Solutions Review: Four Ways to Elevate Your Penetration Testing Program

On June 24, 2022, NetSPI Managing Director Nabil Hannan published an article in Solutions Review called Four Ways to Elevate Your Penetration Testing Program. Read the preview below or view it online.


Let’s set the scene. For years, organizations have undergone compliance-based penetration testing (pentesting), meaning they only audit their systems for security vulnerabilities when mandated to do so by regulatory bodies. However, this “check-the-box” mindset that’s centered around point-in-time testing is leaving organizations at risk for potential exploitation.

From August-October 2021 alone, a total of 7,064 new Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) numbers were registered – all of which could go undetected if a business does not have an established proactive security posture.

With malicious actors continuously evolving and maturing their attack techniques, organizations must leave this outdated mindset behind and take the necessary steps to develop a comprehensive, always-on penetration testing program. Here’s a look at how this can be accomplished.

Adopt an ‘as-a-Service’ Model

Traditional pentesting programs operate under a guiding principle: organizations only need to test their assets a few times a year to protect their business from potential vulnerabilities properly. During this engagement, a pentester performs an assessment over a specified period and then provides a static report outlining all of the found vulnerabilities. While once deemed the status quo, there are many areas for inefficiencies in this traditional model.

With threats increasing, organizations must take a proactive approach to their security posture. Technology-enabled as-a-Service models overhaul traditional pentesting programs by creating always-on visibility into corporate systems. For an as-a-Service model to succeed, the engagement should allow organizations to view their testing results in real-time, orchestrate faster remediation, and perform always-on continuous testing.

This hyperfocus on transparency from both parties will drive clear communication, with the pentesters available to address any questions or concerns in real-time – instead of just providing an inactionable static report. Additionally, it allows teams to truly understand the vulnerabilities within their systems so they can begin remediation before the end of the pentesting engagement.

Lastly, when working in an as-a-Service model, pentesters can help organizations become more efficient with their security processes, as they work as an extension of the internal team and can lend their industry expertise to help strengthen their clients’ security posture.

Read the full article online here.

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