What is Penetration Testing?
Network security is the security of the computer networking system to make sure the security of assets, hardware resources and software of an organization. It also refers to controlling and restricting the unauthorized access to a networking system. A system needs to be well secured to avoid all those cyber attacks. Security management is another key factor in network security. A system being secured is not good enough but managing the security to keep it intact is what matters the most.
In a network, security management is set of protocols, policies and procedures implemented to make sure that there is no any unauthorized access or interruption in the system. It also keeps in check the real time monitoring to prevent systems from virus attacks or any unwanted modifications. For making sure that your system is well secured and powerful enough, we do penetration testing.
The practice of testing a computer system, web application or a network to find out its short comings and vulnerabilities that could be exploited is called Penetration testing or Pen testing.
Why Penetration Testing?
Pen test is a simulated attack on a network by a cyber security expert to find out the weak spots in a system’s defensive mechanism. These weak spots are the reason attacks breach into a network. It is like Police hiring someone to play a role of a criminal and try to run from jail. If he manages to run away from jail, police will know how criminals can run away and they will work on those weak secured spots.
Every organization needs to know about security short falls in their network system to welcome those short falls. Some reasons why penetration testing is required are:
- To ensure the security of financial and private data when transferring over a network.
- To find out about all loopholes in the system.
- To ensure security of user data.
- To plan and implement a well managed security strategy.
Types of Pen Test
Penetration testing is done according to the scope that is provided to the cyber security expert to operate within. These are multiple types of pen tests available for different scope. Let’s talk about some of them.
- Targeted Testing
In this testing scenario, both the company’s IT team and testing experts work together as a team. Each and everyone know about all the movements. In this testing, IT team actually gets to know about hacker’s point of view. It’s also called ‘Light Turn On’ approach as everything is done openly.
- External Testing
In this testing scenario cyber security expert works on the externally visible assets of a company. In other words, everything that is visible on the internet is tested in this. It could be servers, application, website, email domain etc. The purpose is to only check if one can break into these things and if someone breaks in, how far he can go and access private data of company. Most of the time, experts carry this test out from a remote location.
- Internal Testing
It is a scenario of testing in which cyber security experts tests the security by doing an attack from inside emulating to be a company employee. By doing this test we can check how far the damage can go if an insider employee attacks the system of company. Because anything can happen anytime furthermore, no one knows a system better than the one working on it.
- Blind Testing
This scenario is the most real time attack scenario in which ethical hacker is given only the name of company. He will be doing other things all by himself. He collects information, makes plans. In this testing company gets to know how a hacker thinks and what he does to attack a system.
- Double Blind Testing
In this kind of testing cyber security expert (ethical hacker) and IT team of the company both are unaware of each other. Hacker only knows the name of company and company’s IT team don’t have any knowledge about the attack. Exactly like the real world. In this one, company’s monitoring and security and real time response time is tested.
- Black Box Testing
It is totally same as blind testing where hacker is provided with nothing but the name of organization.
- White Box Testing
In this testing scenario, hacker is provided with some insight information about the company. He could know security information like IP addresses, network schematics etc.
Penetration Testing Training
Right now, almost every company have realized that their data is not secure anywhere. They come close to only one option that is penetration testing of their system security. By hiring a penetration tester they keep checking their system for any kind of shortfall and they try to resolve that. So that their data and system are secured.
To become a penetration tester, one needs to take the InfoSec Academy’s pentesting training. By taking these trainings one can become a penetration tester also known as ethical hacker or pen tester. He finds out vulnerabilities in company’s system, application and website to give the company a chance to overcome those things to avoid a possible attack on their system.
There are certifications available like, GPEN certification, GCIH certification, and CEH certification at InfoSec Academy. Where CEH being the best in the business that makes you think like a hacker. It is offered by EC Council. Details about those certifications are given below.
- EC-Council Certified Ethical Hacker
This certification is offered by EC-Council and is also called as CEH certification. To qualify for exam, that is of 4 hours you need to attend official training or you can apply for it by an application process. This program is about.
- How to scan a system to find loopholes in it.
- Understanding various types of attacks.
- Identification of viruses and how to use them for system exploitation.
- Global Information Assurance Certification Penetration Tester
This certification is offered by (GIAC) global information Assurance Certification and is also called GPEN certification. In this program you become an expert is assessing systems and networks for any kind of vulnerabilities. You learn about different methodologies of penetration testing in this certification,
To qualify for this exam you must know the basic concept of pen testing.
- GCIH Certified Incident Handler (GCIH)
In this certification program you get to know about how to manage and handle security breaches and attacks by understanding all attacking techniques and tools used in attacks. It is centered on finding an attack, responding to it quickly and resolving it.
You also learn:
- Everything about the process of security incident handling.
- Attacking techniques used to compromise hosts.
- Finding out and resolving system’s loopholes.
There are more certifications available if you want to become a pen tester. In this digitized era, every company needs a good penetration tester to keep their security intact. You can consider this as profession any day.