Security Hardening Guide - Development

This page outlines the security aspects to be considered when developing with Caplin products or carrying out security testing assessments when testing against your Caplin client and server stacks. The provided information is intended for use by developers who wish to implement a secure environment as they develop with Caplin product(s). See further down for the recommended security practices that are currently applicable.

Note: For the recommended security practices when deploying a Caplin product, see Security Hardening Guide - Deploying.

Contents:

Server-side Integration

Recommended security practices when integrating with Caplin server-side components.

Validate all data sent sent from clients

Note: Caplin Platform server-side components do not, out-the-box, perform validation on the authenticity of the trade data sent from the client. This responsibility is to be handled by your existing trading systems.

In the case of authenticating trade prices for deal execution, there are several ways to handle this from past observations by Caplin:

  • To send any price updates to the client with a priceID field: 

    When a client receives a price update from the server prior to execution,  a trade execution message is sent to the server along with the corresponding priceID field. The server can then use the priceID to cross-reference against what it knows to be genuine prices that were previously sent out by the bank to the client (during the price updates). In addition to this, as further validation, the server can also cross-reference the ‘age’ (timestamp) of the priceID.
  • For the trading system to set thresholds of tolerance for the deal price validation sent through from the client and accept / reject depending on the how it favours the bank. This need not be implemented by the existing trading system, a Trading DataSource Adapter can be well-placed to implement this business logic. 

As a client is operating the web trading application from within a web browser, you must be aware that anyone can potentially use the debug console to execute JavaScript whilst the application is running.

We recommend you ensure that these test cases are covered in your UAT environments prior to deployment in a production environment.

Escape all data from untrusted sources

Any user submitted input at the client side that is to be to sent to the server and be persisted somewhere will need to be encoded

For example, data contained in a trade blotter would normally come from the back-end systems; however, if any blotter data is from the client then it should be output encoded in order to prevent possible XSS attacks.

Reinforce permissions for trading-on-behalf-of (TOBO) others

Trading on Behalf of (TOBO) features that are available across Caplin products such as the FX Sales Motif should be reinforced with explicit permissioning config. 

With TOBO, a sales user can trade FX on behalf of others, such as clients. In the FX Sales Motif, specific trade messages send a TOBOUser field to Liberator whenever a sales user submits or executes a trade - see RFS Submit and RFS Execute messages. This TOBOUser field is used for specifying the client that the sales user is permissioned to trade on behalf of. If the sales user is not permissioned to trade on behalf of the client specified, then the trade message should be rejected by Liberator.

If there are no checks to validate sales user/client permissioning, then it is possible for the trading system to proceed booking the trade as normal as it would have expected the value for TOBOUser to have been validated prior to booking.

Reinforcing the permissions behind TOBO related trade messages is something that can be done either programmatically (generated) or configured via XML configuration. You can find useful information on permissioning concepts and configuration options in the following documentation:

KeyMaster Servlet Authentication

KeyMaster is a servlet that facilitates the process of logging into Liberator via StreamLink as you access financial data through the Caplin FX Professional web app. KeyMaster integrates with your existing single sign-on (SSO) system to maintain secure access to financial data contained within Liberator. If you have configured FX Professional front-end systems to use KeyMaster (more information on this page), please see the following security recommendations.

Base your implementation on JndiKeyMasterServlet

KeyMaster is an API shipped with several implementation examples to help you get started. When it comes to deploying FX Professional into a production environment, it is strongly recommended that you use the JndiKeyMasterServlet implementation as a basis for your own SSO integration.

An example JndiKeyMasterSerlvet implementation is shipped by default within FX Professional. Caplin recommends that you write your own implementation based on the example provided for the JndiKeyMasterServlet in your KeyMaster <version> deployment package.

See the following pages for more information on installing and configuring KeyMaster:

Detailed information on hardening KeyMaster security for production environments:

Warning: Do not use the UnsecureUrlParameterCredentialsProvider class in the provided example servlets outside of development or in a production environment for authentication testing. 

Encode additional data sent in KeyMaster authenticatoin tokens

The KeyMaster process of authentication when logging into Liberator allows for extra data to be appended to the creation of a valid authentication token that will be verified by Liberator.

If you are creating a KeyMaster implementation which makes use of these additional parameters as part of a single sign-on, it is recommended that you encrypt any extra data to prevent this data being sent in plain-text. If you have any technical queries regarding this - please contact Caplin Support.


See also: