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Top 10 Application Security Tools in 2024 Based on 2k+ Reviews

Updated on Jun 13
13 min read
Written by
Altay Ataman
Altay Ataman
Altay Ataman
Altay is an industry analyst at AIMultiple. He has background in international political economy, multilateral organizations, development cooperation, global politics, and data analysis.

He has experience working at private and government institutions. Altay discovered his interest for emerging tech after seeing its wide use of area in several sectors and acknowledging its importance for the future.

He received his bachelor's degree in Political Science and Public Administration from Bilkent University and he received his master's degree in International Politics from KU Leuven.

Altay is part of the AIMultiple benchmark team, specializing in dynamic application security testing (DAST) and workload automation. He works closely with fellow AIMultiple industry analysts and the tech team to conduct thorough and precise assessments, ensuring a comprehensive understanding of various technologies and their applications.
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Application breaches represent a significant 25% of all security incidents.1 Deployment of advanced application security tools is a cornerstone in fortifying defenses against such vulnerabilities. Developers and security professionals aim to equip themselves with the right tools to identify vulnerabilities, enforce security policies, and safeguard sensitive data. 

This article provides a comprehensive overview of the leading solutions in the application security tools market. Whether you’re a security expert or a developer looking to enhance the security posture of your applications, this guide aims to assist you in making informed decisions about the tools that best suit your needs.

Comparison of top application security tools

VendorsBest For****Reviews*Free TrialEmployees**Price
Invicti Web application scanning4.6 based on 72 reviews300Not shared publicly
GitLab4.5 based on 1,867 reviews2,300

Provides a free “community” version.
Other prices are not shared publicly

PortSwigger Burp SuitePentesting4.8 based on 136 reviews190

From $2k to $250k per year depending on scan frequency and cloud vs on-prem deployment.
Provides a free version.

SonarQubeCode quality inspection4.5 based on 112 reviews500
Has “Open-source Community” “Developer”, “Enterprise”, and “Data Center” plans. Price per lines of code.
Indusface WAS 4.5 based on 50 reviews✅ (14-day)150
Provides a free “basic” plan. Advanced plan, priced at $0.7k per year. A premium plan at $2.4k per year
Contrast Assess
4.5 based on 49 reviews300Not shared publicly
HCL AppScan4.1 based on 49 reviews✅ (30-day)10,000Not shared publicly
Checkmarx DAST
4.2 based on 33 reviews130Not shared publicly
Veracode3.7 based on 22 reviews✅ (14-day) 600Not shared publicly
NowSecure***
Mobile app scanning 4.6 based on 27 reviews900Not shared publicly

*Reviews are based on Capterra and G2

**Employee numbers are from LinkedIn

***NowSecure only provides mobile application security

****Based on technical reviewer’s experience. Within each vendor’s section, AIMultiple team outlined our rationale for this selection.

Sponsors with links are listed at the top. Then, remaining products are sorted based on their number of B2B reviews.

Screening top application security tools

While choosing the top application security tools, we considered the following publicly verifiable parameters:

  • Number of Employees: A company’s revenue correlates with the number of employees. Thus, we focus on companies with 100+ employees. 
  • References: We focus on vendors with proven success. The vendors we analyze have at least one Fortune 500 reference.  
  • B2B Reviews: We focused on vendors with reviews of more than 20 on B2B review platforms, such as Capterra and G2, showing market presence.

Modern application security tools often provide a comprehensive suite of security features within a single package, integrating multiple types of security testing and protection capabilities. Scroll to the bottom of the article to see the types of application security tools.

Application Security Tools Differentiating Features

VendorWAF IntegrationIntegration with SIEM toolsOn-Prem DeploymentIntegration with Ticketing ToolsXSS DetectionSQL injection detectionOAuth 2.0 Integration
InvictiSplunkBuilt-in, Jira, ServiceNow
PortSwigger Burp Suite
Built-in, Jira
NowSecureJira
Gitlab✅ (plug-in)Clickup, ServiceNow, Jira
SonarQubeSplunkBuilt-in, Jira, ServiceNow, ClickUp✅ (Only in Commercial Edition)✅ (plug-in)
Indusface WAS
Sumo Logic, RSA, Splunk, McAfee ESM
Contrast Assess
Azure Sentinel, Datadog, Splunk, Sumo LogicJira
Checkmarx DAST
SplunkJira, ServiceNow
HCL AppScan
IBM Security QRadarJira, ServiceNow
VeracodeSplunk, McAfee ESMJira, ServiceNow

To understand why these features are important, check the definitions and significance of these differentiating features.

Top application security tools analyzed

Invicti: Best for web application scanning

Invicti’s Dynamic Application Security Testing (DAST) solution is an application security tool for securing enterprise web applications. It emphasizes the automation of security processes within the Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC) and is equipped with features to detect critical vulnerabilities and facilitate their resolution.

The tool aims to deliver an overview of application security, employing a combination of dynamic and interactive scanning techniques (DAST + IAST) to uncover vulnerabilities. Invicti prioritizes scalability, enabling teams to efficiently handle risks in intricate infrastructures, and integrates with existing systems and workflows to boost both productivity and security.

The deployment options for Invicti’s DAST tool include on-premises, public or private cloud, and hybrid environments.It’s most famous for its expertise in examining web apps for security, whether they’re internal or external sites.

Reviews

  • Capterra: 4.7 based on 18 reviews2
  • G2: 4.5 based on 54 reviews3

Pros

  • Users highlight Invicti’s notable capabilities, particularly its verification of access and SSL injection vulnerabilities, along with its integration with various security tools.4

Cons

  • Some users have suggested enhancing the detail and precision of the reports produced by the tool. 5

PortSwigger Burp Suite: Best for pentesting

PortSwigger’s Burp Suite is a web security testing tool that emphasizes both automated and manual DAST approaches. It integrates a mix of automated scanning with hands-on testing techniques and also includes Out-of-Band Application Security Testing (OAST) to augment its DAST functions.

Burp Suite is offered in various editions such as Professional, Enterprise, and Community, each designed to cater to different requirements and operational scales. PortSwigger is renowned for catering to professionals aiming to refine their penetration testing skills. Users without technical proficiency may find the user interface daunting due to its complexity.

Reviews

  • Capterra: 4.8 based on 24 reviews6
  • G2: 4.8 based on 112 reviews7

Pros

  • Numerous reviewers have pointed out the solution’s ease of setup, emphasizing its straightforward and uncomplicated installation process. 8

Cons

  • Some users have reported stability concerns, especially regarding significant memory consumption during scans.9

NowSecure: Best for mobile application testing

NowSecure DAST is a mobile application testing tool that employs a combination of static, dynamic, and interactive analyses to comprehensively assess a mobile app’s security stance. This platform is tailored to accommodate the distinctive demands of contemporary mobile SDLC, providing solutions for both security and privacy testing.

Reviews

  • Capterra: N/A
  • G2: 4.6 based on 27 reviews10

Pros

  • Users mention that the platform offers easy integration and features a user-friendly interface.11

Cons

  • Some users point out that the testing process can be intricate and may necessitate hands-on involvement. Furthermore, the expense associated with the service can pose difficulties for smaller enterprises.12

GitLab

GitLab, though not solely a security tool, includes a comprehensive suite of integrated security features designed to identify and address vulnerabilities within the platform. This suite includes various security testing tools and management practices embedded directly into the GitLab CI/CD pipeline, allowing for automated security checks to be conducted as an integral part of the development workflow.

Key aspects of GitLab Application Security involve Static Application Security Testing (SAST) for analyzing source code for vulnerabilities without executing the code, DAST for inspecting live web applications for exploitable vulnerabilities, and Dependency Scanning to check project dependencies for known vulnerabilities. Additionally, it includes Container Scanning for vulnerabilities within container images and license compliance to ensure that dependencies comply with legal and security standards.

The GitLab Secret Scanning is an important feature that automatically scans repositories for hardcoded secrets, such as API keys, passwords, and other sensitive information, to prevent accidental exposure and enhance the security of the codebase.

GitLab offers several key security features to enhance the security and compliance of applications:

  1. Dependency Scanning: Analyzes project dependencies to identify known vulnerabilities in the libraries and packages used.
  2. Container Scanning: Scans Docker images for vulnerabilities before they are deployed to production, ensuring the images are secure.
  3. API Security Testing: Examines APIs for potential security issues, ensuring they are robust against attacks and vulnerabilities.
  4. Fuzz Testing: Automatically tests applications with random and unexpected inputs to discover coding errors and security loopholes.
  5. Compliance Management: Provides tools and features to help ensure that projects meet regulatory and organizational compliance standards.
  6. Security Dashboard: Offers a centralized view of security vulnerabilities and compliance issues across all projects, enabling easier monitoring and management of security risks.

Reviews

  • Capterra: 4.6 based on 1079 reviews13
  • G2: 4.5 based on 788 reviews14

Pros

  • Users argue that GitLab’s UI is simple to use, mainly exporting projects from existing repositories such as GitHub and Bitbucket.15

Cons

  • Some users argue that the premium edition’s features are overpriced, and executing tasks could be relatively slow.16

SonarQube : Best for code quality inspection

SonarQube is an open-source platform used for continuous inspection of code quality to perform automatic reviews with static analysis of code to detect bugs, code smells, and security vulnerabilities in more than 20 programming languages. It also has different paid versions with more features. It integrates with existing workflows to provide a detailed report on the health of an application and offers suggestions for improving code quality, enhancing maintainability, and ensuring application security.

While SonarQube can be used to show vulnerabilities, it is mainly a code scanning software.

Reviews

  • Capterra: 4.6 based on 53 reviews 17
  • G2: 4.5 based on 61 reviews18

Pros

  • Users argue that the tool is suitable for Static Code Analysis – detecting bugs, vulnerabilities, and code smells. Users also argue that the custom rules feature is helpful for advanced users.19

Cons

  • Some users argue that SonarQube can be complex and difficult to configure 20

Indusface WAS 

The Indusface DAST tool, a component of the Indusface Web Application Scanning (WAS) suite, focuses on detecting web application vulnerabilities in real-time by mimicking external attacks. This suite offers a unified platform for application security testing and vulnerability scanning, complete with cloud-based Web Application Firewall (WAF) functionalities.

Designed to identify an organization’s external web assets, including domains, subdomains, IPs, mobile applications, data centers, and various site types, the tool provides a thorough overview of the organization’s digital presence. Additionally, Indusface WAS can detect malware infections or application alterations.

Reviews

  • Capterra: N/A
  • G2: 4.5 based on 50 reviews21

Pros

  • Users commend the tools for their prompt support and swift response times, also noting the team’s expertise and effectiveness.22

Cons

  • Some users suggest improvements to make the portal’s user interface more user-friendly and informative, pointing out that the current design appears outdated. 23

Contrast Assez

Contrast Security’s Contrast Assess is an application security testing solution that mainly utilizes the Interactive Application Security Testing (IAST) methodology. It works by embedding an agent within the application, which is equipped with sensors to monitor data flow in real-time. This internal assessment approach enables the tool to offer detailed insights into vulnerabilities present in various components such as libraries, frameworks, and custom code, as well as in configuration details, runtime control mechanisms, data flow, HTTP interactions, and connections to back-end systems.

Reviews

  • Capterra: N/A
  • G2: 4.5 based on 49 reviews24

Pros

  • Users state that the solution is accurate in identifying vulnerabilities. Multiple users also noted that the real-time code evaluation feature is helpful.25

Cons

  • Users have suggested that the solution could enhance the section displaying third-party libraries with CVEs or vulnerabilities by providing more comprehensive details.26

Checkmarx DAST

Checkmarx DAST aims to uncover vulnerabilities and security weaknesses in web applications and APIs by emulating real-world attacks to identify issues during runtime. It aligns with Continuous Integration/Continuous Deployment (CI/CD) processes, enabling ongoing testing.

The tool aims to identify misconfigurations in servers/databases, as well as issues related to authentication and encryption. It provides real-time analysis, ensuring precise detection of vulnerabilities, coverage for various web applications and API frameworks, integration into existing workflows, and offers reports and analytics for insights.

Reviews

  • Capterra: N/A 
  • G2: 4.2 based on 33 reviews27

Pros

  • Some users commend the centralized reporting feature as a significant asset, assisting them in monitoring issues effectively.28

Cons

  • Some users have experienced challenges when trying to compile Checkmarx within the CI/CD pipeline. 29

HCL AppScan

HCL AppScan provides a suite of security testing tools aimed at safeguarding businesses and their clientele from cyber threats. The suite encompasses various products such as AppScan on Cloud, AppScan 360, AppScan Standard, AppScan Source, and AppScan Enterprise.

Central to HCL AppScan are its DAST, SAST, and IAST capabilities. Additionally, the suite integrates with diverse development and deployment settings, supports regulatory compliance reporting, and has the ability to tailor its functionality through the AppScan Extension Framework.

Reviews

  • Capterra: N/A
  • G2: 4.1 based on 59 reviews30

Pros

  • Users have praised HCL AppScan for its prompt response to feature requests, developer-friendly interface, and efficient vulnerability detection and severity grading capabilities. 31

Cons

  • Users have expressed concerns about HCL AppScan, citing areas that need improvement, such as the dashboard interface, limited integration with specific container technologies, difficulties in CI/CD integration, and scalability issues arising from licensing restrictions. 32

Veracode

Veracode is a provider of application security solutions that offer a suite of services, SAST, DAST, software composition analysis (SCA), and manual penetration testing, among others. Veracode’s cloud-based platform enables organizations to secure their web, mobile, and third-party applications throughout the software development lifecycle.

Reviews

  • Capterra: N/A
  • G2: 3.7 based on 22 reviews33

Pros

  • Users argue that Veracode excels in creating multiple sandboxes and runs various parts of the code individually. They also state that Veracode can be easily integrated with CI/CD pipelines, making it easy to trigger the scan.34

Cons

  • Some users argue that meditation of false positive flaws is not straightforward or internal to their team, arguing that there is a dependency on the Veracode admin team to mitigate the flows, interrupting the overall workflow. 35

Differentiating features of application security tools and their importance

Web Application Firewall (WAF)

Web Application Firewalls (WAFs) are crucial for application security as they act as a protective barrier between web applications and the internet, filtering and monitoring HTTP traffic to and from an application. WAFs help defend against common web exploits such as SQL injection, cross-site scripting (XSS), and cross-site request forgery (CSRF), among others.

By deploying a set of rules that define acceptable and unacceptable behavior, WAFs can block malicious requests before they reach the application, thereby enhancing security, preventing data breaches, and ensuring compliance with data protection regulations.

On-prem deployment

On-prem deployment is vital for application security tools in scenarios where organizations require complete control over their security infrastructure due to regulatory, compliance, or data sovereignty concerns. By hosting security tools on their own infrastructure, companies can tailor security measures to their specific needs, ensure that sensitive data doesn’t leave the premises, and maintain strict access control.

This deployment model is especially important for industries subject to stringent privacy regulations or where data cannot be stored or processed outside the company’s physical location, providing a higher level of security assurance and customization.

SQL injection detection

SQL injection detection is a critical feature for application security tools because it addresses one of the most dangerous vulnerabilities that can exist in web applications. SQL injection attacks allow attackers to manipulate backend databases through insecure application inputs, potentially leading to unauthorized access to sensitive data, data corruption, or even complete system compromise.

Security tools equipped with SQL injection detection capabilities can identify and mitigate these vulnerabilities by analyzing input data for malicious SQL queries. Thus, they can protect the application from data breaches, maintain data integrity, and ensure user trust.

XSS Detection

XSS (Cross-Site Scripting) detection is crucial for application security tools because XSS vulnerabilities enable attackers to inject malicious scripts into web pages viewed by other users. These scripts can steal sensitive information such as session cookies, login credentials, or personal data, leading to various cybercrimes like identity theft, data breaches, and unauthorized access. By detecting and preventing XSS attacks, security tools safeguard against these threats, ensuring the integrity and confidentiality of user data, bolstering trust in the application, and mitigating the risk of financial and reputational damage to businesses.

Integration with SIEM tools

Integration with SIEM (Security Information and Event Management) tools is crucial for application security tools because it enables centralized monitoring, analysis, and response to security events across an organization’s entire infrastructure. By integrating with SIEM systems, application security tools can provide valuable context about application-level threats, such as attempted exploits, suspicious user activities, or abnormal traffic patterns, enriching the overall security posture.

This collaboration allows security teams to correlate data from various sources, detect complex attack patterns, prioritize incident response efforts, and ensure compliance with regulatory requirements. Ultimately, integration with SIEM tools enhances visibility, agility, and effectiveness in defending against evolving cybersecurity threats.

Ticketing tool integrations

Integrations with ticketing tools are essential for application security tools because they streamline incident response workflows and facilitate effective collaboration between security teams and other stakeholders within an organization. By automatically generating tickets for identified security vulnerabilities or incidents, these integrations ensure that issues are promptly addressed, tracked, and resolved according to predefined processes.

This seamless communication between security tools and ticketing systems enhances transparency, accountability, and efficiency in managing security incidents, enabling organizations to mitigate risks more effectively and maintain the integrity and availability of their applications. Additionally, integration with ticketing tools helps establish a documented history of security events and actions taken, aiding in post-incident analysis and compliance efforts.

OAuth 2.0 integration

OAuth 2.0 integration is essential for application security tools because it provides a robust secure, delegated access framework. This standard allows applications to grant limited access to their services on behalf of a user without exposing user credentials by using access tokens.

It’s particularly important in modern applications that interact with other services or APIs, as it supports a variety of authorization flows suited for different client types, including web applications, mobile apps, and server-side applications. OAuth 2.0 helps enhance security by minimizing the risk of credential exposure and providing a more controlled and flexible authorization mechanism, which is crucial for maintaining secure and seamless user experiences across multiple services.

Core features of application security tools

  1. Static Application Security Testing (SAST): Analysis of source code or binaries without executing the application to identify potential security flaws.
  2. Dynamic Application Security Testing (DAST): Testing applications during runtime to find vulnerabilities that are exploitable through web application interfaces.
  3. Web Application Firewalls (WAFs): Monitoring and filtering of incoming and outgoing web traffic to protect against common web threats and attacks.
  4. Software Composition Analysis (SCA): Identification of open-source components within application code to detect known vulnerabilities and license compliance issues.
  5. Threat Modeling: Systematic analysis of an application’s design to identify and prioritize potential threats, and to devise countermeasures to mitigate or eliminate them.
  6. Penetration Testing: Simulated cyber attacks performed on applications to evaluate the security of the system.
  7. Security Information and Event Management (SIEM): Real-time monitoring and analysis of security alerts generated by applications and network hardware.
  8. Identity and Access Management (IAM): Tools to ensure that only authorized users can access certain data or applications, often incorporating Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA).
  9. Incident Response and Management: Procedures and tools to detect, respond to, and recover from security breaches or attacks.

What are the types of application security tools?

Application security tools are software products designed to identify, fix, and prevent security vulnerabilities within applications. Vulnerability scanning tools also form a similar domain.

These tools cover various aspects of security, including static and dynamic analysis to find vulnerabilities in both non-running and running applications, dependency checking for known vulnerabilities in libraries, and protection mechanisms like web application firewalls. 

Modern application security tools often provide a comprehensive suite of security features within a single package, integrating multiple types of security testing and protection capabilities to offer a holistic approach to application security throughout the development lifecycle and beyond.

Security Testing TypeDescription
Dynamic Application Security Testing (DAST)
DAST tools test applications by simulating attacks against a running application to identify vulnerabilities exploitable during runtime.
Static Application Security Testing (SAST)
SAST tools analyze source code, bytecode, or binaries of applications without executing them, identifying vulnerabilities early in the development phase.
Interactive Application Security Testing (IAST)
IAST tools combine SAST and DAST aspects by analyzing applications from within using agents or sensors, providing real-time feedback to developers.
API Security Testing
These tools test and secure APIs, ensuring that the interfaces through which applications communicate are protected against misuse and attacks.
Software Composition Analysis (SCA)
SCA tools identify and manage open-source components within an application, detecting known vulnerabilities in third-party libraries or frameworks.
Runtime Application Self-Protection (RASP)
RASP tools integrate with an application to monitor behavior and respond to attacks in real-time, detecting and blocking threats while running.
Dependency Scanning
Dependency scanning tools focus on identifying insecure dependencies in an application’s codebase, including libraries and packages, to prevent inclusion of vulnerable components.
Cloud Security Posture Management (CSPM)
CSPM tools identify misconfigurations and compliance violations in cloud environments to ensure cloud-deployed applications are secure.
Threat Modeling
Tools that assist in threat modeling identify, communicate, and understand threats and mitigations within the context of protecting applications.
Penetration Testing
These tools assist in conducting penetration tests against applications to identify vulnerabilities exploitable by attackers.

Application Security FAQ

What is Application Security?

Application Security refers to the process and practices of protecting applications from threats and vulnerabilities throughout their lifecycle. This includes securing software code, design, and deployment from malicious attacks and ensuring data integrity.

Why is Application Security important?

With the increasing reliance on software applications for business and personal use, vulnerabilities in applications can lead to data breaches, financial loss, and damage to reputation. Application Security helps in mitigating these risks by identifying and addressing security weaknesses.

What are common threats to application security?

Common threats include SQL Injection, Cross-Site Scripting (XSS), Cross-Site Request Forgery (CSRF), security misconfigurations, and unsecured APIs, among others.

How can I ensure my application is secure?

Ensuring application security involves multiple steps, including: Conducting regular security assessments and penetration testing. Implementing secure coding practices. Keeping software and dependencies up-to-date. Using security tools like Web Application Firewalls (WAF) and security scanners. Educating developers about security best practices.

What is a Web Application Firewall (WAF)?

A Web Application Firewall (WAF) is a security solution that filters and monitors HTTP traffic between a web application and the Internet. It helps protect web applications by blocking harmful traffic and preventing attacks.

How does Encryption help in Application Security?

Encryption helps in application security by converting data into a coded format during transmission or while stored, making it unreadable to unauthorized users. This ensures data confidentiality and integrity.

What role do Authentication and Authorization play in Application Security?

Authentication verifies the identity of a user accessing the application, while Authorization determines what resources a user can access. Together, they ensure that only legitimate users can access and perform actions within the application.

10. Are there any standards or frameworks for Application Security?

Yes, there are several standards and frameworks that guide application security practices, such as the Open Web Application Security Project (OWASP) Top Ten, the SANS Top 25, and the ISO/IEC 27001 standard for information security management.

Find the Right Vendors
Altay Ataman
Altay is an industry analyst at AIMultiple. He has background in international political economy, multilateral organizations, development cooperation, global politics, and data analysis. He has experience working at private and government institutions. Altay discovered his interest for emerging tech after seeing its wide use of area in several sectors and acknowledging its importance for the future. He received his bachelor's degree in Political Science and Public Administration from Bilkent University and he received his master's degree in International Politics from KU Leuven. Altay is part of the AIMultiple benchmark team, specializing in dynamic application security testing (DAST) and workload automation. He works closely with fellow AIMultiple industry analysts and the tech team to conduct thorough and precise assessments, ensuring a comprehensive understanding of various technologies and their applications.

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