Cybercrime is one of the fastest and most lethal threats for organizations today across all industries; from data leaks to draining large amounts of money, they come in many forms and usually leave the affected companies reeling.
According to a report from the security industry, around 32 percent of the companies around the globe are affected by cybercrime, especially the small-medium companies that have even fewer resources to secure themselves. This looming threat has become so dangerous that the estimated cost of security breaches and cybercrimes to the organization throughout the world is more than $2 trillion.
In response to this, many companies today are developing strategies and defense mechanisms to prevent any such attacks and create a robust security system. However, even as the threat of cybercrime continues to grow and companies become wary of them, they continue to fall victim to the threat actors by clicking on malicious links or through any other numerous ways.
Therefore, it is no longer enough to just respond to attacks because, with the advancement of technology and security, hackers have more resources at their disposal. It is vital for organizations to utilize the services of the penetration testing companies and become more proactive in order to mitigate the risks and prepare a contingency plan for imminent threats.
How Penetration Testing Works
The unique element of penetration testing is that it assesses and uncovers gaps in the security system of the company before any hacker does. It is designed to simulate a real-world attack on the network system to gauge the response of the system and check the effectiveness of the security controls which are in place.
The attack vector points and security gaps are exploited, which – in the wrong hands – could wreak havoc on the security and stability of the system – it could potentially lead to stolen records, stolen intellectual property, compromised credentials, data ransom, stolen protected health information, and other adverse business outcomes.
To address these problems and to protect the business from any such future attacks, penetration testing companies attempt a planned cyber-attack on the system to detect any vulnerabilities and weak nodes which can be exploited by the threat actors for nefarious purposes.
The recommendations and insights which are derived by the penetrations tests can then be used to patch the discovered vulnerabilities and fine-tune the WAF security policies as well.
The Benefits of Penetration Testing
Risk Management – the external or internal penetration tests empower the company to manage and prioritize their risks. It is a proactive approach that identifies weaknesses in the system and allows the company to remediate them.
Protection of clients, partners, and third parties – with the help of the penetration tests, companies are able to secure the sensitive data and identities of all their stakeholders including their clients, third parties, and even partners.
It allows the company to understand the environment that they are operating in – by providing insights about the environment, penetration tests help the company in understanding the potential risks and facilitates them in devising an adequate response strategy.
Detects weaknesses which were previously overlooked – the aim of penetration tests is to look for backdoors in the system, and it looks for weak spots and vector points which can be ignored in normal routine security tests.
Enhances business continuity – for any successful organization, business continuity in the times of prevalent security hacks and data leaks is a primary concern, and one of the most common reasons for a break in business continuity is the security loopholes. Ethical hacking or penetration testing helps the companies to spot even the minutest of the loopholes in their network security which enables them to prevent hackers from exploiting the weak nodes of the system and gain illegal access.
Evaluation of the security investment – in an insecure network system, threat actors can breach the security firewalls and produce a denial of service condition, crash the service, or they can completely break down the servers.
All of this not only causes irreparable damage to the reputation of the company but can also cost millions of dollars for fixing the issues and going back to normal again. A thorough penetration test gave an effective and objective assessment of the existing security investment and gauges whether the configuration management practices have been adequately applied or not.
Protection of the company’s reputation and public relations – it makes many years of hard work, struggle, and large amounts of investments for a company to build their reputation, and it is all at risk because of security threats. With effective penetration testing, companies are able to create a robust security wall to prevent any such threats and risks from materializing.