When considering the comparison between Approov Mobile Security and traditional mobile app hardening solutions, it's important to recognize that each of these security measures serves distinct purposes and can potentially work in tandem to enhance the overall security of your mobile applications and backend infrastructure.
Approov, at its core, is purpose-built to safeguard the APIs that mobile apps rely on. Its primary focus is on ensuring the integrity and authenticity of the communication between mobile applications and the backend servers. This means that Approov places a strong emphasis on preventing API abuse, unauthorized access, and ensuring that only genuine, unmodified mobile apps can interact with your backend services.
On the other hand, app hardening solutions are primarily designed to protect the mobile application itself. These solutions employ various techniques like code obfuscation, encryption, and anti-tampering measures to make it more difficult for malicious actors to reverse engineer or manipulate the mobile app. They enhance the app's resistance against cracking, data extraction, and other app-level attacks.
The choice between Approov and app hardening solutions depends on several factors, including the specific threats you need to guard against and the nature of the data your mobile app handles.
Approov provides robust security measures to protect mobile apps and their associated APIs, ensuring the authenticity of the apps, the safety of the client device, and the integrity of connections to backend services.
Here are the six ways in which Approov secures mobile apps:
- App Attestation: Approov ensures that only genuine and authentic apps can access your backend services. It effectively prevents bots, as well as tampered or repackaged apps from gaining access. The system employs a deterministic approach that minimizes false positives.
- Real Time Threat Intelligence: Approov provides immediate, real-time visibility into your deployed apps, the environments they operate in, and any threats being actively mitigated.
- Dynamic Certificate Pinning: This feature prevents Man-in-the-Middle attacks by securing connections to a fixed set of backend certificates that can be easily managed. It also offers over-the-air instant pin updates without service disruptions.
- Runtime Secrets Protection: Approov addresses the issue of hard-coded or stolen API keys by delivering secrets "just-in-time" to the app when needed for making API calls, but only after the app and its runtime environment have passed attestation. These secrets are dynamically managed and can be updated across all deployed apps without requiring app updates.
- API Security: Approov conducts continuous and thorough inspections of mobile apps and their host devices to guarantee authenticity when accessing backend APIs and services. API keys are granted only if the app is genuine and the environment is safe, thus preventing API abuse, credential stuffing, fake botnet registrations, and DDoS attacks.
- App Shielding: Approov identifies unsafe conditions on the client device, such as rooted or jailbroken devices, apps running under debuggers or emulators, or the presence of malicious frameworks. It validates the client environment and applies dynamic policies for fine-grained control.