Industry Insights

What Businesses Should Know About Ethical Hacking

The word “hacker” has negative connotations. You hear that word, and you think stolen data, lost money, lawsuits, and endless trouble. And it’s true: You do not want your business to get hacked.

Unless you arrange for it to happen.

Ethical hacking is a process by which a business hires an individual or company to act as a hacker would. An ethical hacker, or “white hat,” discovers system vulnerabilities that could be exploited by someone with ill intent. Then your business can strengthen these weak points before suffering negative consequences.

How to begin the process

Businesses should be cautious during the hiring process. Don’t give anyone carte blanche. Only select a certified white hat who will stay within the boundaries of the project. Your business should know how the ethical hacker will assess your system’s security. And once the job is done, the ethical hacker should recommend next steps.

It’s a good idea to construct an agreement that outlines the scope and requires the ethical hacker not only to disclose discovered vulnerabilities and potential fixes but to ensure that sensitive data stays private.

If that seems like a tall order, providers of IT support in Denver, Business Network Consulting Systems, can help your business craft a strategy.

Typical vulnerabilities

While it’s up to your business to stipulate the type of work an ethical hacker will do, there are certain security issues that they commonly discover. For example, SQL injection attacks are a common way for malicious hackers to access sensitive data. Ethical hackers look for security gaps in application code that would allow bad actors to inject their own code.

Other typical vulnerabilities include poorly configured firewalls, inadequate security permissions, and weak or broken authentication processes.

Fixing the problems

Ethical hackers will report their findings to your company. Ordinarily, they will also include recommended methods for shoring up your security based on their investigation.

Ordinarily, ethical hackers do not, however, implement the security improvements that they recommend. It is the organization’s responsibility to do so. This is sometimes where businesses drop the ball.

It’s not enough that a business knows where it may be vulnerable; those gaps must be filled. Time is of the essence when it comes to fixing the identified problems. If an ethical hacker found vulnerabilities, malicious hackers will eventually do the same.

Work with your existing IT team or add strength to its ranks by consulting with BNC. Its experts have encountered nearly every security weakness and keep abreast of new tactics malicious hackers use.

Once isn’t enough

Knowing that these chinks in your network security exist can be unsettling. Naturally, you want to plug whatever holes your ethical hacker may uncover. But even after you’ve gone through the whole process, you cannot rest on your laurels.

That’s because malicious hackers don’t rest. They’re constantly seeking new ways to penetrate business systems. It can be difficult to determine how often your business should test its systems for vulnerabilities. BNC can guide you through the whole process from start to finish, as well as helping plan for the future.



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