How can you tell if you’re at risk for becoming the victim of a cyber-crime? Companies of all sizes are being targeted by hackers from across the globe at all times. In fact, you only need to skim the latest headlines to see that even high-profile companies with sophisticated IT infrastructures aren’t immune to the attacks of these cyber criminals. One of the scariest facts about cyber criminals is that they don’t discriminate against any industry.
Your Business A Target For Hackers
With so much cyber-crime that takes place daily, very few get reported. Small businesses are routinely attacked by hackers who guess passwords or send scam emails to employees in order to gain access to a network. How can you tell if your business is at risk? The plain truth is that it already is. One detail that is often overlooked is the fact that employees account for a large portion of all network vulnerabilities.
Many criminals use social engineering in the form of phishing emails that offer prizes, ask for charity or falsify in-office information requests. Knowing that you are at risk is only half the battle. The next important step is identifying your business’s weak points quickly and accurately.
Identifying Your Weakness Is Key
How can you know where your vulnerabilities are unless you’ve been attacked? The unfortunate reality is that most IT security officers don’t realize the flaws in their security plans until an attack has already taken place. Sometimes these breaches are never even detected until the threat actors have already left the scene of the crime.
The result of these attacks can range from a variety of consequences like lost money, bad press and legal ramifications that could take years to resolve. What if there was a way to see what the bad guys would do if they attacked your network before they actually get a chance to do so? Businesses can now take advantage of a form of white-hat hacking when they utilize a service called pentesting.
It is performed by skilled, highly experienced experts that essentially launch a sophisticated assault against a business’s digital assets for the sake of performing a real-time stress test. These penetration tests are highly controlled attacks coordinated with the IT team or business in order to minimize down-time or any service disruptions.
The experts will work hard to exploit weak points, gain entry to a network and compromise sensitive data. The amazing thing about penetration testing is that it doesn’t limit its testing to computers and servers. A firm that offers penetration testing will actually target employees to uncover improper network security practices in order for these issues to be addressed by a business.
What Comes Next?
The results of a penetration test can help a business create a solid plan for going forward with tools that keep a network safe. The full report will provide a blueprint of where and how breaches occurred. The IT team of a business will get to see exactly how a network performs in the face of an attack.
That IT team will then have the ability to patch up network holes and add security protocols on the technical end. In addition, this allows a company to identify any security best practices that are lacking in employee training.
All businesses in today’s technology driven society are at risk for a cyber-attack. By taking the time to learn and thoroughly investigate vulnerabilities, the security of your business as well as the safety of your employees and clients will be that much safer. :)