Network Penetration Testing is a method to ensure targeted Network’s Security. It is one of several methods to safeguard against unauthorised intrusions into our network. It is also known as “pen test”. When it is done in a proper way, the results show as to which areas in a network are required to be fixed which were observed during the pen test or penetration testing. The main idea behind this whole process is to safeguard our network and devices connected to it from various cyber-attacks.
What is Network Penetration Testing?
Network Penetration Testing identifies exploitable shortcomings in a network infrastructure and ensures it to be resilient even against all new and advanced network threats.
In simple terms, it is a simulation of process, a hacker who is willing to intrude into our network and harm us in any way, would analyse the vulnerabilities and how he would launch an attack on it. A network may consist of various interconnected business networks, devices, network applications, databases and servers. Pen tests helps to ensure the business to achieve aa balance between maintaining the best network security possible while all business operations run efficiently without any possible security exploit. The outcomes of these tests also assist in better planning, continuity and disaster recovery. Although, Network Penetration Testing is a simulation of hacker’s methods to break into a network, but it is practised without a malicious intent. Hence, Network Security Professionals need to have formal authorization from the management before conducting such tests on the organizations network. Moreover, if such tests are not planned correctly or lack proper implementation, the results could disrupt the business operations and continuity which could be harmful for the business organization.
How long will it take to conduct a Test?
The duration of a pen test may depend on various factors like the size of the business entity or complexity of the business network. But most test take around one week to four week time from start to finish.
Network Penetration Test Methods
There are some Network Penetration Test methods that are used in this regard. These are discussed as below:
• External Testing
This type of tests, target the assets of a business that are visible online, like the web application, company website and email or even domain name server (DNS). The motive is to gain control and steal valuable data.
• Internal Testing
In such a test, the network security professional who has access to the application, through firewall tries to simulate an attack as a malicious insider.
• Blind Testing
As the name suggests, Blind testing is completely a blind test in which the tester only knows the name of the business organisation to be targeted. This gives a real-time approach as to how a network could be breached by an outsider.
• Double Blind Testing
In double blind testing, the tester simulates an attack without any prior notice to the network security professional. This way, he could not be able to react in such less time and implement a defence mechanism. This is a real-time approach and helps understand the scenario when an actual and real attack could break-in and how to deal with it.
What is the need of a Network Security Professional?
A Network Security Professional is an expert to conduct Penetration testing effectively and find out vulnerabilities in the network system.
Some services of a Network Security Professional are discussed as below:
• Data Breach Prevention
Frequent pen tests are carried out on regular basis to check for vulnerabilities. This way, the business operations run smoothly. It is very similar to a mock drill that are conducted in times of emergency. In a similar manner, pen tests are mock drill to check for possible shortcomings in the network.
• Application Security
If a business organization introduces a new application, then before putting it to use, it is important to implement security tests to check for risks. Moreover, if the application is equipped with sensitive data, then it is makes perfect sense to take services from a network security professional who will implement security checks on the application and ensures full safety.
• Security Control Testing
Network Security Professionals are well trained in various security control tools. These include network firewalls, different types of encryption techniques, data security and data loss prevention, multi-layered security processes and so on.
• Gap Analysis Maintenance
Network Penetration Testing is a not a one-day job. Hence, it must be performed on a regular basis to find out how well the business’s network model is functioning. It also helps to check for any gaps in the network that may breach security at any given point of time.
So, we see that Network Security Professionals have a very responsible role in every business organization. The job opportunities are abundant in this field and there is very less competition too. Chances of landing a desirable job with good perks are high. If you are interested in Network Penetration Testing, then you can join GICSEH and get all the practical knowledge from certified experts who have years of experience. Join today !!