Penetration test translated into our language pentest at the same time penetration test Also known as. All kinds of institutions and organizations that give importance to the data of their customers pentest serviceIt is given by professionals who are experts in the field.
Penetration testing is a security service that deals with the in-depth examination of all networks and systems by approaching the system to be tightened with an attacker's point of view. During the penetration test studies, all attack vectors applied by the attackers are applied to the target institution systems and tests are carried out.
Penetration testing can be automated with software applications or performed manually. In both cases, the process includes gathering information about the target prior to testing, identifying possible entry points, trying to find vulnerabilities, and reporting and feedback on findings.
The main purpose of pentest is to detect security vulnerabilities. In addition, penetration test; It can also be used to test an organization's security policy, adherence to compliance requirements, the security awareness of its employees, and the organization's ability to detect and respond to security incidents. Generally, information about vulnerabilities detected by penetration testing is brought together and grouped to enable IT and network system managers of the relevant organization to make strategic decisions and prioritize improvement efforts.
Pentest types It is divided into branches according to the target scope of the penetration test. For example, if the test covers a web application, the service provided is called web application penetration testing.
The types of penetration tests generally applied today are:
- Web Application Penetration Test: It is a type of penetration test that aims to detect security vulnerabilities in web applications. All web applications subjected to the test coverage by penetration testers are examined in detail and OWASP All security vulnerabilities in the standards are detected.
- Local Network Penetration Test: It is a type of penetration test performed to detect vulnerabilities that an attacker can access to the internal network of the organization and to close these vulnerabilities.
- External Network Penetration Test: It is a type of penetration test applied to detect security vulnerabilities at the external network point, which is the point where attackers can first access.
- Mobile Application Penetration Test: It is applied to detect security vulnerabilities in mobile applications that serve over mobile operating systems such as Android and IOS.
During the pentest studies, there are various risks that may be encountered, as the systems for the target institution are examined from a real attacker's point of view. Just as the attacker has the possibility of affecting the entire system in a real attack scenario, unconscious penetration testing can cause disruption to your systems. In order to avoid such disruptions, the pentest team and the system administrators of the institution served should work in coordination. With continuous communication and coordination, all risks should be minimized and without causing any interruption. penetration test should be carried out.
Steps of penetration testing It starts with the first stage where the contract is signed and the planning is done. At this stage, a confidentiality agreement is made between the consultant company that will provide the service and the company that receives the service, and it is acted within the scope specified in this agreement. After the contract phase, which we can consider as the preparation phase, is completed, the technical penetration test phases are applied respectively:
- Discovery Phase: At this stage, the penetration tester conducts research on the target institution and tries to expand the attack surface by collecting all the information it can gather. The information gathering step is one of the most important steps of the pentest. The more data is collected in this step, the more successful the penetration test will be.
- Scanning Phase: While more passive information gathering techniques are used in the exploration phase, more concrete and functional data is collected by interacting with the target during the scanning phase. With tools such as Nmap, Nessus, Burp Suite, the systems of the target institution are scanned. As a result of scanning, open ports, services and version information about services are determined.
- Vulnerability Analysis Phase: The vulnerabilities of the services running on the ports detected during the vulnerability analysis phase are determined. For example, if an outdated service is used, known vulnerabilities related to this service are investigated.
- Initial Access Phase: After the vulnerabilities are detected, they are exploited and the first access to the target system is provided and the infiltration process is performed.
- Ensuring Permanence: In the permanence phase, studies are carried out to remain active in the infiltrated system. If necessary, the penetration tester moves horizontally through the network from one system to the next. (Lateral Movement)
- Cleaning Phase: As a real attacker would, after completing the relevant studies, the penetration tester removes the tools he has installed in the system and does not leave any traces by deleting the data obtained during the test in order not to leave any traces on the system.
- Reporting Stage: The most important stage of the pentest is the reporting stage. In order to eliminate the identified security vulnerabilities, the report prepared must be extremely clear, detailed and understandable. The tests performed by the penetration test team are meticulously recorded in the report and presented to the relevant system administrators.
Penetration tests are basically grouped under 3 different methodologies. These methodologies are shaped by the perspective of the aggressor and the data he has:
- Black Box Pentest Methodology: Black Box Penetration TestIt is a pentest method in which the entire infiltration process is made from scratch by approaching the system like a real threat actor without having any knowledge about the target system. In this methodology, the attacker does not have any knowledge of the system and the black box penetration test reveals the best possible result in a possible attack.
- Gray Box Pentest Methodology: Gray Box Penetration Test, It is a pentest type that can be considered as a partial black box, in which limited information about the target system is given and the penetration tester is given certain authorizations.
- White Box Pentest Methodology: White Box Pentest, It is the type of methodology in which sufficient information about corporate systems is presented to pentester by system administrators. White box pentest method is preferred because it gives faster results.
Pentest methods are divided into 3 different branches as mentioned above. Blackbox methodology should be preferred in order to determine the possible effects of cyber events that may be encountered in real life scenarios in the most accurate way.
The most commonly used software during pentest studies are as follows:
- Burp Suite
- John the Ripper
In addition to the manual tools given above, some automated tools are also used to speed up the test work:
We come to the most important question; Why should we have a penetration test?
It is of great importance for your system security that the security vulnerabilities in your systems are checked by cyber security companies, their strengths and weaknesses are reported and presented to your information.
Despite all the care and efforts of you and your employees in security, there is no limit to the methods and tools that attackers can use to exploit your systems. Possibilities and risks change dimensions according to the level of knowledge and experience of the attackers.
For this reason, the security of your systems; It would be a more realistic and efficient step to ensure and increase security by having "White Hat" hacker teams who can act from the point of view of cyber attackers and know the attack methods and take precautions against these methods.
In addition, standards such as PCI, HIPAA, KVKK pentest (penetration test) makes it mandatory.