How to Enforce Rate Limiting in MOBILEBot™ Defense

Last updated February 14, 2024 by Appdome

Learn to Enforce Rate-Limit Connections in Mobile apps, in mobile CI/CD with a Data-Driven DevSecOps™ build system.

What is Rate Limiting?

Rate limiting is a strategy for limiting network traffic. It puts a cap on how often someone can repeat an action within a certain timeframe – for instance, trying to log in to an account. Rate limiting can help stop certain kinds of malicious bot activity. It can also reduce strain on web servers.

Rate limiting is often employed to stop bad bots from negatively impacting a website or application. Bot attacks that rate limiting can help mitigate include:

  • Brute force attacks
  • Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS) Attack

How Does Appdome Rate Limiting Connections Work?

Traditional rate limiting strategies primarily focus on monitoring the number of requests coming from each IP address within a certain timeframe. By analyzing the time between requests and the quantity, these systems identify potential abusive patterns. While conventional systems rely on Web Application Firewalls (WAFs) to enforce rate limiting on the server-side, Appdome takes this security measure one step further by enforcing rate-limit connections directly within the mobile application itself.

In addition to this in-app enforcement, Appdome now provides app developers with the option to add multiple enforcement URLs to the Rate Limit Connections feature. These URLs function independently and are not linked to the main session headers protected host. This arrangement ensures there is no future dependency with the list under Session Headers, permitting distinct and separate enforcement mechanisms for each URL. Importantly, while incorporating these URLs, developers must ensure that the base URL’s length remains unchanged.

For example, if a user repeatedly attempts to log into their account and fails, traditional rate limiting might lock the account or delay further login attempts, typically based on the user’s IP address or username. Attackers can sometimes circumvent IP-based restrictions using different IP addresses, or they might exploit username-based limitations by cycling through a list of known usernames with common passwords. Appdome’s in-app rate limiting addresses these loopholes. By monitoring the login attempts directly from the application, it identifies excessive login behaviors more accurately, regardless of any IP address changes or username strategies employed by attackers. Users making frequent unsuccessful login attempts will encounter a message indicating they’ve exceeded the allowed number of tries, advising them when they can attempt to log in again or that their account access has been temporarily restricted.

Prerequisites for Using Rate-Limit Connections:

To use Appdome’s mobile app security build system to Enforce Rate-Limit Connections , you’ll need:

Enforce Rate-Limit Connections on Mobile apps using Appdome

On Appdome, follow these 3 simple steps to create self-defending Mobile Apps that Enforce Rate-Limit Connections without an SDK or gateway:

  1. Upload the Mobile App to Appdome.

    1. Upload an app to Appdome’s Mobile App Security Build System

    2. Upload Method: Appdome Console or DEV-API
    3. Mobile App Formats: .ipa for iOS, or .apk or .aab for Android
    4. Rate-Limit Connections Compatible With: Obj-C, C+, Java, JS, C#, C++, Swift, Kotlin, Flutter, React Native, Unity, Xamarin, and more
  2. Build the feature: Rate-Limit Connections.

    1. Building Rate-Limit Connections by using Appdome’s DEV-API:

      1. Create and name the Fusion Set (security template) that will contain the Rate-Limit Connections feature as shown below:
      2. fusion set that contains Rate-Limit Connections

        Figure 1: Fusion Set that will contain the Rate-Limit Connections feature
        Note: Naming the Fusion Set to correspond to the protection(s) selected is for illustration purposes only (not required).

      3. Follow the steps in Sections 2.2.1-2.2.2 of this article, Building the Rate-Limit Connections feature via Appdome Console, to add the Rate-Limit Connections feature to this Fusion Set.

      4. Open the Fusion Set Detail Summary by clicking the “...” symbol on the far-right corner of the Fusion Set, as shown in Figure 1 above, and get the Fusion Set ID from the Fusion Set Detail Summary (as shown below): fusion Set Detail Summary image

        Figure 2: Fusion Set Detail Summary
        Note: Annotating the Fusion Set to identify the protection(s) selected is optional only (not mandatory).

      5. Follow the instructions below to use the Fusion Set ID inside any standard mobile DevOps or CI/CD toolkit like Bitrise, App Center, Jenkins, Travis, Team City, Cirlce CI or other system:
        1. Build an API for the app – for instructions, see the tasks under Appdome API Reference Guide
        2. Look for sample APIs in Appdome’s GitHub Repository
    2. Building the Rate-Limit Connections feature via Appdome Console

      To build the Rate-Limit Connections protection by using Appdome Console, follow the instructions below.

      1. Where: Inside the Appdome Console, go to Build > Anti Bot Tab > Secure Communication section.
      2. When you select the Rate-Limit Connections you'll notice that your Fusion Set you created in step 2.1.1 now bears the icon of the protection category that contains Rate-Limit Connections

        Fusion Set applied Rate-Limit Connections

        Figure 4: Fusion Set that displays the newly added Rate-Limit Connections protection

      3. Click Build My App at the bottom of the Build Workflow (shown in Figure 3).
    Congratulations!  The Rate-Limit Connections protection is now added to the mobile app

Using Appdome, there are no development or coding prerequisites to build secured Mobile Apps by using Rate-Limit Connections. There is no SDK and no library to code or implement in the app and no gateway to deploy in your network. All protections are built into each app and the resulting app is self-defending and self-protecting.

Releasing and Publishing Mobile Apps with Rate-Limit Connections

After successfully securing your app by using Appdome, there are several available options to complete your project, depending on your app lifecycle or workflow. These include:

Related Articles:

If you have any questions, please send them our way at or via the chat window on the Appdome platform.

Thank you!

Thanks for visiting Appdome! Our mission is to secure every app on the planet by making mobile app security easy. We hope we’re living up to the mission with your project.

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