What Are the Different Types of Security Testing?

According to a CNBC News report, Accenture experts share that security attacks are mainly aimed at small businesses. They attribute the reason for this to poorly secured apps and software. The attack is brutal enough to force businesses to halt their operations due to monetary losses. Figuratively speaking, the cost of security breaches across all businesses is estimated roughly at $5.2 trillion globally.

However, the problem is not restricted to small players only. Businesses of all sizes are under threat of some kind and severity level. Verizon reports espionage and money-siphoning (86% and 10%) were the two primary motivations behind cyber-attacks.  Hence, taking security lightly can be a big mistake. So, why not rectify the situation by employing professional security testing services?

If the idea appeals to you, know the top 7 security testing procedures explained in this post. You might need a few or all of these tests done.

1.    Vulnerability Scanning

Detection of all vulnerable points in an automated software’s architecture is termed vulnerability scanning. The scan can be used to pinpoint the system’s inability to shield itself from:

·         SQL and command injections

·         Cross-site scripting

·         Attack on server configuration, etc.

The downside of this scan is that it mimics an attack. As a result, a robust and well-protected system may crash as a safety response to a vulnerability scan mistaken as an invasion attempt.

2.    Penetration testing

This testing is an ethical hacking way of checking the application’s vulnerability. A hypothetical attack is launched to check the pregnable points of the system.

Penetration testing is of two types. The first type is application penetration testing that encompasses checking of technical vulnerabilities. The second type is infrastructure penetration testing that involves firewalls, servers, and other hardware examinations.

Main steps involved in penetration testing are:

·         Establish the scope for testing

·         Assess the system’s features and functionalities

·         Examination of all ports

·         Running scan for pinpointing vulnerable ports or nodes

·         Exploit those weak points to understand the extent of a system breach

·         Report findings and make suggestions to improve, if any.

3.    Security Auditing

It involves combing through the entire code line by line. The primary goals and actions that constitute security audit are:

·         Checking bugs of any kind in the code

·         Periodic technical reviewing of application or system behavior

·         Reporting configurations, infrastructural make-up, and technologies updation status, etc.

The security auditor takes on the responsibility of ascertaining the robustness of the application or system against any security breach attempts. Data security is at the core of the security audit, among other virtues crucial to a flawless system functioning.

4.    Risk assessment

Risk assessment encompasses the analysis of all possible security risks faced by a system or application. The security checking expert performs functions like:

·         Dividing risks as low, medium, and high and classifying the threats detected under these categories

·         Reporting how these risks can cause disruptions of various kinds

·         Suggesting controls to mitigate or eliminate the risk completely

·         Giving guidelines on applying risk management measures according to industrial norms.

5.    Ethical hacking

Ethical hacking means identifying the vulnerabilities and exploiting those to find the possibilities of unauthorized intervention. The ethical hacker at security testing services bypasses the system security solutions to understand their pain points.

The process involves:

·       Checking and reporting of vulnerabilities that may lead to a data breach

·       Applying remedial measures and re-testing their efficiency

·       Gaining unauthorized access to restricted or sensitive system points and assessing the ease of access

Problems identified by ethical hackers include:

·       Security configuration issues

·       Sensitive data exposure limit

·       Broken authentication

·       Injection attack vulnerabilities

·       Using components with identified vulnerabilities

Password hacking is the most common check done by ethical hackers. The strength of the password to achieve depends upon the cruciality of data or information it protects.

6.   Security Posture Assessment

Posture in cybersecurity means collective security status of an IT-empowered system’s ecosystem. The ecosystem here means internal components like software, hardware, suites, security solutions, etc. How these behave in relation to or response to external factors such as networks, vendors, information systems, etc., comprise the complete posture.

In posture assessment, the security testing services critically evaluate resources and the change mechanism that come into play in a virus attack.

The process involves:

·         Determining the resource’s importance and stored information’s value

·         Identify and prioritize resources based on their role in the IT system

·         Tabulate types of cyber security threats the resources may face

·         Identify vulnerable spots most likely to get attacked

·         Analyze continually the possibility of an attack

·         Identify and prioritize risks and corresponding solutions applied to mitigate these

·         Report findings and results of corrective actions taken, explaining the scope of further improvement.

Wrapping up,

Security testing services employ these tests in an automated manner by integrating these with SDLC. Completing security checks right at the corresponding development stage helps developers avoid starting from the scratch. Besides, stage-wise checking ensures that the application, software, or IT system is checked point-to-point. None of the security aspect, whether trivial or crucial, misses the developers’ radar.