Centralized Security Functionality In a .NET World - The OWASP .NET ESAPI Project

The Enterprise Security Application Programming Interface, or ESAPI, is a one-stop security shop for developers looking to implement security mechanisms in their code. The brainchild of Jeff Williams, one of the founders of OWASP, the ESAPI is an open source project that has gained traction with organizations looking to implement secure applications using tried and tested code that is also well organized and consistent. It includes functionality for validating and encoding data, authenticating and
 authorizing users, logging, error handling, and more. The API includes a Java reference implementation that can be extended to allow any organization to integrate security functionality into their Java/JEE applications.

 But what about .NET? Many organizations are banking on the powerful Microsoft programming framework to help them deliver robust and secure software. However, like Java, .NET tends to leave it up to the end-user programmers to get security code right. The OWASP .NET ESAPI project intends
 to help .NET developers avoid introducing security vulnerabilities into their code by providing a full port of the original ESAPI project from Java to C#.

 This talk will explore the gains, gripes, and gotchas of converting the ESAPI to .NET from the .NET ESAPI project lead himself. It will discuss features of the .NET frameworks security model, key differences between the Java and .NET platforms, and ASP.NET web security issues. Additionally, future ideas for .NET specific functionality will be proposed and discussed. Participation and feedback from the attendees is expected and encouraged.

About the Speaker:


Alex Smolen



Foundstone Role

Alex Smolen is a Software Security Consultant at Foundstone, where he provides security consulting services to clients to help find, fix, and prevent security vulnerabilities in enterprise software. His duties include threat modeling, code review, penetration testing, and secure software development lifecycle (S-SDLC) design and implementation. He is also an instructor for the Writing Secure Code, Building Secure Software, and Ultimate Web Hacking  courses.



Alex has been working in software development for a decade and has participated in and led several development projects in ASP.NET, Java, and Ruby on Rails. His primary interests include the integration of security into software development life cycles, evaluating the business impact of information security, and the security of emerging technologies. Alex is a contributing member of the software security community and has participated in several open-source security projects.


Prior to joining Foundstone, Alex was the Security Solutions Manager at Parasoft Corporation, where he led the development of tools and methodologies for helping clients ensure application security from the ground up.


Notable Accomplishments

Alex is one of 24 recipients worldwide of the Microsoft MVP Award for Visual Developer, Security

Alex has spoken at the following conferences:

• Enterprise Architect Summit, 2005

• Better Software, 2005

• OWASP Conference, 2005

• SD West, 2007

• SD Best Practices, 2007


Alex has published the following articles:

• Enterprise Architect, “Is Your Application Security Up to Spec?”

• Java Developers Journal, “How to Create Secure Web Applications With Struts”


Alex is the author of Hacme Casino, available on Foundstone’s web site.


Professional Education

Alex graduated from the University of California, Berkeley, with a BS in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EECS).

Name Sales End Price
General Admission Ended Free

On the Web

October 2008: Alex Smolen: the ASP .NET ESAPI - OWASP

Jan 15, 2009 · Centralized Security Functionality In a .NET World – The OWASP .NET ESAPI Project. The Enterprise Security Application Programming Interface, or ESAPI ...


Denver October 2008 meeting - OWASP

Oct 21, 2008 · Centralized Security Functionality In a .NET World – The OWASP .NET ESAPI Project. Slide Deck. The Enterprise Security Application Programming Interface ...



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