Why You Need Penetration Testing

Why You Need Penetration Testing

When you invest in cybersecurity in Miami, you implement strategies, systems and training to help protect against cyberattacks. In theory, the tools and systems you have in place should reduce your risk of an attack, but how can you know for sure?

That's where penetration testing comes into play. What exactly is penetration testing and why do you need it?

What is Penetration Testing?

Penetration testing is sometimes referred to as “ethical hacking.” The goal of the process is to evaluate your system for vulnerabilities to threats. For example, things like configuration errors, software bugs and design flaws can make a system more susceptible to cyberattacks.

During a pen test, attempts are made to break or hack into a system. 

Every organization can benefit from regular penetration testing to ensure their IT infrastructure is well-protected.

Simulated attacks help organizations pinpoint weak spots in their systems and gain insight into how hackers may attempt to gain access to sensitive information. 

There are a few main types of pen testing:

  • Internal/external infrastructure: Evaluates the cloud network and on-site infrastructure, including system hosts, firewalls, routers and switches. 
  • Wireless: Targets the organization’s WLAN, Bluetooth, Z-Wave and ZigBee to identify encryption weaknesses and rogue access points.
  • Mobile Application: Tests mobile applications on operating systems to determine whether there are issues with data leakage, authorization, authentication or session handling.
  • Web Application: Evaluates custom web applications to identify flaws that could be exploited.

The amount of information shared prior to a simulated attack can have a great influence on its outcome.

  • White Box Testing: With this type of testing, all network and system information is shared with the tester. Sharing this information saves time and expenses, but it also helps the tester simulate attacks using as many attack vectors as possible.
  • Black Box Testing: With this type of testing, no information is shared prior to the engagement. Black box testing is often viewed as the most authentic because the tester is taking the same unprivileged approach a true attacker would take.
  • Grey Box Testing: With this type of testing, the tester is given only a limited amount of information, such as login credentials.

Many organizations find that grey box testing is a good compromise between black and white box testing.

Why Do You Need Penetration Testing?

Why should an organization invest in penetration testing? Is it really worth it? Yes.

Penetration tests simulate a cyberattack, which helps teams understand how to react to an actual attack and the next steps to take. 

The goal of penetration tests is to identify risks and vulnerabilities. Knowing and understanding these risks can help an organization invest in new security tools or establish new protocols to mitigate them.

Penetration tests can sometimes reveal multiple vulnerabilities that an organization had no idea even existed. 

Get Help from a Cybersecurity Company in Miami

Organizations of all sizes can benefit from penetration testing at least once a year and also whenever they change their IT infrastructure or applications. Working with a cybersecurity company can help your Miami business engage in penetration testing and ensure you have solid security measures in place to protect against attacks.