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Securing My PHP Application For Buisness Use

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#1 JustinK101

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Posted 15 September 2006 - 07:15 AM

Hello all, I am devolving an application that companies will HOPEFULLY :) buy and use. I am a little concerned about security though, because they will be entering sensitive information. I am decently experienced with PHP and MySQL but what are some general security tips and holes?

I am not doing any IO, purely storage and retrieval from MySQL. I will be using mail() though, and I know there some issues related to that. How about MySQL injection attacks, what’s the easiest fix for that? I purely use variables in their right scope, i.e. I don’t take advantage of REGISTER GLOBALS which I know is one good security measure. Thanks for additional advice.

#2 markbett

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Posted 15 September 2006 - 07:58 AM

Ten Security Checks for PHP, Part 1
by Clancy Malcolm



Example 3. A "Best Practice" query

Using mysql_real_escape_string() around each variable prevents SQL Injection. This example demonstrates the "best practice" method for querying a database, independent of the Magic Quotes setting.

// Quote variable to make safe
function quote_smart($value)
   // Stripslashes
   if (get_magic_quotes_gpc()) {
       $value = stripslashes($value);
   // Quote if not a number or a numeric string
   if (!is_numeric($value)) {
       $value = "'" . mysql_real_escape_string($value) . "'";
   return $value;

// Connect
$link = mysql_connect('mysql_host', 'mysql_user', 'mysql_password')
   OR die(mysql_error());

// Make a safe query
$query = sprintf("SELECT * FROM users WHERE user=%s AND password=%s",

The query will now execute correctly, and SQL Injection attacks will not work.

#3 JustinK101

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Posted 15 September 2006 - 08:24 AM

Thanks for tips Mark. Unfortunately I have already written a lot of this code, and changing all my queries to implement the function call quote_smart() on every variable is nothing-less than a disaster and headache. Looks like smart_quotes_gtc going to have to be good enough, unless I feel ambitious and want to change all my queries. Any other idea to simply my life?

Currently my queries look like:

$sql = "SELECT first_name, last_name, company_name FROM customers WHERE customer_id = " . $_POST['customer_id'] . " AND status = '" . $isActive . "'";

Any easy fix for queries in that format?

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