educational

Using jQuery to Enhance Your Website Security

Stephen Yagielowicz

One of the most valuable aspects of the jQuery framework is its flexibility, which even extends into the realm of website security, by enabling and enhancing features such as web form validation, user authentication and more.

For example, Logify (plugins.jquery.com/project/Logify) easily adds an unobtrusive login panel to any website, with a variety of parameters that extend the tool’s usefulness.

The beauty of jQuery is that these code examples can be integrated.

More demanding applications will benefit from an advanced tutorial presented by IBM’s developerWorks (www.ibm.com/developerworks/web/library/wa-aj-authenticate/) that details the process of using Ajax user authentication and registration with jQuery.

This allows web form submission without reloading the browser window, leveraged by the code streamlining properties of the jQuery library, along with some desirable features that may be lacking in less sophisticated approaches.

Nettuts+ (net.tutsplus.com/tutorials/javascript-ajax/build-a-toppanel-with-jquery/) offers an in-depth tutorial of its own, showing how to produce an attractive login screen that “drops down” from the top of the page, such as a header bar.

The beauty of jQuery is that these code examples can be integrated, allowing developers to readily combine the best feature sets, options, security and appearance from several examples — mixing and matching them into just the right combination for their project’s individual needs.

One final note about jQuery and website security: experts are warning that hackers are inserting malware on to compromised websites, disguising it as nonthreatening code, such as jQuery snippets — so be alert to any unknown or recently appearing code blocks that make their way into your HTML, as this may be a sign of a successful attack.

However you use jQuery, one thing is for certain — the more experience you gain with this technology, the better you’ll like it — and the more uses for it you will find.

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