Security Assessment is the evaluation of the security status of a computer system.
It is essential for the protection of your business to make periodic assessments of the security status of your systems and applications in order to ensure the protection of your business assets. Among the techniques of vulnerability assessment, the Penetration Test is one of the most effective. Experts at SecSI follow the guidelines from security frameworks like OWASP Penetration Testing Methodologies, simulating the behaviour of a hacker and identifying the vulnerabilities of IT systems to prevent malicious users from accessing.
This activity allows to identify and highlight:
- The vulnerabilities of the application and the infrastructure;
- The users that are most vulnerable to social engineering techniques;
- Sensitive info prone to data breach;
A Penetration Tester ensures a professional and ethic service: all the vulnerabilities identified and the sensitive informations acquired are protected by a secrecy and privacy contract.
A minimally invasive test that tends to identify a smaller number of vulnerabilities, but allows one to get a first overall view of the state of soundness of one’s information systems and put in place a periodic remediation plan. It leverages the effectiveness of automatic tools that detects the critical vulnerabilities in your system. It is less effective of a penetration testing, but less expensive.
If your security is a priority, the Penetration Testing is the most effective approach to evaluate it. A penetration testing emulates realistic attacks in order to provide you with a comprehensive overview of your security posture.
Penetration Test Methodology
In this phase, the Penetration Tester, through various tools, obtain information on the target system determines the network topology to be attacked, identifies publicly exposed services, obtains potentially sensitive public information from forums and search engines that can be used in subsequent phases of its activity.
Network Scanning e enumeration
In this phase the Penetration Tester identifies and enumerates all the services in the network of the target system; check all the versions of the services displayed, identify all the application frameworks used on web applications. Through various tools and portals that contain databases of known vulnerabilities, the Penetration Test searches for vulnerabilities regarding the versions of the enumerated services and sorts the services based on the level of vulnerability detected.
The enumeration of services is “half the work”: the services may have been patched, the vulnerabilities may not be exploitable. To confirm the potential vulnerabilities detected in the previous phase, the Penetration Tester tries to exploit the vulnerabilities detected in the previous phase to compromise the target system; Once you get access to the system you will have the proof to prove that the system is vulnerable.
Once obtained access to a system the Penetration Test will verify the security status of the attacked system trying to obtain administrative privileges (using “Privilege Escalation” techniques); it will also attempt to attack additional machines in the system network, so as to completely compromise the network.
What differentiates a Penetration Tester from a malicious hacker?
- The Penetration Tester is protected by a contract that makes its actions legal and defines the “scope” of its activities (which targets to attack, at what times, according to which modalities);
- A Penetration Tester does not cause damage to the test environment, and all operations performed are reversible, in such a way as to minimize the impact of its operations on the analyzed system;
- A Penetration Tester exploits its knowledge at the service of the client company, ensuring a professional and ethical service: all the identified vulnerabilities, sensitive information acquired by the activities are protected by a privacy and privacy contract, none of this information.