12 popular online vulnerability scanning tools
We’ve included both free and commercial options to meet your unique needs.
It is one of the most effective vulnerability scanners online around. This security scanner, founded by the Mozilla Foundation, will evaluate your website using various methods to find possible vulnerabilities and security holes within your web application and servers.
There are four types of tests: HTTP Observatory, TLS Observatory, SSH Observatory and Third-party Tests.
TLS Observatory and Third-party tests (from sites like ssllabs.com, htbridge.com, tls.imirhil.fr,
securityheaders.com, and hstspreload.org) focus on SSL security and HTTP headers, and show really interesting results such as vulnerable cipher suites, for example:
Finally, there is also an SSH service scanner that needs to be initiated manually. Most of the time it will require you to whitelist the Observatory IP address to generate an accurate scan by avoiding firewall blocks.
You may start hardening your server to prevent the most popular SSH attacks once you’ve established your SSH vulnerabilities.
Detectify is a well-known online vulnerability scanner that allows company owners, teams of infosec, and developers to automatically search for over 1000 known vulnerabilities.
Any aggressive attacks will be continuously analysed by its built-in subdomain monitoring feature. It also checks the top OWASP vulnerability tests on your site, allows you to integrate security scans with common dev tools such as Slack, Zapier and Jira, and exports the results of all vulnerabilities discovered as a summary or a complete report.
It begins by grabbing server information while pushing the first scan, then crawling, fingerprinting, and for subsequent information analysis, finishes with exploitation tests and produces the results of the scan.
The results will be displayed in your user dashboard when done, showing you the severity of the vulnerabilities found in your applications, as shown below:
You’ll see a complete list of security warnings and critical errors found on your website, from mixed HTTP/HTTPS content, to HTTP header vulnerable configurations, old SSL/TLS protocols, and much more.
Last but not least, Detectify will analyze your website against the famous OWASP Top 10 vulnerabilities list and give you a final score, along with quick links that offer more information about how to fix each security-threatening issue:
Vulnerability Detector Pentest Web Server
Another great product produced by PenTest-Tools, a company known for its broad range of infosec tools that can search the website against any form of vulnerability, is the Pentest Web Server Vulnerability Scanner.
Here, with the 20 free credits they sell to guest users, we checked the online web server vulnerability scanner.
The results show a risk rating summary, potential sensitive files discovered, vulnerabilities in remote command execution, SQL injection stats, arbitrary file reads, obsolete server software, misconfigured server services, discovered server software and technologies, as well as a robots.txt file and a complete HTTP security header check.
When you need to perform a few specific tests, this tool is particularly useful; in our situation, the 20 free credits were enough to run two scans from the same IP before suggesting a full deep scan for their Pro plan.
Although Qualys is famous for its SSL test, most people do not know that they also offer a complete vulnerability scanner that freely analyzes your websites. You can perform 10 free scans of any URLs or IP addresses through this service. For the following problems, the Qualys free scanner analyzes:
- Web Application Auditing for OWASP
- Vulnerabilities linked to the network
- Missing patches for software
- Conformance with SCAP
- Malware hidden
- Vulnerabilities of the SSL certificate
You’ll see something like this once the results are complete:
The results will be filtered by security impact level, from high severity to low severity vulnerabilities. As shown below at right, you can also see the associated CVE information for each specific vulnerability found.
It’s one of the best vulnerability scanners around, placing it high on our list; but the manual approval process does not make it the right option for those in a rush.
This may not be a well-known, but highly competent, web vulnerability scanner. In order to identify security bugs and vulnerabilities, Probe.ly will search your web apps and provide you with feedback on how to repair them.
It is possible to use Probe.ly to conduct OWASP Top 10 scans, as well as to verify compliance with PCI-DSS, ISO27001, HIPAA and GDPR.
It provides a user-friendly GUI that allows you to search your website in seconds. Once done, it sends you results via email and shows the complete information in your client area interface, enabling you to download the scan results for further review in PDF and CSV format.
ImmuniWeb Security Test is a solid, reliable product that performs security and privacy checks for web applications, including publicly recognized vulnerabilities, the remote server running outdated software, HTTP methods, HTTP headers (HSTS, X-Frame-Options, X-Powered-By, X-Content-Type-Options, X-XSS-Protection, CSP, Public-Key-Pins, and more), blacklist checking, remote WAF detection, and crypto detection.
The scan reports results within seconds with a friendly web-based interface and gives you a final security ranking, letting you know about all vulnerabilities found and whether you qualify as compliant with PCI DSS.
Other interesting data, such as port/protocol identification, SSL certificate information and full cookie security review, are included in the final report.
Upguard is a cybersecurity company in Australia that offers many solutions to help online startups keep their networks safe and avoid web violations.
One of the fastest we’ve noticed so far is their vulnerability scanner. It is also entirely free, a budget-friendly way to review your website against more than 40 security vulnerabilities and common CVEs of high severity.
Your server, web apps and network, including but not limited to middle-man attacks, cross-site attacks, fraudulent email attacks, domain hijacking attacks, malware infections, open ports and unauthenticated DNS records, will be automatically scanned by the platform.
The scanner will show you a summary of the business behind the domain name (in our tests, cloudflare.com), its cybersecurity ranking, as well as a full overview of and vulnerability identified on the domain name and web apps until completed.
Scanner for Web cookies
Web Cookies Scanner is an all-in-one website scanning vulnerability tool that focuses its tests on the analysis of HTTP cookies, related technologies (Flash, HTML5 localStorage, sessionStorage, CANVAS, Supercookies, Evercookies) and HTTP sessions, as well as scanning functionality for HTML, SSL/TLS vulnerabilities.
Three different kinds of cookies are analyzed by the search, such as third-party domain cookies, persistent cookies, and session cookies.
The HTTP header scan shows how secure your website is when it comes to HTTP header hardening and security, as you see in the following example (from our scan of mozilla.org):
Tinfoil Security Scanner is another great vulnerability-finding solution. This free scan gives you access to a trial period during which you can scan your website for vulnerabilities against a wide range of security holes, top CVE’s and fingerprints.
While their scan runs a bit more slowly than the others, it’s deep, thorough and lets you spot the hidden vulnerabilities in your code, server and network.
When finished, it shows you the results as in the following screenshot:
Although Sucuri SiteCheck has become popular as a malware scanner, it also performs a few tasks for scanning vulnerabilities.
The complete report shows you the results of malware testing, blacklisting checks and the status of firewall websites from third-party providers such as Google Secure Browsing, Norton Safe Web, McAfee, PhishTank and Spamhaus.
Important device details such as IP addresses (ipv4 and ipv6), web servers and signatures of application servers may also be revealed.
ScanMyServer is a free tool that can perform a range of PHP code injection tests, HTTP header injection tests, Cross Site Scripting attacks, SQL and Blind SQL injections, searching for common vulnerabilities and security holes.
You must first put an HTML badge on your website in order to test this service. The results should be emailed to you within the next 2 hours after ScanMyServer detects the code on your website.
This test performs a thorough scan and reports the findings that show recommendations for risk solutions. The account also allows you to conduct free weekly scans of one domain.
WP Scan of HackerTarget
While this is not a generic online vulnerability scanner, it works perfectly for those using WordPress CMS who have built their web page.
HackerTarget provides a free WordPress security scanner that can be of great use for detecting and hardening weaknesses of your blog or e-commerce or corporate website using this CMS after your initial WordPress setup.
Security checks include the security of the WordPress core application, installed plugins and themes, web server software and configuration for hosting.
The first test is free and performs a simple security scan of the blog you entered against the raw HTML code. By using Nmap NSE scripts, Nikto, OpenVAS and other popular vulnerability scanners, the second scan goes deep, enumerating plugins and themes and performing a massive WordPress audit.
Check out this article if you’re interested in finding more specific WP vulnerability scanners: Top 5 WordPress Vulnerability Scanners.
It will help you detect and monitor any security vulnerabilities in your network, servers and web applications by using any of the mentioned online vulnerability scanning tools. We recommend you run several experiments with various methods to optimize performance and cross-check the outcomes between all of them.
You can add automatic scans to ensure you receive your regular or weekly report by email once you have reviewed and found the right tools for you from this list, enabling you to proactively track outcomes. Most of the solutions reviewed here to provide both scheduled scans and even API access for your own apps to build built-in solutions.
Our cybersecurity API can be incorporated with your own apps in the same way that online vulnerability scanning tools help you identify potential network threats in your web apps and infrastructure to get a deeper insight into what is behind every domain name, DNS server and IP block