Penetration testing is also referred to as ethical hacking or pen testing. It is a process where ethical hackers perform a simulated attack on their company’s computers, networks, and applications to find out vulnerabilities that an actual hacker might use to carry out an attack. This helps a company identify the bugs, flaws, and vulnerabilities in its security system.
These simulated white hat attacks are completely unbiased and are performed like real attacks. After doing penetration testing the security team knows their blind spots. Penetration testing is very important because it gives you the perspective of an actual attacker. Every company must do penetration testing. Here are 10 reasons why:
#1. Penetration testing helps identify and fix vulnerabilities
Doesn’t matter how secure you think your system is it can never be 100% protected and free from vulnerabilities. It is a myth that no one can conduct a cyber attack on your system because there are always some loopholes. Penetration testing uncovers these hidden vulnerabilities before cyber criminals so that you can fix them before anyone else take advantage of them. Pen testing is like conducting a complete security scan of your system.
#2. Penetration testing prioritizes the risk level of vulnerabilities
The team of ethical hackers that will conduct the penetration testing will prioritize the risk level of vulnerabilities for you. The risk level of vulnerabilities would be categorized as low risk, medium risk, and high risk. They will also provide you with a timeline to address these issues. Based on the prioritization you can allocate your time and resources efficiently.
#3. Penetration testing helps you comply with standards
There are many different security standards and regulations that certain companies and businesses need to comply with if they want to operate within legal boundaries. Based on your business you might need to follow some standards either it could be HIPAA, GDPR, PCI, DSS, FFEIC, or GLBA. Penetration testing is important because it will uncover the security gaps which are preventing you from complying with these standards. For instance, if your company stores personal or health information of clients then you must adhere to GDPR or HIPAA.
#4. Penetration testing saves you from recovery costs & downtime
You can understand the importance of pen testing by knowing that it is a proactive approach that helps you avoid any sort of cyber-attack instead of reacting after an attack is carried out. By conducting pen testing at least once or twice a year you can fix all major security issues and save all the costs reserved for recovery. It will ensure that your business doesn’t face any downtime. According to the report of IBM security, the average time for identifying a breach is 207 days and costs around $3.8 million.
#5. Penetration testing creates a roadmap for improvements
Whenever there are significant upgrades, addition of new applications, new infrastructure is established, or new security patches are applied you should perform pen testing. It will give you a clear roadmap instructing when you need to make improvements and how much time and resources must be allocated. It makes the work of the security team seamless and they can make informed decisions.
#6. Penetration testing keeps you reliable and trustworthy
If a cyber attack happens on your company or business you will lose all your customer trust, reliability, and credibility. Your customers and partners won’t see your business to be trustworthy enough. This is a threat that is hanging over the shoulders of every organization that doesn’t perform penetration testing. Pen testing is very important in maintaining the reputation of your business and keeping it trustworthy for customers.
#7. Penetration testing evaluates incidental response
Cyber security incidents can happen at any time and your security team needs to be on alert all the time. When the team of ethical hackers performs pen testing, they can evaluate how the Incidental Response (IR) team will react. Based on the response of Incident Response (IR) specialists they can analyze what needs to be improved and optimize their response strategy.
#8. Penetration testing increases security awareness
We know that penetration testing helps secure you from all kinds of cyber-attacks but that’s not all for the team of pen testing. They also help the employees in understanding the best security practices which need to be followed. It makes them more cautious of cyber-attacks and increases their security awareness.
#9. Penetration testing implements efficient security measures
The penetration testing team provides you with very useful insights that will tell you what’s at risk and what will be impacted in case of an attack. Besides that, they will give you some recommendations as well on which security tasks can be automated. It is very important to implement these recommended security measures as they will increase the overall efficiency of your security team.
#10. Penetration testing provides protection from cyber attacks
Besides all the reasons which make penetration testing important we can’t ignore the fact that it improves the overall security of your company. Every step of penetration testing is to provide protection from cyber-attacks. It tells you an unbiased and real-world truth of where your current security team stands against cyber-attacks. These weaknesses in your security help you improve and stay protected.