Improper Error Handling Template

Executive Summary:

This report addresses a security vulnerability known as Improper Error Handling within our application. Improper Error Handling occurs when the application fails to handle error conditions appropriately, leading to the disclosure of sensitive information, unintended application behavior, or potential security risks. This report aims to detail the vulnerability, its potential impact on our systems and users, and actionable recommendations for mitigation.

Description of the Vulnerability:

Improper Error Handling vulnerabilities arise when the application generates error messages or responses that contain sensitive information, such as stack traces, internal server details, or database error codes. Attackers can exploit these vulnerabilities to gain insight into the application's inner workings, identify potential attack vectors, or exploit security weaknesses. Common examples include error messages revealing database schema details, stack traces exposing code structure, or verbose error responses disclosing system configurations.


The impact of Improper Error Handling vulnerabilities can range from minor information leakage to severe security breaches, depending on the sensitivity of the disclosed information and the attacker's capabilities. Attackers can exploit these vulnerabilities to gather intelligence about the application's architecture, identify potential vulnerabilities, or launch targeted attacks, potentially leading to unauthorized access, data breaches, or service disruption.


The likelihood of exploitation depends on various factors, including the visibility of error messages, the frequency of error conditions, and the attacker's motivation and expertise. However, given the prevalence of Improper Error Handling vulnerabilities in web applications and the potential impact on system security, the risk associated with this vulnerability is significant if not properly mitigated.

Steps to Reproduce:

  1. Identify functionalities within the application that generate error messages or responses in response to invalid input, unauthorized access attempts, or application errors.
  2. Trigger error conditions by submitting malformed input, unauthorized requests, or intentionally causing application errors.
  3. Analyze error messages or responses for any sensitive information, such as stack traces, file paths, or database error codes, disclosed in the error messages.
  4. Attempt to exploit the disclosed information to gain insight into the application's inner workings, identify potential vulnerabilities, or launch further attacks targeting exposed weaknesses.

Recommendations for Developers:

  1. Implement Generic Error Messages: Use generic error messages that provide minimal information to users without disclosing sensitive details about the application's architecture, configuration, or internal workings.
  2. Log Errors Securely: Log errors securely, ensuring that sensitive information is not written to log files accessible by unauthorized users or attackers. Implement proper access controls and encryption mechanisms to protect log files from unauthorized access or disclosure.


Addressing the Improper Error Handling vulnerability is critical to protecting sensitive information, preserving system integrity, and maintaining user trust within our application. By implementing generic error messages and securely logging errors, we can mitigate the risks associated with Improper Error Handling vulnerabilities and enhance the overall security posture of our systems.