Many companies believe they have adequate protection against malicious actors, but in reality, when you assess their network, they don’t. Hardware penetration testing is such a powerful tool for patching hidden weak points in your system before a hacker can exploit them. Although companies realize that they can’t make all systems 100 percent secure, they’re incredibly interested to know what kind of security issues they’re dealing with.
Hardware penetration testing is just as important as software. Read on to learn about the top penetration testing hardware tools and how they work.
What’s Penetration Testing?
Penetration testing, also called pen testing, is a process where computer security experts detect and take advantage of security vulnerabilities in computer applications. These experts, who are also called white-hat hackers or ethical hackers, facilitate this by simulating real-world attacks by criminal hackers known as black-hat hackers.
Pen testing helps to find out the weaknesses in your corporate networks by hacker consultants before attackers do. This is synonymous with creating a firewall against future attacks that are likely to occur. It’s a simulated cyber-attack where pen-testers use the tools, hardware, and software available to malicious hackers.
Although pen-testing shows you how cyber attackers will exploit your network, it allows you to mitigate any vulnerability before a real attack occurs. According to recent research from Positive Technologies, every company has vulnerabilities that cyber attackers can exploit. In 93 percent of cases, pen-testers can breach a network perimeter and access the network. An unskilled hacker can penetrate a company’s network if they don’t build a firewall against external vulnerabilities.
3 Important Tips You Need to Know About Penetration Testing
As organizations engage pen-testers to expose vulnerabilities within an organization’s network environment, these engagements will make the pen-testers open to more pen-testing information. Here are a few tips that pen testers should know about:
- A big part of penetration testing is using penetration testing hardware tools. To identify vulnerabilities, you must be able to automate scans and crack passwords.
- There should be familiarity with the pentest hardware tools. Companies need to research the best tools to use for penetration testing.
- Penetration testers have a lot of power in the digital world. They’re responsible for detecting and mitigating vulnerability issues.
Why You Must Conduct Penetration Testing
The value of the penetration test depends on several reasons. Organizations perform pen-tests to attain a wide range of goals.
Below are a few reasons why organizations must conduct penetration testing:
1. Defense development
As the cyber world evolves, an organization’s environment evolves too, making it difficult for existing defenses to protect the company’s network against advanced threats. Pen-testing offers useful data about what an organization should protect against and enables additional defenses to increase efficiency.
2. Regulatory compliance
Certain types of sensitive data need protection against compromise by data protection regulations. These regulations may require an organization to perform frequent pen-tests to ensure compliance.
3. Security assessment
As organizations pursue more robust cybersecurity to protect their operations and customers, the security assessment that pen-tests offer provides a more potent and proactive defense against malicious activities.
Types of Penetration Tests
Below are some recommended pen-tests that organizations can perform to protect their networks.
- Blind tests: A blind test can also be called a black-box test. Here, an organization provides pen testers with no security information about the organization’s system. The goal is to expose vulnerabilities that the company may not easily detect.
- White box tests: In this type of test, the organization provides pen testers with various security information relating to their systems to find vulnerabilities. Here, the organization proceeds with its research before involving the pen testers.
- External tests: For external tests, pen testers find vulnerabilities remotely. However, due to this test’s nature, they’re performed on external-facing applications such as websites.
- Internal tests: An internal test is one in which pen-testing takes place within an organization. Here, the pen testers focus on security vulnerabilities that someone inside the organization can exploit.
Who Performs Penetration Testing?
It’s noteworthy that pen testing is not the same as vulnerability testing. Vulnerability testing seeks to identify potential problems, whereas pen-testing aims to attack those problems.
The great thing about identifying these problems is that you don’t have to do it yourself. There are tools available to collect data to enable practical security analysis of the system. Since pen-testing seeks to exploit weak spots, there are tools available to show the weak spots.
Top Hardware Penetration Tools for a Successful Pen Test
A pen tester should have a wide range of tools to carry out his duty. However, these tools depend solely on the particulars of a pen testing engagement. Here are a few penetration testing hardware tools that a pentester should have:
1. Network sniffer
A network sniffer is a type of tool that collects the traffic that flows over a network. This helps the pen-tester identify applications on a network and search for easy to expose data.
2. Port scanners
Port scanners investigate and provide data relating to potential attackers. They identify open ports on a system, which helps to identify applications running on network access.
3. Vulnerability scanners
These scanners are more sophisticated than port scanners, as they identify both applications and vulnerabilities running on a system. Vulnerability scanners help the pen tester select a vulnerability to exploit.
4. Password cracker
Most cyber-attackers focus on cracking passwords to have access to confidential information of a company and its customers. Password crackers enable a pen tester to identify the strength of employees’ passwords to eradicate weak passwords that place them at high risk.
Security Advantages of Hardware Penetration Testing
Pen-testing is highly beneficial to every organization. It helps them identify loopholes in their security systems, avoid future IT security policy problems, and build a firewall against vulnerabilities. Below is a list of significant advantages your company can enjoy if you conduct pen-testing.
- Uncovers Hacker’s Methods: Pen testing aims to fake an attack on an organization’s website, making it look like a real attack. This way, they’ll be able to explore identified vulnerabilities the way a hacker will do. This helps them understand the vulnerable parts of the system and uncover potential loopholes in the network that hackers can exploit.
- Exposes System Vulnerabilities: Starting from the higher risks to the medium and lower risks, by the end of the process, they’ll produce a report showing all the problematic access points in your system and suggestions for hardware and software enhancements needed to upgrade your systems.
- Proves Your Ability To Respond To Real Cyber Threat: Once you can detect the methods that cyber-attackers use, you can deploy strategies to kick them out of your system if they get in. Since you now have the experience of how hackers penetrate systems, you’ll be able to deploy defenses and treat them as a real threat.
- Builds Trust With Your Customers: When a company experiences a data breach, it causes customer distrust. For example, Semafone conducted a survey that found 86.55 percent of 2,000 respondents said they were ‘‘not at all likely’’ to do business with a company that’s experienced data loss that involves credit or debit card data. IT penetration tests will help to ensure that you won’t lose your customer’s trust.
Many organizations have suffered avoidable cyberattacks on their systems, either internally or externally. Companies must know the kind of security issues they’re dealing with. Are you seeking the best penetration testing tool for your company’s needs?
RSI Security has got you covered. We are America’s leading cybersecurity advisory provider, assessment, risk management, auditing, and compliance services. We can help you assess your network, web application layer, and all other entry points into your system to test vulnerabilities and identify the places you need more security.
Contact us today, and let’s work together to ensure your organization’s cyber protection.
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