OWASP Periodic Table of Vulnerabilities - Abuse of Functionality
Abuse of Functionality
Root Cause Summary
Abuse of functionality, sometimes referred to as a "business logic attack", depends on the design and implementation for application functions and features. As functionality is added to applications, thought must be given to how the function or feature can be manipulated to circumvent the business process, or abused to perform a function not intended by the developer.
Some examples include:
- Using a send-mail form to generate spam
- Using a password reset flow to enumerate accounts
- Using a checkout form to issue a credit to a bank account, instead of debiting that account
Browser / Standards Solution
Generic Framework Solution
Custom Framework Solution
Custom Code Solution
Robust threat modeling exercises should be performed for each application feature to enumerate ways that attackers can abuse the feature. All functions and features of the application should be tested against a comprehensive set of use and abuse cases to ensure that the application enables only the intended functionality and no more.
Discussion / Controversy
Although there are some common abuse cases, vulnerabilities are generally application-specific and highly dependent on the features implemented by each application. If a generic solution can be implemented for a class of abuse, a separate vulnerability topic will exist to cover the solution.