Keeping your website and other systems secure is very important if you are running a business. This can be accomplished in a number of ways, including penetration testing, which is the process of identifying vulnerabilities in your system by attacking it. I will be discussing penetration testing in this article, why it is important, which tools are the best for pentesting, as well as how to conduct it correctly. It is important to understand the many kinds of pen tests, as well as who should conduct these tests. Please continue reading if you would like to learn more about the world of penetration testing, regardless of whether you are just getting started or simply want to enhance your security posture.
Penetration Testing: Understanding What It Is
‘Penetration testing’ is the process of hacking into a system for the purpose of detecting security flaws within it. You can use it to test your system’s defenses and see if your system is strong enough to withstand an attack that would occur on a real-world basis.
It is true that there are different types of penetration tests that may be used, but they all have the same goal in mind: finding weaknesses in your system so you can fix them before an attacker is able to exploit them.
Penetration Testing: Why Is It Important?
A penetration test plays an important role in optimizing your security systems intelligently, as it allows you to detect possible weaknesses in them. When you find and fix weaknesses before they are exploited, you can avoid costly downtime and data breaches that can result in costly losses. Additionally, you can leverage a proactive security approach by using a penetration testing platform to enhance your security posture. It is possible to prevent security incidents from occurring by identifying vulnerabilities early on in the process.
Performing penetration tests can also help you ensure compliance with your company’s policies and procedures. The PCI DSS and HIPAA are two examples of regulatory frameworks that require regular penetration testing. As a result, penetration testing can help organizations fulfill their obligations to protect the data of their customers in the best way possible.
Best Pentesting Tools
Both open source and commercial pentesting tools are available, and there is a wide variety of them to choose from.
- The Astra’s Pentest tool is a cloud based pentesting tool that is easy to use, provides unlimited tests and enables easy collaboration between users.
- An all-in-one pentesting tool, Burp Suite, covers a wide range of testing needs, so it can be used for a variety of purposes.
- As the name suggests, Metasploit is an open-source exploitation framework that is free and available to anyone. The site contains a large database of exploits for a variety of different systems that can be exploited.
Methods for Penetration Testing
Penetration tests can be classified into four primary types: internal testing, blind testing, double-blind testing, and targeted testing.
Testing on an internal basis
Tests that are conducted internally are those in which the tester fully understands the system that is being tested. In order to determine the security of a network inside an organization, this test is used.
Tests conducted in a blind manner
It is important to realize that in a blind tasting, the tester has very limited or no knowledge of the system under test. The purpose of this type of penetration test is to assess the internal defenses of an organization against external attacks.
Testing on a double-blind basis
It is a form of testing in which the tester and the organization being tested are unaware of each other’s existence. A security test like this is used to determine whether the systems and barriers of an organization are secure.
The use of targeted testing
Testing which is targeted refers to a method of testing whereby the tester selects and tests only a certain set of systems or applications in order to pass the test. An organization’s key systems are being assessed as part of this type of test in order to determine whether or not they are secure.
Who Performs a Penetration Test?
An internal penetration test can be performed by members of the organization’s staff, an external penetration test consultant, or both. Finding a firm that has the right combination of skills and expertise to meet your requirements is critical. Also, you may also want to consider providers who have accreditation from professional organizations such as the International Council of Electronic Commerce Consultants (EC-Council) or the Offensive Security Certified Professional (OSCP), in order to ensure that you are hiring service providers who are professionals in their field.
Best Pentesting Tools in Detail
Astra Security has developed a pentesting solution called ‘Astra Pentest,’ that has the goal of simplifying the pentest procedure as much as possible for users. In my opinion, Astra has made remarkable efforts to deliver self-serving solutions at the same time that they remain available and on schedule with support. Maps can be mapped, navigated, and flaws can be repaired using Astra just like searching on Google for any other services.
There is a custom dashboard that provides the user with the ability to analyze the flaws, view CVSS ratings, get in contact with security personnel, and receive assistance with the remediation process.
There are several utilities included in the Burp Suite that have proven to be particularly useful for ethical hackers, pentesters, and security engineers. A number of add-ons are included with the Burp Suite, including a Repeater, Sequencer, Decoder, Extender, and many other enhancements. There are two versions of Burp Suite available for download: a free version for the community, and a paid version for businesses.
In order to detect recurring bugs, hackers and security experts can use Metasploit, which is a framework that can be used by both groups. There are a number of powerful elements built into the framework, such as fuzzing, anti-forensic, and evasion tools.
Many attackers use Metasploit Framework as a penetration testing framework that is cross-platform and can be used on any platform. Hackers love it because it is simple to install, and it is popular among hackers. Thus, it can also serve as one of the most essential tools for pentesters, as a consequence.
What Accreditations to Look For In a Pen Testing Provider
If you decide to hire a pen testing provider, you should look for organizations with accreditations from professional bodies, such as the International Council of Electronic Commerce Consultants (EC-Council) or Offense Security Certified Professional (OSCP), whose members are professional experts in the field of offensive security. It is the responsibility of these organizations to ensure testers have the required skills and experience by offering certification programs.
Dissimilarities Between Pen Testing & Vulnerability Assessment
The purpose of penetration testing and vulnerability assessment is to assess the system security and to identify any potential vulnerabilities, and both are related activities that involve evaluating the system security. It is important to note that there are a number of significant differences between the two, however.
- The purpose of penetration testing is to exploit flaws in systems in order to gain access to them. In order to identify vulnerabilities, vulnerability assessments are conducted as part of the vulnerability management process.
- An ethical hacker (a so-called white hat hacker) performs penetration tests on computers. Professionals in the field of security conduct vulnerability assessments on a regular basis.
- It is usually more expensive to conduct a penetration test than to conduct a vulnerability assessment.
Pentesting Tools Conclusion
It is important to perform penetration tests on a regular basis in order to maintain a strong security system. The best pentesting tool for you will depend on your specific needs, and there are a variety of tools that are available to help you. As far as cyber security tools go, Metasploit, Burp Suite, and Astra’s Pentest are all excellent choices. It is imperative that you choose a reputable company that has the required accreditations and credentials.