When we make a checklist of all the risks that may cause turbulence to our business, we often forget the damage that can be caused by a cyber-attack! Not just that, most companies even ignore the fact that it is a constant investment too – leading to them not improving their security processes each year. The common problem that most companies have is to understand the risks that may be present. How do you do that? With a  vulnerability assessment  of your business!
A test of this kind would show the kind of weaknesses that exist in your company and how they can be exploited. These weaknesses could be because of ignorance, mistakes or just plain lack of attention.
To understand if the internet security is acceptable or stable for usage, a malicious attack is usually self generated or simulated. This is called penetration testing. Either of these methods can be used on a wired or wireless network which the program to penetrate could even be a mobile application. Of course both these testing processes would require a meaningful investment and here is why –
- Understanding the errors in programming that maybe a possible risk towards cyber attacks.
- Implementing these standards would secure your IT networks from attacks both internally and externally.
- Create and implement a methodical approach towards risk management in the company.
- Keep your entire business logic away from IT networks
- Indentifying opportunities for ROI on IT security investments
- Keep your business away from financial or reputational downfalls.
Why would your business be vulnerable?
Wrong programming practices would the first and sole reason and the second reason would be configurations errors of these programming practices. If you have your routers, switches or servers that are not configured right or have gaps in security – it would be extremely for a break into your internal system.
How can a vulnerability assessment help?
With a vulnerability assessment, you would be using a technical approach to find the gaps that lie in your network or software security system. This is completely a process of repeated searches for errors. Upon a single process, you would be able to see the vulnerabilities and the severity level for each of the problems. How would you explore and exploit a vulnerability in your system though?
Penetration testing to assess the damage
Penetration testing  would help you go deeper into the vulnerabilities that were highlighted. You would be sure of the vulnerability and know what damage can be caused to your application or network. Do keep in mind though that this process is very intrusive and can cause a lot of damage to your systems – hence you need to be very cautious and plan it out perfectly.
How do you choose between both?
The answer to this question is quite simple – you need both. You need to analyse the risks that are present first and then figure out the level of damage that can be done with keep such risks at hand. They both go hand in hand towards a more secure system and as per ISO 27001 you need to prevent the exploitations of any technical vulnerabilities that may lie on your system. Simply put, the need of the hour is to have both techniques on your system to ensure there are no gaps.