Mobile Application Testing Services

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What is Mobile Application Penetration Testing?

Mobile application penetration testing is a holistic approach to testing the security of mobile applications.

With rapidly increasing numbers and types of smart mobile devices, the number of applications created to run them is also increasing. Mobile devices can now interact with company networks, data centres, and servers. Bugs in mobile apps are capable of hijacking entire applications, deleting user data, and leaking user details. Plus, applications that handle sensitive data and functionality are highly prone to malicious activities and threats.

The most common tests are done on Apple iOS and Android-based mobile applications. Android hosts over 3 million applications, making Android application penetration testing a key part of the cyber security service space. The same goes for iOS applications, which number around 2 million, and these numbers have steadily increased over the years. If you’re developing an application, you should plan on conducting rigorous and continued testing of the software at all development stages. Mobile app penetration testing is a tried and tested way to ensure the integrity, confidentiality and security of your mobile application and its data.

By utilising the services of a cybersecurity company that uses ethical hacking methods and imitate the actions of would-be attackers, you can protect your business from liability and reputational risks and ensure the success of your venture.

Why does your business need mobile application pentesting?

Penetration testing of mobile applications is not a quick or easy process.

For the best results, your organisation needs to conduct comprehensive pen tests of the mobile applications you develop at different development stages to uncover weaknesses. Mobile application pen testing exposes the weaknesses and the strengths of apps your organisation is developing. Breaches and flaws in mobile application security can not only result in the loss of sensitive data for your customers and financial losses for your company, but they can also damage your business's reputation irreversibly.

This can have a negative impact on customer loyalty and brand equity and can even lead to a violation of compliance laws in specific industries.

Common weaknesses of mobile applications

Here are ten common reasons why businesses need to utilise well-executed mobile application pen tests:

Insecure data storage

Failing to store data securely gives hackers the opportunity to access devices and steal information. Breaches happen when software developers assume that users have the knowledge or malware to infiltrate systems.

Insuffiiceint cryptography

Lack of a proper encryption process means data on the mobile application is not safe. The data is unprotected if developers make an error when implementing an encryption attempt. This gives hackers a chance to access and manipulate data that should be unreadable.

Undocumented functionality

Some aspects of software development are meant to stay hidden and are not supposed to be available to the public. This functionality, however, makes applications less secure. As a result, experienced tech gurus can use this extraneous functionality to access the mobile application.

Reverse engineering & decompilation

Reverse engineering in software development means using a decompiling tool to find the underlying source code of an application. Hackers can identify weak points and use these access points to cause damage to mobile applications.

Inadequate authentication mechanisms

Although most mobile apps have some form of authentication, these can contain flaws. This lack of proper authentication can be extremely harmful, for example, with banking apps that will give attackers access to user bank accounts.

Security decisions via untrusted inputs

As most source code for mobile applications is available online, user input can be used to alter an application designed to make security decisions. The hacker can access data or steal information if this input is hiding malicious code.

Insecure communication

Because most applications transmit data, a lack of proper encryption increases the risk of malicious activities and attacks.

Improper mobile platform usage

For applications that need additional permissions in addition to general functional requirements, there is a risk of improper use of the platform.

Code tampering

Mobile software developers must develop applications with high levels of code integrity. Mobile app pentesting should check for opportunities for code tampering or modification.

Poor coding practices

Defects in mobile application codes can result in corporate security malpractices and give hackers an opportunity to access enterprise systems.


Mindfire’s Methodology for Mobile App Penetration Testing

Penetration testing for mobile applications needs to be transparent and easy to repeat. It is a security measure that uses the traditional security testing methodology but applies it in a mobile environment. Mindfire’s mobile pen testing process comprises four distinct stages; intelligence gathering, mobile app analysis, exploitation of vulnerabilities, and reporting.

Discovery & Intelligence Gathering

The first step of a mobile app penetration test is intelligence or information gathering. The data that Mindfire's pen test teams collect during this stage forms the basis of a mobile app penetration testing process.

The discovery phase aims to understand the mobile application's design, architecture and data flow. Our pentesters will use open-source intelligence (OSINT) to gather information on the application by searching the internet.

App Analysis & Assessment

At this stage, Mindfire's testers use assessment techniques to observe how the application functions before and after installation on a mobile device. Some of these techniques include:

  • Static analysis
  • Dynamic analysis
  • Local file analysis
  • Reverse engineering
  • Architecture analysis
  • Inter application communication

Testing & Exploitation

This is a real-world attack simulation that helps Mindfire's mobile application pentesters see how the application will respond to an attack. Our infosec experts take advantage of all vulnerabilities they have discovered and use mobile penetration testing tools to hack the system. These are usually found online or created by the security team's developers.


The final step of pentesting mobile apps is the preparation and presentation of the findings of the test. During this stage, Mindfire's test team will create executive-level and technical reports. The former is used by management and other non-technical employees. The technical report identifies more specific vulnerabilities and gives individual remediation procedures.

Our pentesters finalise the mobile app pen test by presenting final documents that include expert recommendations, queries, and updates. At Mindfire, we make sure to answer all pertinent questions and present a final version to our clients to review and approve.

Mobile application pentest scope

What to Check During Mobile Application Penetration Testing

Public network communication

A lot of data theft happens when hackers steal user data over public networks. Pen testing mobile apps requires infosec teams to test how data travels over networks.

Architecture & design

This is a crucial step for effective mobile app penetration testing. Testers need to understand the architecture and design of software to identify areas of insecurity.

Authentication & session management

It’s necessary to test the efficiency of application security measures such as session expiration during a password change or multi-factor authentication.

Data storage

Look for clear text storage that is precisely what hackers hope to find in insecure applications.

Error codes

Pen test teams need to check for debug and error messages that could inadvertently reveal internal app information to the end-user.

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If you are looking for reliable and efficient solutions to enhance your business operations, Mindfire is the perfect partner for you. Contact us today to learn more about our services and how we can help you achieve your goals. Whether you need Cyber Security Services, Managed Security Services (MSS), Consulting Services, Cyber Risk Management Services, Cloud Services, Digital Services, or Digital Transformation, our team of experts is here to assist you every step of the way. Don't hesitate to get in touch with us and take your business to the next level with Mindfire.