If you’re responsible for the security of your company’s information technology infrastructure, then external penetration testing is something you need to be aware of. External penetration testing is the process of simulating an attack on your company’s systems from outside its network boundaries. This testing method can reveal holes that attackers may use to your company’s security, allowing you to prevent them.
In this post, we’ll discuss what external penetration testing is, why it’s important, and who should consider performing it. We’ll also take a look at the different methodologies used in external penetration tests.
Features of External Penetration Testing
Pen testing may be used to analyze the security of a variety of technologies, including:
- Web applications
- Mobile apps
- Network devices
- Cloud infrastructure
The primary aim of external penetration testing is to discover vulnerabilities that may be exploited by hackers. However, testers also look for misconfigurations and other issues that could lead to data breaches or system downtime.
Why Is External Penetration Testing Important?
An external penetration test can help you identify vulnerabilities in your company’s systems that could be exploited by malicious actors. These tests can also help you determine the extent of damage an attacker could cause if they were to gain access to your systems.
External penetration testing is especially important for companies that have a public-facing website or online presence. A successful attack against these organizations could result in financial losses, loss of customer trust, and even regulatory penalties.
Who Needs External Penetration Testing?
All companies should consider performing an external penetration test as part of their information security program, but some organizations are more likely to benefit from this type of testing than others.
Organizations that fall into the following categories should definitely consider external penetration testing:
- Companies that have a public-facing website or online presence.
- Companies with critical information technology infrastructure.
- Companies that handle sensitive data, such as credit card numbers or social security numbers.
- Companies that are in the healthcare or financial services industries.
Methodologies for External Penetration Testing
An external penetration test may be performed using a variety of techniques. The most common approach is to perform a vulnerability scan and then exploit the vulnerabilities that are identified. Other methods include using social engineering techniques and performing reconnaissance on the target organization.
- Vulnerability Scan- A vulnerability scan is a method of scanning a computer system or network for vulnerabilities. This sort of check can reveal known security holes in programs as well as operating systems.
- Targeted attacks – In this type of attack, the tester identifies a specific target and attempts to exploit any vulnerabilities they find. When a tester has discovered a vulnerability, this method is sometimes used.
- Exploit-An exploit is a program that uses a known vulnerability to gain access to a system or network.
- Social Engineering- Social engineering is the art of getting people to reveal sensitive information or jeopardize their security measures by using persuasion. Social engineers employ a variety of tactics, such as phishing scams, to attain their objectives.
- Reconnaissance– Reconnaissance is the act of gathering information about a target organization in order to execute an attack. This includes identifying potential targets and gathering information about their networks and systems.
- Phishing – A phishing attack is one where an attacker sends out emails disguised as coming from legitimate sources such as banks and credit card companies. These emails typically contain links that redirect users back to websites owned by attackers who want their victims’ personal details so they can steal their identities (i.e., money). Hackers may also use phishing as part of a larger attack on an organization’s computer network, using this technique to steal passwords and other information that can be used for unauthorized access into systems.
There are pros and drawbacks to each of these techniques, so it’s crucial to pick the best one for your needs. A qualified information security consultant can help you make this decision. Online penetration testing, also known as inside threat assessment or internal security evaluation, is an essential component of every information security program.
By identifying and mitigating vulnerabilities that could be exploited by malicious actors, you can help protect your organization from potential attacks. If you’re responsible for the security of your company’s systems, then external penetration testing is something you need to be aware of.
Who Needs External Penetration the Least?
External penetration testing is not recommended for companies that don’t have a public-facing website or online presence. These organizations are less likely to be targeted by malicious actors, so there’s no need to spend time and money on this type of security assessment.
If you’re concerned about the security of your company’s systems but aren’t sure if an external penetration test is right for you, then talk with a qualified information security consultant who can help determine what types of tests would benefit your organization most. They may suggest other methods such as internal assessments or network monitoring instead.
It’s also important to consider whether or not an external penetration test will provide any value to your business model because these tests require significant resources in terms of time and money. If the return on investment (ROI) is not there, then it’s probably not worth your time and money to pursue this type of testing.
In this post, we’ve discussed what external penetration testing is, why it’s important, and who should consider performing it. We’ve also looked at the different methodologies used in external penetration tests. If you’re responsible for the security of your company’s information systems, then external penetration testing is something you need to be aware of. Hope you’ve learned more about how an external penetration team can help you assess the security of your systems.