web application penetration testing

Where Can Penetration Testers Go Wrong?

Meticulously planned penetration tests can sometimes fail due to certain mistakes committed by ethical hackers. Read on to know some of those mistakes.

Meetings between security professionals regarding hacks and exploits is no longer a very rare event, thanks to the cyber crimes reported in the past few years. The threats posed by hackers today have put the confidential data of several companies at risk. Not only can these hackers make a fortune by selling trade secrets, but can also create a total chaos by misusing classified information the way they want. An example that would suffice to explain is the hacking of a traffic system. Once the traffic control goes into the wrong hands, you can’t even imagine the number road accidents that can happen, not to mention the illegal activities one carry out taking advantage of the situation.

Considering how severe the damage can be if websites and web applications are hacked, companies deploying these have adopted web penetration testing as one of their regular practices. It basically involves internally simulated attacks on a web application, conducted by penetration testers or ethical hackers as they are often referred to.
Penetration testers, despite coming up with a meticulous plan for protecting a website or web application, tend to make certain mistakes during the testing process which can not only result in a wastage of time and money for the company, but can also compromise the security of the concerned application or website. Some of those mistakes have been explained below:

Using Plain Text for Passwords:
Instances where usage of plain text passwords does not give intriguing results during web application penetration testing are very rare. Some ethical hackers still use such passwords thus risking the security of confidential information. The same mistake is likely to be committed by developers and database administrators as well.

Using Vulnerable Machines:
Needless to say, any software-oriented procedure as serious as penetration testing requires secure machines. Some penetration testers, however, make use of obsolete machines that are known to have vulnerabilities for a long time. Regardless of whether these testers are restricted from using new and secure machines due to budget limitations or for any other reason, use of vulnerable machines for testing web applications is a big mistake.

Read also : Penetration Testing and its Security Benefits

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