection’)
  6. Improper Neutralization of Special Elements used in an SQL Command (‘SQL Injection’)
  7. Use After Free
  8. Improper Limitation of a Path name to a Restricted Directory (‘Path Traversal’)
  9. Cross-Site Request Forgery (CSRF)
  10. Unrestricted Upload of File with Dangerous Type
  11. Missing Authentication for Critical Function
  12. Integer Overflow or Wraparound
  13. Deserialization of Untrusted Data
  14. Improper Authentication
  15. NULL Pointer Dereference
  16. Use of Hard-coded Credentials
  17. Improper Restriction of Operations within the Bounds of a Memory Buffer
  18. Missing Authorization
  19. Incorrect Default Permissions
  20. Exposure of Sensitive Information to an Unauthorized Actor
  21. Insufficiently Protected Credentials
  22. Incorrect Permission Assignment for Critical Resource
  23. Improper Restriction of XML External Entity Reference
  24. Server-Side Request Forgery (SSRF)
  25. Improper Neutralization of Special Elements used in a Command (‘Command Injection’)


Over the years, the list of the SANS top 25 has undergone considerable changes. One noticeable change is the transition of the list from a more abstract description and version of the weaknesses to a more specific format. The remapping and change in the rankings of the weaknesses determine their intensity, functionally and severity.

As the community improves its mappings to more exact weaknesses, this movement is projected to continue in the next few years. More particular CWEs have risen to fill the place with these high-level classes as class-level weaknesses have declined.

The Top 25 Team feels that Base-level flaws are more instructive to stakeholders than Class-level weaknesses. Therefore further movement will substantially help users who are striving to comprehend the true concerns that affect today’s systems (CWE).


Codegrip Follows SANS Top 25

Codegrip is an automated code review tool that automates the code review process. It helps in building an error-free and smell-free code by making the process of reviewing code frictionless and smooth.

Codegrip ensures that the codebase does not include any vulnerabilities and bugs, and for the same it uses the SANS top 25. The availability of the list of common vulnerabilities helps in avoiding those.

A general understanding of the SANS top 25 makes it convenient for the automated tool to identify and highlight the problems and provide a detailed report on the same. The SANS top 25 list makes the task of automated code review more versatile, easy and fast. 


Must Read: Automated code Review: Is your IP safe


How SANS 25 Ensures Code Security?

The SANS top 25 list is constantly evolving and expanding. With regular updates and changes, it becomes critical to continuously spread awareness about the most frequent programming security flaws and this is exactly where the list comes in handy.

All persons involved in software development read and understand this, the security of the programs will undoubtedly increase significantly.

These programming samples available in the list helps in ensuring the security and stability of the codebase. Despite constant evolution and changes in the making and functioning of the list, the main goal of the list remains the same, that is to spread awareness about the common vulnerabilities that can make the code base lose and unhealthy. 

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The health of the code marks for its security and the SANS top 25 list is capable of providing all the common ailments and diseases that the code may commonly suffer from.

The list gives critical recommendations for software developers in order to eliminate software security flaws in their products.

Accessing the list while automating the code review process can ensure a stricter and in-depth examination of the code which is what Codegrip with the help of SANS top 25 does to ensure the code security of the software. 

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