The Evolution of Penetration Testing: 2021 and Beyond
Published On: March 3, 2021
When it comes to securing your cyber programs, acknowledging your own vulnerabilities is as crucial as staying up to date with current solutions and tools. It is important to evaluate your security maturity by understanding weaknesses and identifying security gaps in order to safeguard your assets.
What is Penetration Testing?
Penetration testing, also known as pen testing, is the process of evaluating your program for vulnerabilities to threats. The different types of penetration tests include network services, applications, client side, wireless, and social engineering, among others. A penetration test can be performed externally or internally to simulate different types of attacks. Depending on the desired outcomes of each test, a tester may have prior knowledge regarding the environment and systems they’re attempting to breach. Identifying vulnerabilities through these simulated attacks helps organizations gather information about the different ways bad actors gain unauthorized access to their environments or sensitive information. Data breaches are not only costly to your business, but it may also result in a loss of critical data, damaged brand reputation, and operational disruptions or outages.
Instead of waiting for an attacker to identify a loophole in your organization, penetration testing services allow you to pinpoint those weaknesses and handle them proactively. Engaging in regular penetration test activities considerably improves your security posture, and increases your program’s ability to protect your organization’s sensitive information.
Why is Penetration Testing Growing in Importance in 2021?
2020 and the expanded remote workforces introduced a heightened number of vulnerabilities and potential risks, resulting in an increased need for security testing, including penetration testing.
According to Cybersecurity Ventures, global cybercrime costs are expected to grow by 15% per year over the course of the next five years, reaching a staggering $10.5 trillion annually by 2025, a tremendous increase from $3 trillion in 2015.
A penetration test is a proactive answer to identifying the major areas of weakness inside your cybersecurity program, and works to prevent serious financial and reputational losses within your organization, it is more crucial than ever to perform regular penetration tests to identify weaknesses and ensure your program is functioning at its highest and most secure level.
Over the years, penetration testing has evolved to efficiently combat growing threats and risks. Last year and moving into 2021, the industry experienced a shift to remote workforces, sparking accelerated cloud adoption and in many cases expedited digital transformation. Many prominent challenges became evident including new gaps in protection for cloud environments.
This paradigm shift presents a wider cybersecurity perimeter that organizations must manage entirely with their security testing efforts. Every device and unit of the business that accesses data must be tested for vulnerabilities and safeguarded against attackers and breaches. While traditional risks like phishing will still be prevalent, organizations will face new attacks directed at remote work set-ups, as well as smart IoT devices, from home lighting to cameras and security. Remote working will continue well into 2021 and probably beyond, forcing security functions to move further away from the traditional perimeter security approach and acknowledge that the end user is effectively the new boundary.
Within this new environment, by conducting regular penetration tests, you can significantly reduce this costly risk for your business and protect your organization's sensitive information, reputation, and clients.
K logix works with security leaders to ensure they gain support from the business and establish a security culture within their organizations. We help CISOs and security leaders gain justification, business knowledge, and technical aptitude to address shifting priorities.
Our in-house consultants spend time understanding your organization’s business direction and vision, your unique organizational structure, and key information security risks to determine the appropriate Security Test for your needs. Our Security Testing Services include:
Application and Product Penetration Testing Web Application and Web Services API Product and Native Applications Mobile Application