From Grokking Web Application Security by Malcolm McDonald

The internet has transformed how we communicate and conduct business. It has also given rise to a community of hackers with limitless ingenuity. In response, the cybersecurity industry has boomed, offering increasingly complex solutions. For web programmers, navigating this landscape and determining what truly matters can be overwhelming. This article explores Grokking Web Application Security, a comprehensive guide that equips web programmers with essential security knowledge and practical strategies to protect their code.

Who is this book for?

Designed specifically for web programmers, Grokking Web Application Security offers an invaluable resource for both novices and seasoned professionals alike. Whether emerging from code boot camps or armed with a computer science degree, this book addresses the knowledge gaps often experienced by programmers entering the security conversation. The author, Malcolm McDonald, a security engineer with nearly two decades of experience across diverse industries, recognizes the challenges faced by web programmers. As the creator of, an interactive security training platform, McDonald has trained thousands of developers, making him the perfect guide to help programmers unlock their security expertise.

About the book

Grokking Web Application Security is a comprehensive guide that empowers web programmers to write secure code and identify vulnerabilities in their applications. By heeding the lessons held within the pages of this book, readers will gain a head start in fortifying their web applications.

However, for those eager to embark on their security journey immediately, here are some actionable steps to take:

  • Keep track of new vulnerabilities: Stay informed about zero-day vulnerabilities and apply security patches promptly. Following tech leaders on social media platforms and monitoring reputable news sites will keep you abreast of the latest security alerts.
  • Know what code you are deploying: Understand the dependencies deployed during the release process to manage and secure your web application effectively. Grokking Web Application Security provides insights into deploying from source control, utilizing dependency managers, and more.
  • Log and monitor activity: Establish real-time logs, error reporting, monitoring systems to observe web application access, detect unexpected errors, and gauge performance. These measures aid in forensic analysis.

About The Author

Malcolm McDonald is an esteemed security engineer renowned for his extensive knowledge and experience in web application security. With a track record spanning investment banking, start-ups, and PayPal, he brings a wealth of practical insights to the table. McDonald’s brainchild,, stands as a testament to his commitment to sharing knowledge and empowering developers to enhance their security skills. Leveraging his passion for training, Malcolm has equipped numerous developers worldwide with the necessary tools to tackle web security challenges.