If you are not yet familiar with cyber security, it’s easy to confuse terminology. Xynexis International offers a range of services, from one-time risk assessments to on-going security improvement programs that seek to mitigate data breach risks from all fronts.
Penetration testing (or pentest, to use a common abbreviation) is one of our advanced services that we offer as we work alongside your organization to uncover weaknesses and take corrective actions to patch them.
What is penetration testing?
Penetration testing, or pentest, is the deliberate act of ethical breaching, also known as ethical hacking, in order to simulate a cyber attack and to evaluate the strength and reliability of a security system.
A team of assessors or auditors usually has a specific goal in mind when attempting to breach the system security. As such, penetration testing not only simulates how system security will react to unauthorized access, but also the worst case scenario in which an attacker has already recognized the most valuable assets to threaten or steal.
This process involves either gathering information about the target beforehand (to simulate how attackers might scan the system for vulnerabilities) or specifically targeting known system vulnerabilities after a patch has been made.
Is penetration testing different from security risk assessment?
Security risk assessment simply takes into account the value of assets (data or processes) and estimates the loss incurred should a breach cause a loss or malfunction of either data or processes. This way, auditors can set priorities to improve upon the security of high-value assets.
Penetration testing cannot be used to efficiently identify security weaknesses if it is known that a system already has security weaknesses. To save time and resources in the process of ethical hacking, a vulnerability assessment (a kind of general scan) is done first, in conjunction with security risk assessment, to gauge the severity and specificity of security weaknesses.
Therefore, penetration testing is done as a way to give assurance that a system’s security has been properly implemented. As such, the desired goal of a pentest is not so much to identify specific security weaknesses, but rather to know whether a system’s security is reliable after a patch has been made.
Xynexis Penetration Testing
Xynexis stays ahead of cyber attackers by thinking like cyber attackers. Our penetration testing report offers invaluable insight to how your security system can specifically defend against a wide range of attacks.
Learn more about Xynexis penetration testing.