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Critical SQL Injection Vulnerability in WooCommerce

102
Chirag Rawal
August 10, 2021
SQL-Injection-Vulnerability

SQL vulnerability in WooCommerce has been exploiting the website data from ages. The attacker looks for a vulnerable input on the web app to perform this action. It then uses the crafted SQL queries as a malicious cyber intrusion and leverages the code to access the information from the database. 

What is a WooCommerce SQL Injection Vulnerability?

It is a web security vulnerability that allows the attacker to hinder the queries in the app’s database. They can view that data which not generally available to the users without permission. This can include the data of other users or any data of the website. The attacker can easily modify, delete, or copy the data, affecting your website’s reputation in the market. 

Various Types of SQL Injections are:

1. In-Band SQL Injection 

This is the commonly used SQL injection attack. The data transfer is done through error messages on the website or the UNION operator in the SQL statements. Let us look at them individually:

  • Union-based SQL Injection: The application is vulnerable to SQL injection and application responses to the query. The attackers use the UNION keyword to gain data from the application database. 
  • Error-Based SQL injection: This technique relies on the error messages given by the application database servers. The attacker will use the message information to know the entities of the database. 

2. Inferential SQL Injection

This is also known as the blind SQL injection attack. After sending the data payload, the hacker will observe the behavior and response to determine the structure of the database. The two types of blind SQL injection attacks are:

  • Boolean Based: This will send the SQL queries in the database to forcefully return a Boolean result that can be either TRUE or FALSE. Attackers perform queries blindly to know the vulnerability. 
  • Time-Based: This SQL injection attack is used when the app returns generic error messages. This technique will force the database to wait for a certain amount of time. The response time will help the attacker to know the query returns as True or False. 

3. Out-Of-Band SQL Injection 

This SQL injection attack will request the app to transmit the data through any protocol like DNS, SMB, or HTTP. This type of attack is performed in Microsoft SQL and MySQL database by:

  • MySQL: LOAD_FILE()
  • MS SQL: master..xp _dirtee

How to Prevent SQL Injection Vulnerability in WooCommerce?

We have discussed the vulnerabilities of SQL injection and its types. The attacker uses it to read, remove, and modify the content of the app’s database. It also enables the users to read the file at any location in the server and move the content. 

Some unique techniques that can help to handle the WooCommerce SQL injection vulnerability are:

1. Escape User Inputs 

It is difficult to know if a user string is vulnerable or not. The best method is to escape the special characters in the user input. This process will save you from the SQL injection attack. Escape a string before building the query in PHP using the mysql_escape_string() function. 

You can escape the string in MySQL using mysql_real_escape_string() function. While the output is displayed in the HTML, you need to convert the string to ensure the special characters do not hinder the HTML markup language. You can easily convert the special character in PHP using the htmlspecialchars() function. 

2. Use Prepared Statements 

The usage of the prepared statement helps to avoid WooCommerce SQL injection vulnerability. It is a template of SQL query where users will specify the parameters in the later stage for execution. 

3. Securing your WordPress website

WooCommerce is a secure website, but it might have outdated core software or vulnerable plugins, leading to issues. The complexity of the website might be at higher risk for SQL injection. There might be an online scanning tool to check the vulnerability of your database. Some methods that experienced WooCommerce development service will perform are:

  • Update MySQL, WordPress core, and PHP 
  • Update all the third-party themes and plugins 
  • Will not use the root user to connect with the SQL database 
  • Limited Access of the SQL user with the sensitive directories 
  • Block SQL keywords using the server 
  • Store backups of the website to ensure damages are irreversible

4. Input Validation and User Data Filter

This is one of the easiest methods of SQL Injection Vulnerability in WooCommerce, as hackers can infiltrate the website by using user-submitted data. To handle this, user input validation and filters for the data added by the user will prevent malicious character injections. The input validation will check the data which the user submits and filters it to avoid SQL injections. 

5. Do not use dynamic SQL 

The way Dynamic SQL is presented raises the chances of SQL Injection Vulnerability in WooCommerce. The dynamic SQL language automatically generates and executes the statements, creating an open door for hackers. It is essential to use stored procedures, parameterized queries or prepared statements to protect your WooCommerce website from SQL injection attacks. 

6. Update and Patch Regularly

To ensure your WooCommerce database is secure, you need to update and patching constantly. If you do not have the latest version of WooCommerce, along with the themes and plugins, you are opening yourself to security gaps. WooCommerce SQL injection vulnerability can make its place in the database through these security breaches. So, manage all the patches and updates on your platform. Regular updates also ensure to speed up WooCommerce store and provide a better user experience. 

7. Use Firewall Tool 

This is an effective technique to keep your WooCommerce website safe. A Firewall network security system will monitor and control the data entering and act as additional security for SQL Injection Vulnerability in WooCommerce. You can take help from the WooCommerce development services to add more solutions like the Secure Sockets Layer and Content Delivery Network access. 

8. Limit the Access to Data

Adding limitations to the access privilege is another technique to secure your database against the SQL Injection Vulnerability in WooCommerce. Many plugins and themes provide inappropriate Access to visitors, which can expose your website to online vulnerabilities. Add a limit to the Access of data for different roles on the website. This will help to eliminate potential vulnerabilities which can compromise your sensitive information.

Wrapping it up!

We have given you the most straightforward and effective methods to avoid SQL Injection Vulnerability in WooCommerce. Still not sure if your platform is vulnerability proof? This tension is understandable, as one single mistake can result in huge losses! Let us ensure together that your WooCommerce platform is secure from SQL injection attacks. Contact Us! We will pull up a security wall to keep the hackers away and avoid any data breaches in the digital world.

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