Everything You Need to Know About Penetration Testing

Do you know an hourly infrastructural failure can cost up to $100,000 to a business? Though downtime costs vary from organization to organization, one-minute downtime can greatly affect business operations.

This is why more businesses have deployed penetration testing to protect their data and infrastructure. This guide explores how penetration testing for cybersecurity secures business infrastructure.

Penetration Testing: Explained

Penetration testing refers to assessing IT infrastructure to identify security vulnerabilities within a system. Organizations can assess their network or software for any faults that attackers may exploit.

Some of the infrastructural vulnerabilities could be network design flaws, configuration errors or software bugs. This assessment aims to find any weaknesses in the network and IT infrastructure.

However, you can also use this process to evaluate your security policy and ability to detect any vulnerabilities and security awareness across your organization.

Penetration Testing vs Vulnerability Scans

Vulnerability scans assess the environment and report all the vulnerabilities and weaknesses. The scans expose all the problems in the infrastructure but don’t prioritize them. Penetration testing not only scans for vulnerabilities but also prioritizes severe weaknesses. It recommends plans to address the highest risk first to optimize IT infrastructure.

Who Can Perform Penetration Testing?

You’ll need the help of an expert penetration tester for complex testing that requires digging your system and applications deeper. You’ll also need to employ a red team that can test a potential attack scenario to devise robust solutions and strategies against those attacks.

Alternatively, you can have a penetration testing program for less strenuous tests. You can use readily-available automated tools for simple tests if you lack extensive knowledge.

How Often Should You Run Penetration Testing?

There’s no single answer to this question because every organization is different. Some factors can help you determine how frequently you should run these tests. Such as:

  • Industry regulations determine how and when some organizations can perform security checks, including penetration testing.
  • Company size also matters. If you’re a large corporation, your business will be more at risk of cyberattacks. Therefore, more frequent penetration tests.
  • Budget is a key factor that determines when a business can schedule these tests. A small to mid-sized business can make do with an annual test, whereas a large corporation can afford semi-annual tests.

An illustration showing cybersecurity and network checks

If you want to run security checks and penetration testing to find vulnerabilities in your network and infrastructure, let SunRiver IT assists you with that. We’re an IT security consulting and compliance services team offering IT audits, security checks and other IT solutions to small and medium-sized businesses in Nashville. Contact us today to schedule penetration tests for your business.