OWASP Zap vs PortSwigger Burp Suite Professional comparison

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Comparison Buyer's Guide
Executive Summary
Updated on Mar 20, 2022

We performed a comparison between Owasp Zap and Portswigger Burp Suite Professional based on our users’ reviews in four categories. After reading all of the collected data, you can find our conclusion below.

  • Ease of Deployment: Most users of both solutions feel that deploying them is relatively easy and straightforward. However, some of the users of both of these solutions feel that they are somewhat difficult to deploy.

  • Features: Reviewers of both solutions find them to be reliable and easy to use. Owasp Zap’s users particularly like its heads up display. One reviewer feels that Owasp Zap should offer a marketplace of additional options. This would enable users to customize it according to their specific needs.

    Portswigger Burp Suite Professional’s users note that it has many valuable features, including its wealth of extensions and its automated scanning feature. However, one feature that it lacks is a heads up display.
  • Pricing: Users of Owasp Zap note that it is an open source solution. Therefore, it is completely free of cost. While some users note that Portswigger Burp Suite Professional has a free version others note that this version is very basic and the paid version is expensive.
  • Service and Support: Most users of Owasp Zap note that the community support makes up for the fact that it lacks traditional technical support. Most users of Portswigger Burp Suite Professional think that the technical support that it offers is good. Reviewers were split as to whether or not the documentation that Portswigger Burp Suite Professional offers is good enough.

Comparison of Results: Based on the parameters we compared, Owasp Zap seems to be a superior solution. All other things being more or less equal, our reviewers found the full version of Portswigger Burp Suite Professional to be rather expensive to purchase. Additionally, some users of Portswigger Burp Suite Professional are not so impressed by the technical support and documentation that it offers. Finally, one user of Portswigger Burp Suite Professional implied that it would be a better product if it had a HUD like Owasp Zap.

To learn more, read our detailed OWASP Zap vs. PortSwigger Burp Suite Professional Report (Updated: May 2023).
710,326 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Featured Review
Quotes From Members
We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use.
Here are some excerpts of what they said:
"The solution has tightened our security.""You can run it against multiple targets.""It has evolved over the years and recently in the last year they have added, HUD (Heads Up Display).""It updates repositories and libraries quickly.""They offer free access to some other tools.""Two features are valuable. The first one is that the scan gets completed really quickly, and the second one is that even though it searches in a limited scope, what it does in that limited scope is very good. When you use Zap for testing, you're only using it for specific aspects or you're only looking for certain things. It works very well in that limited scope.""It's great that we can use it with Portswigger Burp.""The most valuable feature is scanning the URL to drill down all the different sites."

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"The automated scan is what I find most useful because a lot of customers will need it. Not every domain will be looking for complete security, they just need a stamp on the security key. For these kinds of customers, the scan works really well.""It offers very good accuracy. You can trust the results.""We use the solution for vulnerability assessment in respect of the application and the sites.""The most valuable feature of PortSwigger Burp Suite Professional is the advanced features, user-friendly interface, and integration with other tools.""It's good testing software.""Enables automation of different tasks such as authorization testing.""I am impressed with the tool's detailed analysis for penetration testing. AppScan can give only visibility, but it can't do the PT part. But the PortSwigger Burp Application can do both, and it gives much more visibility on the PT rating.""I have found this solution has more plugins than other competitors which is a benefit. You are able to attach different plugins to the security scan to add features. For example, you can check to see if there are any payment systems that exist on a server, or username and password brute force analysis."

More PortSwigger Burp Suite Professional Pros →

"The forced browse has been incorporated into the program and it is resource-intensive.""The solution is unable to customize reports.""The solution is somewhat unreliable because after we get the finding, we have to manually verify each of its findings to see whether it's a false positive or a true finding, and it takes time.""Lacks resources where users can internally access a learning module from the tool.""There isn't too much information about it online.""There are too many false positives.""ZAP's integration with cloud-based CICD pipelines could be better. The scan should run through the entire pipeline.""The work that it does in the limited scope is good, but the scope is very limited in terms of the scanning features. The number of things it tests or finds is limited. They need to make it a more of a mainstream tool that people can use, and they can even think about having it on a proprietary basis. They need to increase the coverage of the scan and the results that it finds. That has always been Zap's limitation. Zap is a very good tool for a beginner, but once you start moving up the ladder where you want further details and you want your scan to show more in-depth results, Zap falls short because its coverage falls short. It does not have the capacity to do more."

More OWASP Zap Cons →

"The solution lacks sufficient stability.""PortSwigger Burp Suite Professional can improve by having more features in the free version for beginners to try.""Sometimes the solution can run a little slow.""The initial setup is a bit complex.""The reporting needs to be improved; it is very bad.""There needs to be better documentation provided. Currently, we need to buy books, or we need to review online some use cases from other professionals who have been using the solution to find out their experience. It is not easy to find out how to properly do a security assessment.""The solution is not easy to set it up. You need a lot of knowledge.""PortSwigger Burp Suite Professional could improve the static code review."

More PortSwigger Burp Suite Professional Cons →

Pricing and Cost Advice
  • "This solution is open source and free."
  • "We have used the freeware version. I believe Zap only has freeware."
  • More OWASP Zap Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "It's a lower priced tool that we can rely on with good standard mechanisms."
  • "This solution requires a license. It is expensive but you receive a lot of functionality for the price."
  • "The solution used to be expensive. However, they have reduced the price to approximately $400.00 which is reasonable."
  • "For a country such as Sri Lanka, the pricing is not reasonable."
  • "They should reduce the license cost a little bit. It is $400 per user, and it would be better if they could reduce the licensing fee."
  • "There are multiple versions available of PortSwigger Burp Suite, such as enterprise, commercial, professional, and beginners."
  • "Pricing is not very high. It was around $200."
  • "I rate the pricing a four out of ten."
  • More PortSwigger Burp Suite Professional Pricing and Cost Advice →

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    Answers from the Community
    Anonymous User
    reviewer1526550 - PeerSpot reviewerreviewer1526550 (Lead Security Architect at a comms service provider with 1,001-5,000 employees)
    Real User

    Yes OWASP ZAP is a good option as it's an open source so always preferred but Burp Suite Pro  will give you more options, its one of the best tool to have for pentesters so defo worth it.

    Avinash-Kumar - PeerSpot reviewerAvinash-Kumar
    Real User

    First things first both are having their own merits, however in my personal experience ZAP can replace your burpsuite for sure considering the License. Also as the latest ZAP versions are covering more advanced techniques and spidering patterns with lots of options in it, it is worth considering ZAP. However remember that burpsuite from latest versions with inbuilt chromium and it's emerging plugin support (Installable jars) you can use burp to the fullest and you can keep it as a swiss knife for your web and app pentesting. Couple of extensions in burp pro are interesting especially the race condition one. I always prefer using Burp and at instances I go with ZAP.

    Questions from the Community
    Top Answer:OWASP Zap and PortSwigger Burp Suite Pro have many similar features. OWASP Zap has web application scanning available with basic security vulnerabilities while Burp Suite Pro has it available with… more »
    Top Answer:Stability-wise, I rate the solution a nine out of ten. I think it's stable enough. I don't see any crashes within the application, so its stability is high.
    Top Answer:I am impressed with the tool's detailed analysis for penetration testing. AppScan can give only visibility, but it can't do the PT part. But the PortSwigger Burp Application can do both, and it gives… more »
    Top Answer:I need the solution to be more user-friendly. The solution needs to be user-friendly.
    Average Words per Review
    Average Words per Review
    Also Known As
    Learn More

    OWASP ZAP (Zed Attack Proxy) is a free, open-source web application security scanner that enables software developers and testers to perform penetration testing on their applications to discover vulnerabilities and prevent hostile attacks. To date, it is one of the most searched Open Web Application Security Project (OWASP) projects, and an international group of volunteers is maintaining it. This tool is both flexible and extensible and is intended to be used by users who are new to application security as well as expert testers. For the users' convenience, OWASP ZAP has versions for each major OS and Docker platform so as not to rely on any single OS.

    OWASP ZAP focuses on being the “middle man proxy,” as it is positioned between the user’s browser and the web application. In doing so, it will intercept and examine messages that are sent between a browser and a web application. If needed, it will adjust the contents and pass those packets on to their destination. As is the case in many corporate settings, if there is already another network proxy in use, ZAP can be configured to join that proxy. A variety of add-ons for further functionality is available on ZAP Marketplace.

    OWASP ZAP offers a range of security automation options, including:

    • Docker Packaged Scans: A ZAP automation scanner that provides a lot of flexibility and makes it easy for the user to get started with the tool.

    • Quick Start Command Line: A rapid and straightforward scanner that is suitable for a quick scan.

    • API and Daemon Mode: Through a comprehensive API, this mode gives the user complete control over ZAP.

    • Automation Framework: A state-of-the-art framework that is not tied to any current container technology. This framework will, in time, take over the Command Line and the Package Scan options.

    • GitHub Actions: The ability to use any associated and available GitHub package scan.

    Benefits of OWASP ZAP

    Some of OWASP ZAP’s benefits include:

    • The ability to run an automated scan. Once set up, ZAP will deploy two spiders to crawl the web application and subsequently scan each page it finds.

    • It interprets your results and sends an automated alert. After scanning the web application, all requests and responses sent to each page are recorded. If there is a potential problem, an alert is created and sent to the user.

    • An intuitive and innovative interface. The Heads Up Display (HUD) is a new feature that provides capabilities right in the browser. It is great for people new to web security and experienced testers alike.

    Reviews from Real Users

    OWASP ZAP stands out among its competitors for a number of reasons. Among them are the solution’s automatic scanning feature, its ease of use, its ability to report vulnerabilities, and its being a free open-source solution..

    PeerSpot user Piyush S., Technical Specialist (DevOps), notes that "Automatic scanning is a valuable feature and very easy to use. The initial setup is straightforward. The solution is free due to the fact that it is open-source. The product has a strong community surrounding it to help with issues and troubleshooting. The stability of the solution is very good."

    Raj K., Business Analyst at Experion Technologies, notes, “The valuable features are that it's very simple to use and the user interface is very good, particularly for beginners so they can start the application easily. It's enough to refer to an online tutorial to be able to start using this application. It's not very complex.”

    Balaji S., Assistant Vice President at Hexaware Technologies Limited, writes, “The solution is good at reporting the vulnerabilities of the application. It can help us with security, SQL injection vulnerability, known vulnerabilities, et cetera. Any kind of a threat that we get in the development cycle, is what we will look for. This solution helps us find them.

    Many users like how the solution has improved over the years. As Alan G., CEO at Virtual Security International, notes, "It has evolved over the years, and recently in the last year they have added HUD (Heads Up Display)."

    Burp Suite Professional, by PortSwigger, is the world’s leading toolkit for web security testing. Over 52,000 users worldwide, across all industries and organization sizes, trust Burp Suite Professional to find more vulnerabilities, faster. With expertly-engineered manual and automated tooling, you're able to test smarter - not harder.

    PortSwigger is the web security company that is enabling the world to secure the web. Over 50,000 security engineers rely on our software and expertise to secure their world.

    Learn more about OWASP Zap
    Learn more about PortSwigger Burp Suite Professional
    Sample Customers
    Information Not Available
    Google, Amazon, NASA, FedEx, P&G, Salesforce
    Top Industries
    Computer Software Company31%
    Financial Services Firm19%
    Energy/Utilities Company13%
    Computer Software Company21%
    Financial Services Firm9%
    Comms Service Provider9%
    Manufacturing Company27%
    Financial Services Firm23%
    Comms Service Provider18%
    Computer Software Company20%
    Comms Service Provider11%
    Financial Services Firm9%
    Company Size
    Small Business13%
    Midsize Enterprise29%
    Large Enterprise58%
    Small Business21%
    Midsize Enterprise15%
    Large Enterprise65%
    Small Business21%
    Midsize Enterprise16%
    Large Enterprise63%
    Small Business22%
    Midsize Enterprise14%
    Large Enterprise64%
    Buyer's Guide
    OWASP Zap vs. PortSwigger Burp Suite Professional
    May 2023
    Find out what your peers are saying about OWASP Zap vs. PortSwigger Burp Suite Professional and other solutions. Updated: May 2023.
    710,326 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    OWASP Zap is ranked 9th in Application Security Testing (AST) with 12 reviews while PortSwigger Burp Suite Professional is ranked 6th in Application Security Testing (AST) with 14 reviews. OWASP Zap is rated 7.0, while PortSwigger Burp Suite Professional is rated 8.6. The top reviewer of OWASP Zap writes "Open-source, easy to install, feature-rich, with good heads-up display and community resources". On the other hand, the top reviewer of PortSwigger Burp Suite Professional writes "Excellent Intruder, Repeater, and Proxy features". OWASP Zap is most compared with Veracode, Acunetix, Qualys Web Application Scanning, SonarQube and Fortify WebInspect, whereas PortSwigger Burp Suite Professional is most compared with Fortify WebInspect, Acunetix, SonarQube, Qualys Web Application Scanning and Tenable.io Web Application Scanning. See our OWASP Zap vs. PortSwigger Burp Suite Professional report.

    See our list of best Application Security Testing (AST) vendors.

    We monitor all Application Security Testing (AST) reviews to prevent fraudulent reviews and keep review quality high. We do not post reviews by company employees or direct competitors. We validate each review for authenticity via cross-reference with LinkedIn, and personal follow-up with the reviewer when necessary.