Some Mobile Application Penetration Testing Tools

The mobile application ecosystem is growing at a phenomenal rate. The ecosystem has given speed, comfort, and access an altogether new connotation. However, with a plethora of new mobile devices and applications available to be picked up by eager but unsuspecting customers, the concerns for security have risen as well. Not a single day goes without some hacking activity not being reported from around the world.

With the increase in use of smartphones, delivering a secure high performance mobile application is key to user retention. And with the recent data protection laws, it’s also important for users to know when you are collecting any data about them and why. Through mobile application Penetration Testing you’ll ensure there are no loopholes in your app that may cause data loss. In this article we are going to look at the Top 6 Mobile Application Penetration Testing Tools for Pen testing mobile apps.

For effective penetration testing, efficient analysis of a system or application in order to identify problems and collect data quickly is done through tools. In this article, we explore Top 6 tools that should be used for every penetration test for both Android and iOS.

As the OWASP Mobile Security Testing Guide points out, protecting applications on both Android and iOS devices requires many different tests and processes, including:

  • Mobile platform internals

Penetration Testing mobile applications should be a critical part of your overall security strategy. To help you facilitate this process, here are Top 6 Mobile Application Penetration Testing Tools for both Android and iOS:

  1. Drozer

Drozer is a security testing framework for Android. It allows a pentester to search for security flaws in apps and devices by assuming the role of an app and interacting with the Dalvik VM, other apps’ IPC endpoints and the underlying OS.

Drozer is an interactive tool, meaning a pentester will be required to install Drozer at his workstation and establish a session with the targeted Android device (either physical or emulated). This way, it is possible to select commands on the console (at the workstation) and have a Drozer agent execute them on the Android device.

With this tool, a pentester can:

  • Retrieve package information

2. iMAS

iMas is a free and open source mobile application penetration testing tool that is use for security testing an iOS application. It helps you to encrypt your application data, prompt for passwords, prevent application tampering while enforcing enterprise policies on iOS apps.

  • An open-source tool

3. OWASP Zed Attack Proxy (ZAP)

OWASP Zed Attack Proxy Project (ZAP) is a free security tool that can help pentesters to automate the process of finding security vulnerabilities in both web applications and mobile apps.

Used earlier for testing web applications, now it is used for both web and mobile application security testing to detect resident vulnerabilities. As it supports the sending of malicious messages, the testers can send a file or request using a malicious message. Thereafter, they check if the mobile app is vulnerable to any such message or not. Highlights

  • One of the most popular open-source tools for security testing


QARK stands for “Quick Android Review Kit” and it was developed by LinkedIn. The name itself suggests that it is useful for the Android platform to identify security loopholes in the mobile app source code and APK files. QARK is a static code analysis tool and provides information about android application related security risk and provides a clear and concise description of issues.

QARK generates ADB (Android Debug Bridge) commands which will help to validate the vulnerability that QARK detects.

Key Features:

  • QARK is an open-source tool.

5. Android Debug Bridge (ADB)

Android is an operating system for mobile devices developed by Google. Google is a US-based multinational company that was launched in 1998. It is headquartered in California, the United States with an employee count of more than 72,000. Google’s revenue in the year 2017 was $25.8 billion.

Android Debug Bridge (ADB) is a command-line tool which communicates with the actual connected android device or emulator to assess the security of mobile apps.

It is also used as a client-server tool which can be connected to multiple android devices or emulators. It includes “Client” (which sends commands), “daemon” (which runs comma.nds) and “Server” (which manages communication between the Client and the daemon).

Key Features:

  • ADB can be integrated with Google’s Android Studio IDE.

6. IBM Application Security on Cloud

IBM Application Security on Cloud is a tool designed to secure both web and mobile applications by detecting the most pervasive published security vulnerabilities.

IBM Application Security on Cloud can import both APK and IPA files, scan for vulnerabilities and create a report on vulnerabilities. The report details how vulnerabilities could be exploited by an attacker, while also providing information about how to correct the issue.

The focus here is on eliminating vulnerabilities from applications before they are placed into production and deployed, so there is no integrated exploitation module. But pentesters can still make good use of IBM Application Security on Cloud for analyzing both iOS and Android apps, identifying vulnerabilities and exploiting apps either manually or with the help of other solutions.


Security concerns have enveloped the mobile app ecosystem by a large measure. As these also involve data breaches and hacking of financial records, mobile app makers should execute a strong mobile app testing routine during the SDLC. With proper mobile app penetration testing, most vulnerabilities can be detected and remedied in time. By using these mobile app security testing tools you’ll be able to find and close these loopholes both through automated and manual testing. Mobile Application Penetration Testing will help prevent security breaches by stopping cyber attacks and malware infections.

Hacker / PenTester / AppSec / etc.