Since the pandemic has started, the FBI has reported a 300% increase in reported cybercrimes. A large percentage of the victims of cybercrimes are ill-prepared businesses. Many cyberattacks are crippling for businesses and can lead to permanent closures. The average cost of a data breach for small to medium sized businesses is over $3.9 million. It’s vital for businesses to assess and resolve any security loopholes within their business to prevent cyberattacks. One of the best methods to do this is to have penetration testing done for your business. In a penetration test, also known as a pen test, professional cybersecurity experts will try to hack into your business and find all the vulnerabilities your business has. This will help illuminate all the security gaps in your business and prevent hackers from gaining access to business data.

Why should you have an independent third party assess your security?

Pen tests are done by independent third parties to assess all the internal and external security risks in a business. It’s very key that a third party does the pen test for your business because they don’t have any incentives to overlook security gaps. Additionally, when a third party does a pen test for your business, this can be used to meet compliance and regulatory requirements depending on the industries a business operates in.

When a third party does a pen test, they will imitate a hacker and use all the resources at their disposal to overcome your cybersecurity. You will be able to see how a hacker would approach breaching your security and address all the avenues where your security can be compromised. This is basically an in-depth audit of your business’ current security infrastructure.

What happens after?

Review results: After the pen test is complete, you’ll be given a report with a summary of the findings. Pen tests are very comprehensive and take a look at many security measures, so there’s going to be a list of security issues to fix. Areas of your business like networks, hardware, software, etc. will be tested and the tester will give your recommendations on how to improve your security.

Planning: When the findings are presented to you, the tester will help you plan on how to fix any vulnerabilities. This is crucial because without planning, the security vulnerabilities won’t be addressed. In the planning stage, you can discuss with your tester which vulnerabilities should be addressed first and in what time frame. This will allow you to prioritize the most pressing security needs and ensure your business’ safety.

Explore retesting at a later date: After the conclusion of the pen test, you can discuss further testing at a later date. Depending on the findings of the pen tests, retests can be strongly recommended to ensure your security vulnerabilities were addressed. Many businesses have pen tests done occasionally to ensure their security measures are up to par and any changes in the business since then have not created new security vulnerabilities.

To learn more about pen tests and how your business can benefit from having them, take a free assessment here.