How can you effectively protect your application against cyber attacks?

Mélanie Lebrun


Youzer Marketing Manager


Cyber attacks aren't confined to computers, they also affect applications. Let's take a look at the dangers and solutions, and let's go ->.


Smartphones have become our everyday companions, assisting us in both our personal and professional lives. The security of mobile applications is one of the central concerns of our stakeholders. This concern is all the more legitimate when you consider that the average smartphone hosts over 80 applications, even if only a few of them are used on a daily basis (*1). In any case, these digital platforms are highly vulnerable to cyber-attacks, as they accumulate a large amount of sensitive data.

However, by understanding the existing risks, you can better anticipate cyberattacks and effectively protect your mobile application and its users.

Digital attacks: What are the threats to your application?

It's important to note that threats to applications evolve as technology advances. In 2023, cybersecurity firm Kaspersky Lab recorded almost 33.8 million attacks against mobile devices, a 50% increase on the previous year. Adware accounted for 40.8% of all detected threats (*2). Other forms of digital attack must also be reviewed:

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Exploiting security vulnerabilities

Malicious entities explore vulnerabilities in the server and the user's mobile device to gain unauthorized access. Lack of API security, user authentication and poor authorization management are the most common risks.

Corrupted codes

Digital hackers can corrupt your application's lines of code, altering its configuration or introducing elements that could compromise its integrity. On-the-fly modification of source code or SQL injections represent a major danger to application users.

Intrusion and data theft

When cyber-attackers detect a security flaw such as a weak data encryption protocol, they take advantage of the opportunity to infiltrate the system by disrupting the network or hijacking sessions and get their hands on confidential information. This is the case when developers bypass up-to-date, robust protocols such as HTTPS for communication with backend servers.


This technique, commonly used by hackers, consists of sending incentive messages to users, who receive them in the form of push notifications, advertisements or emails. Unaware of the deceptive nature of these calls to action, users instinctively click on the messages, install the fake applications or deliberately disclose their personal data.  

Whatever the maneuver used by malicious entities, their aim is generally to thwart or weaken the security measures in place, illegally access and exploit sensitive data, or alter the application's functionality.

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What are the consequences of a cyber attack?

Digital intrusions have far-reaching consequences, both for application owners and for their customers.

Impact on application owners

When a mobile application malfunctions, or when user data is stolen, the company owning the application can face serious repercussions, such as business paralysis and reduced productivity. These situations can lead to a loss of credibility with users, resulting in a drop in engagement rates, mass uninstallations or a decline in the number of downloads.

And when the incident escalates, the company or developer may be subject to legal or financial penalties for failing to comply with user data protection laws. Financial damage can also take on enormous proportions in an attempt to repair the damage.

The impact on end users

Application customers are the ones who suffer the most damage in cases where the digital platform they have downloaded is subject to a cyber attack. When an application's services are the target of a data-altering invasion, users can lose much or all of the information stored on their device.

Even more serious. By intercepting the customer's login details and accessing their personal space, hackers can get their hands on a large amount of confidential information on their identity or banking details. The criminals can then exploit this data to carry out fraudulent acts in the name of the legitimate account owner.

How can you protect your application against cyber attacks?

While there's no magic formula for definitively eradicating the risk of digital attacks, you can still adopt the best strategies for strengthening the security of your mobile app and your customers. These security approaches are based on a few key points:

Strengthening authentication methods

This strategy involves implementing robust authentication rules, such as strong passwords, two-factor authentication involving biometric systems, QR codes, facial identification, or OTP (One-Time Password) via SMS.

Optimizing access control

Today, most application functionalities require the user's permission to access his or her data. Raising awareness of best practices regarding the granting of these special permissions is important, as is the transparency of information on the use of user data following the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) (*3).

Data protection

This measure is essentially based on the encryption of sensitive data (personal information, authentication data, messages, images, banking transactions, documentation and other intellectual property, etc.) to ensure their security and integrity. This also involves enhanced security of the application's API.

Using app builders

To minimize the risks associated with manual coding errors that can be exploited by hackers, many companies are now turning to automated development solutions and calling on no-code app builders. These platforms offer integrated security systems, plus automatic updates of security modules to protect you from potential attacks without having to mobilize an entire team of specialists to maintain your application.  

Sources :

  1. Mobile app market: +83% downloads in 5 years - Goodbarber
  2. Attacks on mobile devices have increased dramatically in 2023 - Kaspersky
  3. The six main principles of the RGPD - CNIL
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