R157. Use the strict mode


The organization should set its parsers, linters, compilers and interpreters to run in strict mode.


  1. CAPEC-123: Buffer Manipulation. An adversary manipulates an application’s interaction with a buffer in an attempt to read or modify data they shouldn’t have access to. Buffer attacks are distinguished in that it is the buffer space itself that is the target of the attack rather than any code responsible for interpreting the content of the buffer.

  2. CAPEC-129: Pointer Manipulation. This attack pattern involves an adversary manipulating a pointer within a target application resulting in the application accessing an unintended memory location. This can result in the crashing of the application or, for certain pointer values, access to data that would not normally be possible or the execution of arbitrary code.

  3. CAPEC-130: Excessive Allocation. An adversary causes the target to allocate excessive resources to servicing the attackers' request, thereby reducing the resources available for legitimate services and degrading or denying services. Usually, this attack focuses on memory allocation, but any finite resource on the target could be the attacked, including bandwidth, processing cycles, or other resources.

  4. CWE-120: Classic Buffer Overflow. The program copies an input buffer to an output buffer without verifying that the size of the input buffer is less than the size of the output buffer, leading to a buffer overflow.

  5. CWE-611: Improper Restriction of XML External Entity Reference. The software processes an XML document that can contain XML entities with URIs that resolve to documents outside of the intended sphere of control, causing the product to embed incorrect documents into its output.

  6. OWASP Top 10 A4:2017-XML External Entities (XXE). Many older or poorly configured XML processors evaluate external entity references within XML documents. External entities can be used to disclose internal files using the file URI handler, internal file shares, internal port scanning, remote code execution, and denial of service attacks.

  7. OWASP Top 10 A6:2017-Security Misconfiguration. Security misconfiguration is the most commonly seen issue. This is commonly a result of insecure default configurations, incomplete or ad hoc configurations, open cloud storage, misconfigured HTTP headers, and verbose error messages containing sensitive information. Not only must all operating systems, frameworks, libraries, and applications be securely configured, but they must be patched/upgraded in a timely fashion.

  8. OWASP Top 10 A8:2017-Insecure Deserialization. Insecure deserialization often leads to remote code execution. Even if deserialization flaws do not result in remote code execution, they can be used to perform attacks, including replay attacks, injection attacks, and privilege escalation attacks.

  9. OWASP-ASVS v4.0.1 Appendix C: Internet of Things Verification Requirements.(C.33) Verify that secure compiler flags such as -fPIE, -fstack-protector-all, -Wl, -z,noexecstack, -Wl, -z,noexecheap are configured for firmware builds.

  10. OWASP-ASVS v4.0.1 V5.5 Deserialization Prevention Requirements.(5.5.2) Verify that the application correctly restricts XML parsers to only use the most restrictive configuration possible and to ensure that unsafe features such as resolving external entities are disabled to prevent XXE.

  11. OWASP-ASVS v4.0.1 V14.1 Build.(14.1.2) Verify that compiler flags are configured to enable all available buffer overflow protections and warnings, including stack randomization, data execution prevention, and to break the build if an unsafe pointer, memory, format string, integer, or string operations are found.

  12. PCI DSS v3.2.1 - Requirement 6.5.2 Address common coding vulnerabilities in software-development processes such as buffer overflows.

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