Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Unicode for Security Professionals

Unicode is the de-facto standard for multilingual character encoding. UTF-8 is the most popular encoding used that supports its hundreds of thousands of characters. Aside from the encoding (byte representation of characters), Unicode defines multiple transformations that can be applied to characters. For instance, it describes the behavior of transformations such as Uppercase.

The character known as Long S “ſ” (U+017F) will become a regular uppercase S “S” (U+0053). Unexpected behavior for developers can often lead to security issues. Today, we will dive into the case mapping and normalization transformations. You will see how they can contribute to logic flaws in code.

Along with this article, we are sharing a list of API to look for in source code audit. We are also publishing an interactive cheat sheet for character testing.