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Security Testing Encoding

List of Topics

Security Testing Encoding

What is Encoding?

The process of putting a sequence of characters such as numbers, letters and other special characters into a specialized format for transmitting information efficiently is called encoding where as Decoding is a process of converting an encoded format in reverse to the actual state of characters. It is entirely different from Encryption which we normally misinterpret.

Encoding and decoding are mainly employed for data communications and storage. Encoding must NOT be used for transmitting vulnerable information.

What is URL Encoding?

URLs can only be sent to the Internet with the ASCII character-set and there are some cases when URL comprises special characters excluding from ASCII characters, it requires to be encoded. URLs don’t comprise spaces and are substituted with a plus (+) sign or with %20.

What is ASCII Encoding?

The Browser(client side) will encode the input data as per the character-set employed in the web-page and the normal character-set in HTML5 is UTF-8.

Below table depicts ASCII symbol of the character and its representation Symbol and ultimately its replacement which can be employed in URL in prior to passing it over the server:

ASCII

Symbol

Replacement

< 32

Encode with %xx where xx is the hexadecimal representation of the character.

32

space

+ or %20

33

!

%21

34

"

%22

35

#

%23

36

$

%24

37

%

%25

38

&

%26

39

'

%27

40

(

%28

41

)

%29

42

*

*

43

+

%2B

44

,

%2C

45

-

-

46

.

.

47

/

%2F

48

0

0

49

1

1

50

2

2

51

3

3

52

4

4

53

5

5

54

6

6

55

7

7

56

8

8

57

9

9

58

:

%3A

59

;

%3B

60

<

%3C

61

=

%3D

62

>

%3E

63

?

%3F

64

@

%40

65

A

A

66

B

B

67

C

C

68

D

D

69

E

E

70

F

F

71

G

G

72

H

H

73

I

I

74

J

J

75

K

K

76

L

L

77

M

M

78

N

N

79

O

O

80

P

P

81

Q

Q

82

R

R

83

S

S

84

T

T

85

U

U

86

V

V

87

W

W

88

X

X

89

Y

Y

90

Z

Z

91

[

%5B

92

%5C

93

]

%5D

94

^

%5E

95

_

_

96

`

%60

97

a

a

98

b

b

99

c

c

100

d

d

101

e

e

102

f

f

103

g

g

104

h

h

105

i

i

106

j

j

107

k

k

108

l

l

109

m

m

110

n

n

111

o

o

112

p

p

113

q

q

114

r

r

115

s

s

116

t

t

117

u

u

118

v

v

119

w

w

120

x

x

121

y

y

122

z

z

123

{

%7B

124

|

%7C

125

}

%7D

126

~

%7E

127

%7F

> 127

Encode with %xx where xx is the hexadecimal representation of the character