August 4, 2022
What is Penetration Testing?
Why You Should Invest In Penetration Testing, a penetration test, also known as a pen testing, is a security exercise where a cyber-security expert attempts to find and exploit vulnerabilities in a computer system. The purpose of this simulated attack is to identify any weak spots in a system’s defenses that attackers could take advantage of.
In the context of web application security, penetration testing is commonly used to augment a web application firewall (WAF).
Pen testing can involve the attempted breaching of any number of application systems, (e.g., application protocol interfaces (APIs), frontend/backend servers) to uncover vulnerabilities, such as unsanitized inputs that are susceptible to code injection attacks.
Insights provided by the penetration test can be used to fine-tune your WAF security policies and patch detected vulnerabilities.
The pen testing process done in five stages, which are given below:
The first stage involves:
Defining the scope and goals of a test, including the systems to be addressed and the testing methods to be used.
Gathering intelligence (e.g., network and domain names, mail server) to better understand how a target works and its potential vulnerabilitie.
The next step is to understand how the target application will respond to various intrusion attempts. This is typically done using:
Static analysis – Inspecting an application’s code to estimate the way it behaves while running. These tools can scan the entirety of the code in a single pass.
Dynamic analysis – Inspecting an application’s code in a running state. This is a more practical way of scanning, as it provides a real-time view into an application’s performance.
This stage uses web application attacks, such as cross-site scripting, SQL injection and backdoors, to uncover a target’s vulnerabilities. Testers then try and exploit these vulnerabilities, typically by escalating privileges, stealing data, intercepting traffic, etc., to understand the damage they can cause.
The goal of this stage is to see if the vulnerability can be used to achieve a persistent presence in the exploited system long enough for a bad actor to gain in-depth access. The idea is to imitate advanced persistent threats, which often remain in a system for months in order to steal an organization’s most sensitive data.
The results of the penetration test are then compiled into a report detailing:
Specific vulnerabilities that were exploited Sensitive data that was accessed
The amount of time the pen tester was able to remain in the system undetected
This information is analyzed by security personnel to help configure an enterprise’s WAF settings and other application security solutions to patch vulnerabilities and protect against future attacks.
In an internal test, a tester with access to an application behind its firewall simulates an attack by a malicious insider. This isn’t necessarily simulating a rogue employee. A common starting scenario can be an employee whose credentials were stolen due to a phishing attack.
In a blind test, a tester is only given the name of the enterprise that’s being targeted. This gives security personnel a real-time look into how an actual application assault would take place.
In a double-blind test, security personnel have no prior knowledge of the simulated attack. As in the real world, they won’t have any time to shore up their defenses before an attempted breach.
In this scenario, both the tester and security personnel work together and keep each other apprised of their movements. This is a valuable training exercise that provides a security team with real-time feedback from a hacker’s point of view.
Penetration testing explores existing weaknesses in your system or application configurations and network infrastructure. Even the actions and habits of your staff that could lead to data breaches and malicious infiltration are being researched during penetration tests. A report informs you of your security vulnerabilities so you know what software and hardware improvements you have to consider or what recommendations and policies would improve the overall security.
Penetration testers try to exploit identified vulnerabilities. That means you see what an attacker could do in the ‘real world’. They might access sensitive data and execute operating system commands. But they might also tell you that a vulnerability that is theoretically high risk isn’t that risky at all because of the difficulty of exploitation. Only a specialist can perform that type of analysis.
You should be able to detect attacks and respond adequately and on time. Once you detect an intrusion, you should start investigations, discover the intruders and block them. Whether they are malicious, or experts testing the effectiveness of your protection strategy. The feedback from the test will tell you if more likely what actions can be taken to improve your defense.
To make sure your business operations are up-and-running all the time, you need network availability, 24/7 communications and access to resources. Each disruption will have a negative impact on your business.
Penetration tests reveal potential threats and help to ensure that your operations don’t suffer from unexpected downtime or a loss of accessibility. In this respect, a penetration test is quite like a business continuity audit.
A cyber assault or data breach negatively affects the confidence and loyalty of your customers, suppliers and partners. However, if your company is known for its strict and systematic security reviews and penetration tests, you will reassure all your stakeholders.
Even despite best efforts and high investment, big players like Microsoft, Adobe, etc. faced zero-day threats in 2018, and Facebook, Marriott International, Exactis, etc. faced major breaches and hacks in 2018. This means that slip-ups in security and zero-days are a big possibility even for big players. So, it is vital that all organizations, big, medium, or small, engage in pen-testing to unearth unknown and unforeseen threats and risks for them to be able to prepare better.
It is important to note that small businesses are high up the target list of hackers with over 40-50% of small businesses facing some form of cyber-attack. If they are not well-prepared, then they may even be forced to shut down completely.
To determine the weakness in the infrastructure (hardware), application (software) and people in order to develop controls.
To ensure controls have been implemented and are effective – this provides assurance to information security and senior management.
To test applications that are often the avenues of attack. (Applications are built by people who can make mistakes despite best practices in software development).
To discover new bugs in existing software (patches and updates can fix existing vulnerabilities, but they can also introduce new vulnerabilities)
Pen testing should be conducted regularly, to detect recently discovered, previously unknown vulnerabilities. The minimum frequency depends on the type of testing being conducted and the target of the test. Testing should be at least annually, and maybe monthly for internal vulnerability scanning of workstations, standards such as the PCI DSS recommend intervals for various scan types.
Pen testing should be undertaken after deployment of new infrastructure and applications as well as after major changes to infrastructure and applications (e.g. changes to firewall rules, updating of firmware, patches and upgrades to software).
There are no doubts about how important penetration testing is with respect to protecting a business and its valuable assets from potential intruders. However, the benefits of a pen test cover all the network and data security concerns of any business.
It is essential that pen testing is done by certified security experts as they will be able to best use the security testing tools while leveraging automation and other technology to help businesses to continuously detect, protect and test their web application security and performance.
Check out : All you need to know about BurpSuite
Sign up to receive and connect to our newsletter
October 20, 2022
In case you’re keen on robotizing your web application in Mobile Safari on iOS or Chrome on Android, Appium can support you. Fundamentally, and you compose an ordinary WebDriver test and IOS Application Using Selenium with Appium worker with an exceptional arrangement of wanted capacities.
October 13, 2022
Visual Studio Code is a manager most importantly and incorporates the highlights of your requirement for exceptionally All About VS Code beneficial source code altering. This theme takes you through and the rudiments of the proofreader and encourages you to start your code.
November 23, 2022
Testing with TestCafe is another elective motor for driving programs. It is operated by novel innovation, which gives quick and straightforward cross-program testing for work area and versatile programs.
November 13, 2022
Here Automation testing of a mobile app in AWS Device Farm, A gadget ranch is a trying climate that permits QAs to distantly test the exhibition of versatile applications on countless genuine gadgets. It offers admittance to both present-day and heritage renditions of devices from different makers. Besides, these gadgets accompany pre-introduced OS and programs.
November 6, 2022
Setting driven testing is a model for creating and investigating PC programming that considers the manners by which the projects will be utilized or are relied upon to be utilized in reality. So as to effectively lead this kind of testing, programming designers must recognize the planned market and assess the situations where individuals are probably going to utilize the item.
November 7, 2022
An ever-increasing number of segments that used to be a piece of Kubernetes are presently being created outside of Kubernetes.
November 7, 2022
Cross-Origin Resource Sharing (CORS) is an instrument that permits limited assets on a website page to be mentioned from another area outside the space from which the primary asset was served
November 7, 2022
How to Dockerize Your Automated Tests In programming testing, test computerization is the utilization of programming separate from the product being tried to control the execution of tests and the examination of genuine results with anticipated outcomes.