Why is Java a secure language?
Java is a very popular object-oriented programming language created in 1972 but it has still remained one of the most essential languages throughout decades. Java was one of the first choices back then as it’s then competitor C and C++ did not have much security in application development. In this article we will be briefly discussing the security features in Java and what makes it so secure.
Features that make Java a secure language –
- Java Virtual Machine: Java codes are executed in a virtual machine and are converted to byte codes. JVM checks the byte-code every time a new code is getting executed. Java has object access restrictions and this JVM verifies if anyway the control jumps to any unsafe location or any inaccessible objects are being accessed. It provides an extra layer of safety.
- Lack of Pointers: Unlike C++ and various other languages Java do not support pointers. The reason for its absence is to maintain the security. A pointer might point to an unauthorised object and this might be used to manipulate the object. To avoid such conditions pointers are not present in Java.
- Security API: APIs are basically a way of communication between applications and services. Java has multiple class libraries which provides secure APIs and hence each internal communication is verified for authentication by these APIs.
- Byte-Code: When a new code is compiled in java, it converts it into a Byte-code class file which is checked by the JVM for erroneous access to unauthorised data.
Sandbox: This is a restricted area where the java applets are run. Applets cannot access resources before they are verified by JVM.
- Memory management: Java handles its memory automatically, i.e., all the garbage collections are done automatically. This removes the chance of human error or negligence. This is one of the most important features for providing security.
- Exception Handling: Java has extreme error handling features to and does not let the user execute the program until all the errors are removed.
- Cryptographic Security: Java contains a class called Java.security.SouceCode which keeps information about which resources are being used which provides cryptographic security.
- Secure Communication: Java provides Simple Authentication and Security Layer (SASL) which gives security to SSL, TLS, and DTLS protocols.
Hope you get a brief picture of why Java is so secure and is preferred for this reason for projects which require more security.