What is Network Penetration Testing?
Network penetration testing is a vital component of modern business cyber security. During a pen test, security testing teams simulate real-time attacks on your business IT infrastructure.
The purpose of a pen test is to identify security vulnerabilities that real hackers might be able to exploit. Insights from tests, therefore, allow businesses like yours to patch security weaknesses before you fall victim to real cyber attacks.
How Does Network Penetration Testing Work?
How security testing teams like ourselves at Defensity conduct pen tests is always different. However, network penetration testing typically sees us break down a pen test into five distinct stages.
Cyber Security Reconnaissance
To start a pen test, Defensity cyber security experts start gathering intelligence about your current cyber security perimeter. During this testing stage, we will attempt to identify what cyber security tools you use to prevent unauthorized access to your network.
After reconnaissance, we use data that we have been successful in gathering to determine how applications you are using to protect your network react under pressure. We also research know application exploits and backdoors to plan our attack strategy.
Gaining Network Access
During network reconnaissance and scanning, your IT network may not be aware of our presence. However, as we attempt to gain access to your network, we may start triggering security warnings.
To gain access to sensitive data, we use a variety of web application attacks to start intercepting network traffic. These can include attempts at cross-site scripting, SQL injection, and use of known application backdoors to breach your IT security perimeter.
Maintaining Access to Your Network
The ultimate goal of modern cyber criminals is to gain and maintain access to your business IT network for as long as possible. The longer hackers can exploit vulnerabilities without you detecting them, the more data they can access.
During a pen test, we will attempt to maintain access to your IT infrastructure for as long as possible, just like a real hacker will. This will allow us to identify persistent security threats that might one day result in major data breaches.
Other Network Penetration Testing Methods
As well as using pen testing to identify weaknesses in your overall security architecture, Defensity can also test for specific network and application vulnerabilities.
- A Defensity pen test can target specific software applications. This is always advisable when using bespoke or niche software applications.
- Network penetration testing can target specific security scenarios. Such scenarios can mirror social engineering hacking attempts or data breaches that can arise due to lost employee tech devices.
- We can run pen tests that measure the threat detection and response capabilities of your existing security perimeter.
Who Does Network Penetration Testing Benefit?
Staging a pen test is the only way to be 100% certain that your business IT infrastructure can’t be compromised by hackers or cyber criminals. It is, therefore, advisable to stage pen tests at least once a year.
As a rule, network penetration testing should also take place whenever you make significant changes to your business IT systems. However, it is vital that you have a reputable cyber security company like ourselves perform pen tests.
A poor pen test or poor analysis of pen test results can result in some security vulnerabilities escaping scrutiny. This being the case, don’t just trust anyone with your next pen test. Instead, contact Defensity now to benefit from UK industry-leading cyber security advice and support.
Most frequent questions and answers
Absolutely – a lot of our new customers come from incidents involving malware and data breaches. We offer a dynamic pricing model, which is based on clear pricing by the hour.
There cost will be estimated upfront, it will be a fixed price for a set amount of hours.
Some clients prefer to pay using a subscription model which is a set amount of hours per month to ensure we are available for them straight away. For clients that require Emergency Incident Response without being on a subscription plan we try our best to be there for them as soon as possible.