10 Best Open Source Security Testing Tools

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10 Best Open Source Security Testing Tools

Sameeksha Medewar
Last updated on March 5, 2024

    Application security is essential. Secure applications are functionally stable and drive hefty interest and traffic from real customers. Any software with malicious content, links, APIs with a risk of a data leak, and safety concerns is said to be insecure. In such a scenario, customers often lose trust in the application, resulting in its abandonment, and thus the application developer may have to face huge losses.

    Applications, when still under development, are more prone to security glitches and instability. Therefore, to mitigate any possible security glitches and loopholes, it becomes essential to test the security and safety of applications. The security testing of applications can be done seamlessly and quickly with the aid of security testing tools.

    In this article, we will discuss some of the top-rated application security testing tools in detail. So, without further ado, let’s get started.

    10 Best Open Source Security Testing Tools

    1. ZAP or Zed attack Proxy

    An open-source tool developed by OWASP or Open Web Application Security Project, ZAP is ideal for testing web applications for security. It is a multi-platform tool providing a wide range of robust security testing features. It can track and highlight any security compromises in an application and can assist during both the development and testing phases. The tool is user-friendly and is suitable for beginners as well as maven programmers and testers.


    • Supports command-line access.
    • It can run automatic scanning.
    • It has a REST-based API.
    • It has a provision for SQL injection and XSS injection.
    • Features an easy-to-use and interactive UI.
    • It leverages an additional and robust AJAX rewrite.
    • Available for Linux, Windows, Unix, and macOS.

    ZAP can also assist users with:

    • Private IP disclosure
    • Application error disclosure
    • Session ID in URL rewrite
    • Intercepting a proxy for testing a web page manually

    ZAP is a valuable tool for checking applications for any security pitfalls. As it can be used for free, it is extremely popular among professional software testers.

    2. Wfuzz

    Wfuzz is the next item on our list of best security testing tools, and it is also an open-source tool like ZAP. It is popularly used for brute-forcing web applications. Wfuzz can successfully and efficiently expose some serious security vulnerabilities in the application, such as the ones below:

    • SQL injection
    • XSS injection
    • LDAP injection

    The platform is developed using Python coding language and is considered to be a reliable and valuable tool for application security testing. It doesn’t have a GUI interface and therefore can only be controlled and used via the command line.


    • It offers authentication support (basic and NTLM).
    • Multi-threading is possible.
    • It has support for proxy and SOCK.
    • Equipped with multiple injection points.
    • Has payload combinations with iterators.

    Moreover, the platform has various payloads such as a list, hexrand, range, names, and files.

    3. Wapiti

    Wapiti is another leading web application security testing tool. It is an open-source tool that comes loaded with several features that allow developers and software testers to carry out security testing effectively. It leverages Black box testing to scan for any security issues in the applications. The technology is stable and provides insightful results.

    This tool can be used from the command line, and thereby, you should be familiar with the working of a command-line tool and commands supported by this tool. However, thanks to its official documentation, knowing all commands is a straightforward process.


    • Supports POST and GET attack methods.
    • Can assist in exposing security glitches such as:
      • CRLF injection
      • Shellshock or Bash bug
      • File disclosure
      • Command execution detection
      • Database injection
      • SSRF or Server Side Request Forgery
      • XSS injection
      • XXE injection
    • It offers an in-built buster module.
    • Supports authentication with the aid of different methods such as NTLM and Kerberos.

    4. W3af

    W3af is an optimum tool for security testing. Just like Wfuzz, it is also developed and programmed in Python. It can help programmers and developers to scan over 200 security anomalies in applications. The platform is reliable and trusted by many professionals. Some of the issues that W3af can detect are as follows:

    • Buffer overflow
    • CSRF
    • Blind SQL injection
    • Cross-site scripting
    • Guessable credentials
    • PHP misconfigurations
    • Insecure DAV configurations

    The tool provides easy and stable authentication support during testing and can be quickly and easily adopted. Also, the GUI interface further allows users to interact with the features offered by W3af with ease.

    5. Acunetix

    Equipped with an in-built vulnerability scanner, Acunetix can scan applications for various types of security anomalies. It also leverages Black-box scanning in the form of AcuSensor to ensure an efficient testing process.

    Acunetix can also use SPA crawling in the form of DeepScan. The associated multi-thread ensures continuous scanning of WordPress installation for detecting any type of security pitfalls. It also incorporates a login sequence recorder that can crawl password-protected fields as well.

    The platform has a vulnerability management system assisting in the generation of compliance and technical reports so that insightful data can be leveraged. The tool can aid in discovering open ports and scan firewalls, load balancers, and switches for security testing.

    The ability to detect and highlight over 50,000+ undiscoverable security and network anomalies in applications makes Acunetix a worthy security testing tool. For customers, it provides free network scans for 1 year and also provides a free demo.

    6. SonarQube

    SonarQube is an open-source application security testing tool. It is leveraged widely to measure the quality of the source code of web applications. It is written in Java and can successfully run security analysis for over 20 programming languages. It can explicitly integrate with various integration tools such as Jenkins.

    The tool provides clear results in a segregated interface by highlighting anomalies using red or green lights. While the red light represents severe issues, the green light corresponds to low-risk anomalies.


    • It can be controlled via a command line.
    • It also comes with a GUI.
    • It can detect issues such as:
      • Cross-site scripting
      • DoS or Denial of Service attacks
      • Memory corruption
      • HTTP response splitting
      • SQL injection
    • Allows easy integration with several DevOps tools.
    • It can analyze pull requests.
    • It allows quality tracking of short-lived as well as long-lived code branches.

    7. Iron Wasp

    Iron Wasp is also an open-source security testing tool with robust and valuable features. It can detect more than 25 types of security glitches in web applications. Not only this, but it can also identify the false positives and false negatives, thereby elevating the efficiency of security testing. Vulnerabilities Iron Wasp can uncover are:

    • CSRF
    • Privilege escalation
    • Cross-site scripting
    • Broken authentication
    • Hidden parameters

    The tool is GUI-based and is extensible with the aid of modules or plugins. Iron Wasp is also capable of generating insightful and detailed reports in RTF and HTML formats.

    8. SQLMap

    Moving further in our discussion of Security testing tools, let’s take a look at SQLMap. It efficiently automates the process of identifying and leveraging SQL injection vulnerabilities in databases of websites. The platform is available for free and is designed with a robust testing engine that supports 6 types of SQL injection techniques such as:

    • Boolean-based blind
    • Out-of-band
    • Error-based
    • Time-based blind
    • Stacked queries
    • UNION query

    SQLMap can also support Oracle and PostgreSQL. It comes with a feature that allows the detection of hash-based passwords. The added support for the orchestration of dictionary-based attacks increases its reputation in the market. The platform has 7 levels of verbosity support and offers ETA supposed to every query.

    9. Nogotofail

    It is a specialized network traffic security testing tool from Google. It is a lightweight tool having the ability to identify TLS/SSL anomalies and misconfigurations. It can efficiently and seamlessly identify the following types of system glitches:

    • TLS injection
    • SSL certificate verification issues
    • MiTM attacks

    The platform is easy to use and features an interactive design. Nogotofail also allows users to set up a proxy, router, or VPN server.

    10. Netsparker

    Netsparker is known for elevating the automation, accuracy, and speed of security testing of applications. It can effectively identify anomalies such as cross-site scripting, SQL injection, etc. The platform can scan web applications as well as web APIs for any security bottlenecks. It can also differentiate between real and false positives, thereby elevating accuracy and precision.

    The platform also reduces the time needed for testing and saves users from conducting bug detection manually for extended periods. Netsparker can be used as Windows software or can also be accessed as an online platform. Netsparker also provides a free demo.

    Bonus Security Testing Tools

    11. Burp Suite

    Burp Suite could be an ideal choice for professional developers and software testers to conduct comprehensive security testing. It is available in both community and professional editions. It can quickly scan applications for 100 anomalies and thereby elevates the safety and security of applications.

    The vulnerabilities detected by Burp Suite are XSS or cross-site scripting, SQL scripting, Xpath injection, etc. It can scan complete applications, the branch or internal URLs of the site, and also an individual URL. The system presents results in a very comprehensive fashion in the form of a tree view. Users can click on a branch or node to dig into the details of the error. For clear understanding, the anomalies are marked with red.

    12. Klockwork

    Serving programmers and developers with optimum testing efficiency, Klockwork is a stable and quality security testing tool. It can analyze code and is used extensively for detecting reliability anomalies, security issues, and safety glitches. It can be easily integrated with JIRA, Jenkins, etc.


    • Can provide segregated results ProjectWise.
    • Provides detailed analysis of identified bugs and pitfalls.
    • It can export results to Jira.
    • It can highlight and mark the issue in code for easy identification and spotting.


    As you are now familiar with popular security testing tools, you can leverage them to mitigate any security glitches in your applications. These tools provide better results than manual testing and also increase the accuracy and precision of security testing.

    Quick testing by automation testing tools always gives programmers and software testers an upper hand and works more on bug resolution for the application. While some security testing tools are paid only, free tools are also available. One can consider and shortlist tools according to technology, budget, integration tools, and other needs.

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