Vasyl Soloshchuk
5 October 2021

How to integrate API quickly, cheaply, and securely

Different possibilities are crucial to any user. The world of applications offers more functions. A single application will require more API integrations to connect with and use existing options. API usage will only increase over time.

When we talk about FinTech products, it is always about sensitive data. And when you have to work with sensitive data, it is always about security. Therefore, it is necessary to develop products quickly but safely.

Compromise between speed and security

To solve the speed issue, developers must create API integration quickly and inexpensively. At the same time, they must keep the application secure at the proper level. Otherwise, your product will fail to enter the market. If you succeed in entering the market quickly but lack sufficient security, sensitive data can be lost or compromised. Both situations can mean losses for your business.

No organization is protected from data breaches; even the largest brands and well-known companies—Facebook, Google, Instagram, T-Mobile, Uber, and others—have suffered significant data breaches as a result of API attacks. Worst-case scenario, a multilevel attack could potentially lead to your organization’s most sensitive data being compromised.

With the rise of APIs also comes the potential for more security breaches. “Developers focus more on items like functionality and agility than security,” notes Kyle Lai, vice president and principal security architect at Pactera. Businesses need to ensure their API deployments do not create security holes.

Future challenges

Broken or hacked APIs are behind principal data breaches. By 2022, API abuses will move from infrequent to the most frequent attack vector, resulting in data breaches for enterprise web applications. For example, one of the worst data breaches of 2020 possibly happened because the API keys were left exposed—so the data was freely accessible to anyone on the web.

Data breaches can happen because developers focus on one small area of the work. But hackers examine ways a gateway can be used for bad purposes. Being under pressure to deliver new releases fast, even responsible programmers sometimes hurry and make mistakes. To avoid such occasions, it is a good idea to simplify the process of integrating API.

For more information, please check out our guide on this topic.

Authentication and authorization

APIs give strangers access to the data. Behind every API, there is an endpoint—the server with supporting databases that responds to API requests. With APIs becoming foundational to modern app development, the attack surface is continually increasing.

Poor authentication and authorization are significant problems for many open APIs. The weak authorization permits hackers to collect data from the API server. Enterprises change simple password systems to multistep authentication. Moreover, biometric solutions such as fingerprints are growing. When a person is being authenticated, they need to pass an authorization check to gain access to different types of information.