By now, you should know why your organization needs to conduct a penetration test (if not, read why here). But have you considered how often your organization needs to conduct a pen test? With data breaches on the rise and the ever-changing methods criminals are using to conduct cyber-attacks, having regularly scheduled penetration testing is necessary.
For security professionals, it can be difficult to go to the decision-makers in a company and demand that a certain amount of money is spent on penetration testing. Rather, there must be justification for the expense, and the expenditure needs to ultimately contribute to the company’s profitability. If the decision-makers don’t understand the impact pen testing can have, they will never agree to the expense.
However, ROI from services like these is not always clear.
In order to justify the need for penetration testing, security professionals must qualify and quantify the “what” and the “why” of the service. This article will explore the potential returns an organization can expect from a penetration test.
A penetration test, or a “pen test,” involves a variety of both manual and automated techniques that simulate a cyberattack on an organization’s data and security.
To prioritize a holistic approach to cyber defense, organizations need to understand the environment under protection, the anomalies affecting the security of the system and—most importantly—the plan for remediation.
When reported and carried out properly, penetration tests can identify an organization’s security weaknesses and avenues of attack. With this knowledge, organizations can uncover the information and support that’s required to mitigate or remove those vulnerabilities.
Once your organization receives the test results, it’s time to prioritize your remediation efforts based on the most critical items. These items will be the most obvious points that malicious attackers will attempt to use to exploit your systems.
As you begin to measure your resources and develop your timeframe for remediation, there are several core elements you must keep in mind.