In order to
assess the security of an information system, a very pragmatic approach
consists of conducting a cyberattack in the most realistic possible way. Can a
security auditor really put itself in the shoes of the “bad guy”? Is it
possible not to bias the tests by not providing information beforehand?
Yes, it is
actually possible with a “100% Black Box” security audit. In this situation,
the pentester starts the audit having only the name of the company as
information. Up to him to discover the scope exposed to attacks and then to
carry out attacks trying to maximise the impact of the tests within the time
that was given.
benefits for the company that order this type of black box audit are:
service attacks (or DoS attacks) are regularly making headlines, as
consequences can be important. These attacks aim to make a server, a network
infrastructure or an application… unavailable.
How to protect yourself? You can choose to test your robustness to denial of service attacks as part of a penetration testing.
When we talk about computer attacks, we often think of an activist or a criminal sitting in front of his screen on the other side of the world… while half of the attacks involve internal actors, according to the Insider Threat Report 2018. In fact, 58% of respondents confirmed that they had suffered a cyberattack related to the internal threat. Protecting yourself from the inside against these attacks is therefore just as important as defending yourself from the outside.
During an internal security audit, penetration tests are conducting from inside the company or sometimes through a VPN. Most of the time, pentesters go to the company’s buildings, bring their equipment and put themselves in the shoes of an internal attacker.
We have been conducting social engineering attacks for around 3 years (legal attacks for clients, it is our job, no worry 😉 ). During these three years, our pentesters (security experts) tried various techniques, scenarios and pretexts. We have learned lessons from our experience, and our clients shared with us what they learned too. We are sharing them now with you.
1/ Social engineering in a nutshell
starting, let’s remember what social engineering is: