As we near closer to 2022, we have seen an unprecedented year of cyberattacks. As per Gov.UK, 39% of businesses report having cyber security breaches or attacks in the last 12 months.
This statistic does not only involve larger companies but small to medium-sized enterprises (SME’s) are also often targeted by hackers. With an attack on an SME happening every 19 seconds in the UK, and with an average cost of a data breach costing around £16.1K, consistently testing the effectiveness of your company’s security is of paramount importance.
GDPR’s introduction in 2018 meant that businesses were now being held liable if they were not adhering to the GDPR’s strict data protection laws. Companies that are found to be noncompliant with GDPR, will be fined about £17.5 million, or 4% of their global annual turnover, whichever number is greater.
With data breaches and non-compliance with GDPR involving such a financial burden, and a potential loss of business through negative reputation, businesses really can’t afford to not have up-to-date cybersecurity.
But what roles do penetration testing and ethical hacking have in this environment?
What is Penetration Testing?
Penetration testing, which can also be called pen testing or ethical hacking, involves an authorised attempt to gain unauthorised access to a computer system, application, or data. This can be performed manually or be automated with software applications. Often a penetration test will involve replicating strategies that are utilised by hackers. This helps to identify security vulnerabilities that can then be resolved before a malicious attacker has the opportunity to exploit them.
What Is An Ethical Hacker?
As opposed to their illegal ‘Black-Hats’ counterpart, ethical hackers are often referred to as ‘White-Hats’, and more often than not are security experts who perform the assessment. The vital work that these ethical hackers do helps companies improve their security, as it points out any potential places where they could be exploited.
Using their expert knowledge, ethical hackers attempt to secure and improve the technology of organisations through penetration testing. This in turn provides an essential service to those organisations who seek to find vulnerabilities that can lead to a security breach.
An ethical hacker reports the identified vulnerabilities to the organisation. In many cases, with the organisation’s consent, the ethical hacker performs a re-test to ensure the vulnerabilities are fully resolved.
How Can Fitzrovia IT Help?
Penetration Testing services from Fitzrovia IT will uncover any potential security flaws in your network. We conduct internal/external infrastructure, Wi-Fi, API, and Web Application tests to identify vulnerabilities. Regular tests will safeguard your business from the numerous financial and reputational ramifications that you could face in the event of a cyber-attack.
Using both automated and manual technologies, every penetrations test we carry out will identify and exploit issues that could potentially compromise network assets. This gives you a complete understanding of your network weaknesses as well as a priorities action list for dealing with them.
With concern mounting for organisations of all sizes, Fitzrovia IT advises that businesses conduct regular penetration tests. Security flaws exist in software, hardware, and configurations irrespective of the size of the organisation. One of our core beliefs is that we believe in prevention over intervention, so make sure you are best prepared to not fall foul of a breach or fine.