[PCI DSS 3.0] 6.5.5 Improper error handling

6.5.5 Improper error handling

6.5.5 Examine software-development policies and procedures and interview responsible personnel to verify that improper error handling is addressed by coding techniques that do not leak information via error messages (for example, by returning generic rather than specific error details.

Applications can unintentionally leak information about their configuration or internal workings, or expose privileged information through improper error handling methods. Attackers use this weakness to steal sensitive data or compromise the system altogether. If a malicious individual can create errors that the application does not handle properly, they can gain detailed system information, create denial- of-service interruptions, cause security to fail, or crash the server. For example, the message “incorrect password provided” tells an attacker the user ID provided was accurate and that they should focus their efforts only on the password. Use more generic error messages, like “data could not be verified.”