Numerous security firms perform penetration testing and red teaming. However, determining the security firm suitable for your organization is difficult. So how do you select the right firm for your Pentesting services? One must consider factors such as the firm’s experience, methodology, and cost-effectiveness while making the right choice.
Security threats are increasing at an alarming rate in today’s dynamic digital world. The year 2022 saw nearly 236.7 million ransomware attacks worldwide. With organizations being more vulnerable to cyberattacks, businesses of all sizes should conduct penetration testing and regularly improve their security.
Furthermore, it is critical to recognize that lack of vulnerabilities discovered during penetration testing can indicate one of two things:
- Either there are no vulnerabilities in the application/network being tested; or
- Your testing team has failed to identify existing vulnerabilities.
Unfortunately, if it’s the latter, you’ll usually find out when the vulnerability is exposed in a breach or when your client conducts their testing and discovers the problem.
Key Factors to Consider When Hiring a Security Testing Firm
When choosing a penetration testing firm, it is critical to consider the testing team’s certifications, such as CEH (Certified Ethical hacker), OSCP (Offensive Security Certified Professional), and other relevant qualifications. However, evaluating the company’s credentials to ensure competence is equally important.
Surprisingly, only a few companies have obtained the two important credentials, PCI ASV & CREST, which necessitate rigorous assessments and process reviews to demonstrate their competence to the councils. These credentials demonstrate that the company meets the established high standards, and it ensures that only the best of firms are chosen.
- PCI ASV
PCI (Payment Card Industry) has a credit card connotation, but to become an ASV (Approved Scanning Vendor), a company must undergo an intensive test in which an environment is set up. The company must find and report vulnerabilities in that environment to the PCI council. The environment is designed to mimic a real-world production environment, and the report generated could easily be several hundred pages long. Many significant investment and financial services firms have mandated that their vendors be tested by a PCI ASV, even if there are no credit cards in the environment, to differentiate the firm’s quality.
CREST is a European-based certification that verifies that the testing team follows consistent processes and tools (among other things) across their team and that it is not up to the individual tester to ‘figure it out.’ It seeks to transform testing from an art to a science wherever possible.
Is your security company available when you need them? Do they have a large enough team to respond quickly if you need something tested? Do they have experience in various environments? On a multi-test contract (either testing multiple times a year or for multiple years), they can also frequently change the person performing the test. Although this is slightly less efficient than having the same person do it for years, it allows a different perspective on the application or network, as well as attack scenarios. As much as we try to make testing a science, there is also an element of art to it.
3. Delivery Process and Platform
The delivery process and platform are crucial when hiring a security testing firm. It is essential to understand how the testing results will be delivered, how the report will be accessed and secured, and whether there will be a platform for analyzing the results over time and collaborating on vulnerability fixes. Furthermore, clear communication and regular updates on the test status can aid in the delivery process.
4. FAQs to Ask Yourself When Choosing the Right Security
Maximizing Your Investment
When looking for a security testing firm to partner with, it’s important to compare similar factors rather than focusing solely on cost. While cost is unquestionably important, neglecting essential qualities like experience, expertise, and reliability can have long-term consequences. Choosing an unreliable or inexperienced firm to save costs could result in much higher costs later, making it imperative to carefully consider all factors before making a decision.
Accorian’s Pentesting Procedure
1. Data Collection
Accorian utilizes various data collection techniques, including web page source code analysis and unrestricted tools and services, to gather comprehensive information from a target system. This includes data such as databases, table names, system software, and hardware used by third-party plugins. By using these techniques, Accorian enables users to make informed decisions based on accurate and comprehensive data.
2. Vulnerability Evaluation
We evaluate security flaws in the target network by readily recognizing the data acquired in the first stage. This allows our penetration testers to perform attacks utilizing the system’s recognized entry points.
3. Practical Exploitation
Starting an assault on the target system is the most crucial phase, requiring specialized expertise and procedures. Our expert penetration testers start an attack on a system using their skills.
4. Analysis of Results and Production of Reports
After conducting penetration testing, we compile comprehensive reports for remedial measures. In these reports, all detected vulnerabilities and proposed remediation procedures are detailed. The format of vulnerability reports is modified (XML, HTML, Microsoft Word, PDF) to meet the demands of your company.
In addition to penetration testing, Accorian can also recommend solutions or compensatory controls for identified vulnerabilities. Moreover, we can conduct penetration testing and map vulnerabilities to various compliance criteria to aid in prioritizing solutions. By doing so, we help customers understand the overall security posture of the environment.