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(also interactive application security testing)

IAST definition

Interactive application security testing (IAST) is a methodology that analyzes a web application’s behavior during runtime to identify security vulnerabilities. Unlike static application security testing (SAST), which reviews source code, or dynamic application security testing (DAST), which tests the running application from the outside, IAST combines aspects of both methodologies, offering comprehensive security testing from within the application.

See also: source code, buffer overflow attack, SQL injection

IAST examples

  • Web application development: IAST can be employed during the software development lifecycle to identify and rectify potential security threats in real time.
  • Continuous integration/continuous deployment (CI/CD): IAST is often integrated into the CI/CD pipeline to provide continual security feedback.

Advantages and disadvantages of IAST


  • High accuracy: IAST minimizes false positives by examining the application from within during runtime.
  • Real-time feedback: IAST provides real-time results, enabling developers to address vulnerabilities promptly.


  • Complex implementation: IAST requires more sophisticated integration into the application than SAST or DAST.
  • Possible performance impact: While IAST offers real-time insights, its integration and operation could affect the application’s performance.

Using IAST

  • Implement IAST as part of your DevSecOps strategy to ensure continuous security throughout development.
  • Combine IAST with SAST and DAST for a multi-layered, robust security testing framework.

Further reading

Ultimate digital security