Turn On The Lights: Why Runtime Protection Matters for Mobile Apps

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It’s essential to recognize that security is not synonymous with knowing your threats. High-value software cannot be adequately protected by arbitrarily embracing code obfuscation and runtime protection alone. To achieve proper application security, you must ensure your protections act against active and relevant threats.

Traditionally, businesses have safeguarded critical software from reverse engineering and tampering with application security solutions like code obfuscation and packing. However, the mobile ecosystem’s ever-expanding attack surface has led to the rapid evolution of threats and attacks far beyond the traditional bad actor interested in reversing and distributing compromised versions of your apps. Bad actors  are now taking advantage of vulnerable and compromised end-user devices outside the app developer’s control. So, mobile app security measures must advance to help the apps identify untrusted devices and defend themselves.

This advancement is synonymous with how physical banking branches operate today. They spend tremendous time and money constructing a secure vault within the bank for all of their client’s wealth. But they don’t just stop there,  the entire banking branch is under heavy surveillance. They have surveillance cameras, security guards, access control systems, and emergency protocols. As a result, they have captured video footage that can be monitored actively, and alarm systems are used to notify the authorities when they are triggered. By creating barriers, they have ensured they can recognize and respond to threats quickly and effectively. Banks understand the need for this additional layer of security and go to great lengths to put it in place.

Comprehensive mobile application security is no different; you need runtime visibility and protection to complement app hardening. As an appsec and appdev stakeholder, you want the ability to see risks, threats, and attacks across all the devices your application is running on. The right solutions will give you actionable insight into bad actors, malicious tooling, and malicious activity compromising your mobile app, data, and supporting enterprise infrastructure. Once you identify these risks you need solutions to mitigate them. True security must include continuous monitoring, real-time threat alerts, and the ability to respond to threats on the device where they happen.

This comprehensive mobile app security pursuit is at the heart of Zimpeirum’s Mobile Application Protection Suite (MAPS). It integrates security throughout the application lifecycle, from development to runtime, by combining capabilities such as binary scanning, app shielding, runtime protection, and critical protection.

By leveraging MAPS, you can align your mobile app security strategy with real-world relevant threats impacting your business. 

Key Takeaways

  • Obfuscation and anti-tampering are only the first step to security
  • When there is no threat visibility, the threat source can only be guessed
  • Visibility allows you to implement the right security and respond quickly

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