API Penetration testing

APIs hold the keys to your most valuable information

Hackers often find APIs as easy targets

APIs come in many flavors but often are plagued by security vulnerabilities. Using blended attack techniques, Raxis scrutinizes each API endpoint and parameter for anomalies. We do this through direct interaction and by manipulating application data in flight manually with advanced testing tools. We test and verify potential insertion points with a focus on session management, data integrity, and parameter fuzzing – varying inputs to see if we get unexpected results.

computer programmer, laid back in chair writing html code

How Raxis conducts API penetration tests

Like all of our assessments, API pentests can be tailored to your specific needs. Every API test performed by Raxis is a true manual breach attempt. While we use tools to help us identify key areas, the majority of testing is performed manually. Our engineers test the business logic of the API in an effort to escalate privilege, force data leaks, expose sensitive information, and in extreme cases make the leap from the application into other environments.

Unauthenticated User

We hunt for flaws in the login process as well as authentication bypass techniques such as SQL injection (SQLi) and session fixation. Anything from user enumeration and brute-force attacks to insecure direct object references (IDOR) are considered in-scope.

High-Privilege User

Once authenticated, Raxis looks for technical vulnerabilities as well as business logic gaps and flaws. Configuration issues, data sanitization flaws, and session issues are just a few of the areas our engineers will test.

Cross-Customer Users

Software as a Service (SaaS) customers often require testing to validate that the customers who use the API are not able to access other customers’ data. Raxis pentesters look for vulnerabilities that could allow these flaws and work to exploit them.

Low-Privilege User

When setting the scope, you choose how many roles Raxis will test. Testing as a user with limited permissions makes it possible for our engineers to attempt actions, such as accessing data that should only be available to higher-privileged users.

We speak all API

Raxis API penetration testing engineers have a deep understanding of web applications, the latest in security technology, and have the ability to write and read code.


Originally developed by Facebook, GraphQL started development in 2012 and released to open source in 2015. Many public APIs are now using GraphQL and it’s becoming more popular each day.


Representational State Transfer, or REST, has been in use since around 2000 and is one of the most used APIs among developers. REST is estimated to comprise about 90% of the APIs in use today.


Simple Object Access Protocol, known as SOAP, is a highly structured method of implementing application communication endpoints using XML. SOAP was originally made available for use in 1999.


Frequently Asked Questions

  • Does my company need an API penetration test?

Yes, these tests are important tools for your development team. APIs often power organizations’ web and mobile applications. Many organizations also release external APIs so that their customers can access and modify the data from within their own applications. All of these APIs benefit from penetration testing, and, in many cases, our customers’ clients request proof of pentest remediations before agreeing to use an API within their own applications. Our engineers jump in during the testing phase of your dev team’s secure software development lifecycle (SDLC). Instead of looking at your API as a credible user would, they take a hacker’s point of view, attempting to exploit business logic vulnerabilities as well as code and configuration issues. Raxis gives your development team useful, actionable feedback to give them to tools they need to secure your application.

  • Should API testing be a part of our Software Development Lifecycle (SDLC)?

API testing should undoubtedly be integrated into the Software Development Lifecycle (SDLC). The growing dependence on APIs in software development necessitates thorough testing and protection against potential vulnerabilities and attacks. This not only guarantees the stability and security of your software but also helps to establish confidence with your clients. As the use of APIs continues to expand, proper testing becomes increasingly critical to the overall success and reliability of any software development project. In today’s fast-paced and interconnected digital world, API testing is no longer a luxury, but a crucial component of the SDLC.

  • Does Raxis use the OWASP Top 10 as a guide for API penetration testing?

In the ever-evolving world of technology, APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) have become an essential component for businesses. However, with their increasing popularity, APIs have also become a prime target for cyber attacks. Realizing the need for a comprehensive guideline to secure APIs, OWASP (Open Web Application Security Project) created a separate Top Ten list for APIs in 2019. This list focuses on the top ten vulnerabilities found in APIs, such as broken access control, injection attacks, and security misconfigurations. As a leading provider of Penetration Testing, Raxis utilizes the OWASP API Top Ten as a framework for our API testing services. By following these guidelines, we ensure that our clients’ APIs are protected against potential threats and have robust security measures in place.

  • If I’ve already had a web app test, is an API test needed? Could the tests be performed together?

We suggest performing an API test along with a web application test, especially if your API is utilized by multiple applications, whether they are internal or external. Depending on the scope and budget of your organization, a combined test may be an effective option. APIs are designed to provide data and data updates to applications, but in doing so, they expose organizations to a different area of vulnerability. Raxis API penetration tests approach your API from the perspective of a hacker, focusing on potential openings within the API rather than the needs of the application itself. This thorough examination of your API can uncover potentially damaging vulnerabilities that may go unnoticed by traditional web application tests.

  • What Does API Penetration Testing Cover?

API Penetration Testing involves a comprehensive evaluation of an application programming interface (API) to identify and address security vulnerabilities. During this process, Raxis security experts simulate attacks on the API, aiming to uncover weaknesses that could be exploited by malicious actors. The key areas covered include examining endpoints and parameters, assessing authentication mechanisms, evaluating access controls, verifying rate limiting, and actively searching for common security issues. Regular API penetration testing helps organizations proactively address vulnerabilities and enhance overall resilience against cyber threats in an ever-evolving digital landscape.

  • What do I need to do to prepare for an API penetration test?

Before conducting an API penetration test, it is crucial to first define the scope of the test and communicate any possible risks, such as potential outages. Furthermore, it is essential to gather thorough documentation of all API endpoints and authentication methods to ensure comprehensive testing. Another important aspect to consider is having a secure testing environment in place to safeguard the live system from any potential harm. This allows the penetration testing team to effectively and accurately assess the security measures in place without compromising the client’s data or operations.

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API Penetration Testing

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