Hacking attacks can be stressful to manage, but when you add in that they can strike when you least expect them to, it gets a lot worse. You’ll never know how you respond to such an event unless you simulate it and replicate it somehow. This is what the penetration test is used for; it provides your business with a way to prepare for cyberattacks.
Understanding the Penetration Test
When you perform a penetration test, you check your infrastructure to see where it cracks against a cybersecurity attack. These tests are performed by trained IT professionals who simulate the methods used by real-life attackers. The goal is to find where your business might be most vulnerable to infiltration.
A penetration test will often be performed with a goal in mind. You might need to know which systems are most vulnerable to hackers, and in the process, you might discover that one particular system is more vulnerable than you previously thought. Penetration tests are vital to stopping data breaches and for laying out how you plan to respond to them. It’s much better to keep issues from developing into larger problems.
The Various Types of Testing
First, we should outline the difference between a penetration test and a vulnerability assessment. With the latter, you are just getting a list of what needs to be addressed, while a penetration test is more of a simulated attack against your infrastructure to see how it responds to the attack. Here are three ways that a penetration test is generally performed:
- Black box testing – The tester goes in blind; in other words, they know nothing about the network or what to target. This type of testing might be used if there are no specific problems that need to be addressed.
- White box testing – The tester goes in with full understanding of the network, often looking for specific problems that need to be addressed.
- Gray box testing – The tester has partial knowledge of the network. In other words, they don’t have the whole picture, but they have some of it.
The results will show just how far the data breach got, what was stolen, and other important metrics that you’ll need to keep in mind for resolving problems like these in the future. Not all security plans are fool-proof, which is why there is a necessity for such a test in the first place. It’s up to you and your security team to ensure that such an attack cannot occur for real.
Get Started Today
Small businesses can often struggle with technology management, especially with so few resources at their disposal compared to larger enterprises. This is why we offer comprehensive IT solutions that can fit into just about any budget. If your business can overcome the challenges presented by cybersecurity, then you can go about your day-to-day operations with greater confidence.
To learn more about how we can assist with penetration testing and other proactive, preventative security measures, reach out to Aspire at (469) 272-0777.