The best way to anticipate attacks on your IT systems is to mimic the methods of attackers to find vulnerabilities before they do and help you fix them. Penetration testing entails assessing the effectiveness of your security controls to:
- Determine if there is a potential risk to your critical data
- Recognize complex security vulnerabilities and mitigate them before an attacker exploits them
- Develop an understanding of attackers’ motivation and psychology behind picking up targets
- Uncover vulnerabilities and misconfigurations that could lead to strategic compromise and mitigate them
- Ensure regulatory compliance of industry standard bodies such as Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) by improving security posture
Penetration testing methods we apply
In a black box pentesting session, the pentesters simulate real-world attacks to gain access to a system or IT infrastructure and exfiltrate sensitive data. Thus, they opt for a Pentest approach with no information about the organization and no prior knowledge of the infrastructure. This type of pentesting is very effective because the pentester wears a black hat and uses a black hat hacker’s techniques to bypass the organization’s security safeguards. In other words, It is carried out from a black hat hacker’s point of view.
Gray box pentesting involves simulating an attack by an insider. The pentesters are given partial and limited information, like starting with normal user accounts. This sort of testing lies between black box and white box pentesting.
During white box pentesting, or what’s sometimes named complete-knowledge testing, the organization gives the pentesters all the required information. This type of pentesting is used when the organization wants to perform a full audit of its security and maximize the testing time.
What you get?
- Detailed high-level Executive Summary Report
- Step-by-step instructions for you to recreate our findings
- Data-driven risk analysis to validate results
- Recommendations for short-term, tactical improvements
- Recommendations for long-term, strategic improvements
- Remediation Tracking document
- Retesting to validate remediation actions. Upon your request, we review an assessment after your organization’s security concerns and vulnerabilities have been duly addressed. We ensure changes were implemented properly and the risk was eliminated. The previous assessment is updated to reflect the more secure state of the application.
- Executive presentation of the findings and risks
Our Penetration Testing Methodology
Penetration Testing is a methodological process. When performing pentesting assessments, Intellisec Solutions follows different standards and guidelines as a foundation for the assessments such as “The Penetration Testing Execution Standard (PTES)”. PTES helps the penetration testers to deliver an effective pentesting report by walking through the following seven phases:
1. Pre-engagement interactions and Kickoff:
Like any IT project, penetration testing needs great planning capabilities. Pentesting is not a set of technical steps but requires many management and organizational skills. An effective pentesting would start with a meeting with the client to have a crystal understanding of all their needs and vision. As a result of the meeting, It will describe in detail how the pentest will be conducted. Many important items need to be taken care of during the pre-engagement phase including:
- The objectives and scope
- A get out of jail free card
- Emergency contact information
- Payment information
- Non-disclosure agreement
2. Intelligence gathering
During this phase, Intellisec Solutions collects all publicly available information on your corporation with the help of numerous OSINT (Open Source Intelligence) tools and techniques. This data is used to assess the current state of affairs and acts as a foundation for accurate risk assessment at later stages of our engagement. Intelligence on the following assets is typically gathering: External IP addresses, domains, data leaks, misconfigurations, Internet of things (IoT) systems.
3.Threat modeling and Business Logic Flaw Mapping
Threat modeling is a security approach to identify threats against the infrastructure of an organization. Modeling and quantifying are always wise decisions in information security, and especially in penetration testing. Measuring threats in a realistic way will help penetration testers make good decisions later. The aim of this structured approach is the identification and ranking of threats and assets, using a method that aligns with the business needs of the organization, and then mapping them.
4. Vulnerability Analysis
Vulnerability assessment is the process of identifying, measuring, and classifying vulnerabilities in an information system.
During this phase, the penetration tester wears a black hat and tries to gain access to the infrastructure from a malicious hacker’s perspective. Mostly will be used during the exploitation phase.
Getting root privileges is not the end of the road. As discussed before, maintaining access is an essential phase in hacking methodologies, thus post-exploitation is required to not only maintain access but to spread into the infrastructure, to further compromise the system.
Reporting and documentation are critical aspects of any penetration testing because only well-organized testing can help the management in making data-driven decisions. In this regard, each report is customized to the specific scope of the assessment and risk as per your organization. Reports are comprehensive, with due technical details, but intuitive to read. Remediation strategy for each vulnerability is provided as well. The executive summary contains the following sections:
- The Pentesting scope: that specifies the target of the pentesting, including the scope (IP addresses and hosts), in a very detailed way. In general, it also contains what assets are meant to be tested and what is out of bounds.
- A background : that explains the purpose of the penetration testing and an explanation of some technical terms for the executives, if needed.After reading the background, the upper management, will have a clear understanding of the goal and the expected results of the penetration test.
- An overall position: that evaluates the effectiveness of the test by highlighting some security issues.
- Risk score: that highlights the general overview of risk ranking based on a predefined scoring system. Usually, we use the high/low scoring metrics or a numerical scale.
- Limitations: that were faced during the pentest. For example, the limited scope of penetration testing with temporal-space boundaries make it a hard mission, especially when you are working in a production environment.
- Recommendation summary: that are needed to remediate the security issues discussed in the previous sections.
- A Strategic roadmap: that is recommended to be followed to enhance the security posture of the organization.