Cross-site scripting (XSS) attacks

Today, we're diving into the world of cross-site scripting (XSS) attacks, breaking them down into three categories: Reflected XSS, Stored XSS, and DOM XSS. Let's explore these digital threats and learn how they can impact everyday users like you and me.

Reflected XSS – The Click-Trap:
Imagine you receive a seemingly innocent link through email, chat, or social media. You click on it, unaware that it contains a hidden script. This script bounces from the website to your browser, where it runs and wreaks havoc. It could steal your sensitive information or carry out actions as if it were you. The key to avoiding this trap? Be cautious and think twice before clicking on any unfamiliar links!

Stored XSS – The Web Page Booby Trap:
In a stored XSS attack, a devious attacker plants a script into a website's database or . The script blends in with the site's regular content and lies in wait. When you visit the affected page, the script springs into action, running in your browser and potentially putting your information at risk. The attacker may even perform actions on your behalf. The scariest part? Stored XSS can target multiple users over time, without anyone needing to click a specific link.

DOM XSS – The Sneaky Browser Attack:
Let's talk about DOM XSS, a crafty attack that targets the user's browser itself. When a web application's client-side code (such as JavaScript) processes user input and updates the page content without proper sanitization, the attacker spies an opportunity. They inject malicious that execute when the page is updated. While DOM XSS may share similarities with reflected and stored XSS attacks, the difference lies in the manipulation of client-side code rather than server-side code.

Stay Safe, Mere Mortals:
To protect yourself and your web applications from these XSS threats, remember the golden rule: use proper input validation and output encoding. By doing so, you'll ensure that user-generated content can't be weaponized as a vehicle for executing malicious . Surf safely, fellow mortals!


This article was originally published by Microsoft's ITOps Talk Blog. You can find the original article here.