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Working with Third-Party Libraries and SDKs

Any vulnerability in third-party library can become a vulnerability in your application.


Shifali Bharti

Third-party libraries come bundled with the platform you are using and often save you from reinventing the whole thing. However, using existing libraries sounds easier but the process becomes complex and you can end up in a mess with code. And you might end up spending a lot of time fixing bugs or simply getting your code run.

Some of the third-party libraries will have new versions and will require you to update and re-test your source code. It is better to take some time and understand the vulnerabilities and security risks that may arise from third-party dependencies. Any vulnerability in the third-party library can become a vulnerability in your application.

Stability and reliability

Third-party libraries can’t be trusted when it comes to stability and reliability. For example; in May 2020, Facebook's software development kit led major third-party apps to crash on launch. And in July 2020, a bug in Facebook SDK led to a repetition of the same incident.

Hundreds of third-party apps were affected by this crash causing them a financial loss in the duration of the outage. It means several companies were integrating with Facebook's developer tools and built their binaries to enable ad platforms integration, account login, and analytic.

According to those companies, everything was under control before they pushed their apps to the App Store. But those bugs from Facebook were pushed to backends which cannot be traced once integration and builds are done. And once the crash happens there is nothing developers can do.

Hard to do third-party library updates

Third-party library updates are sometimes difficult to do. Sometimes an update can break things and put you in a situation of wither spending time on fixing it or leave it just like that only.

You can call library updates one of the riskiest ones. Even if you are done with the updates, you need to test your app’s behavior and monitor crash and bug reports while your app is progressing and building.

You'll need a lot of feature flags for API changes.


If you are relying on third parties that means your code is also tied to that particular library. And in case you have to switch libraries your code will have to go through significant changes in order to adapt to the new library. There is a list of evaluation criteria that several mobile teams go through before switching to another third-party library. The list involves areas like App size, upgrade risks, no maintenance risks, etc.

At Hashbrown Systems, mobile applications are built on API-driven features with serverless capabilities, on the cloud-first data model, that demonstrates low latency and is highly scalable. We take responsibility for managing the backend services of the applications.

We help organizations transform their ideas into applications and build high-performing enterprise apps at lower comparative costs.

Tap here and learn more about our mobile application development services.

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