Know your unknowns to assess, quantify the infrastructure  security vulnerabilities and prepare a risk mitigation approach meant to reduce attack surface.

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What is Network Penetration Testing?

A simulated attack exercise aimed at finding weaknesses in a company’s infrastructure. This exercise is aimed at internal (corporate, production environments) and/or external (internet facing) networks.


Cyphere’s consultant-led Network Penetration Testing to identify software and network security vulnerabilities and explain in relation to the underlying asset’s risk profile. Generally, two types of network penetration testing is carried out, divided into external (internet facing assets) and internal (inside networks of an organisation) assessments. With cloud computing, any assets within the private cloud accessible to staff are considered as an internal network.

Penetration Testing

Benefits of Network Penetration Testing

Know your unknowns with in-depth assessments

Common Security Vulnerabilities

Secure hardening vulnerabilities across networking, security, telecommunications & other internal equipment, OS and endpoint vulnerabilities.
Effective patch management plays critical role in closing window of opportunity for attackers, thats between the vulnerability disclosure and patch release.
Domain controllers design and configuration issues, group policy security review including audit policy, account lockout policy, user rights and security settings.

Logging and monitoring controls are reviewed to identify flaws in event collection, analysis and threat identification.

Network segregation checks with attempts to subvert restrictions in place.
We check against the configuration and use of encryption methods used for data at rest and transit.This includes checks against internal root certificate authority configuration and trust established with systems and devices under the domain.
Authentication vulnerabilities are one of the most critical and important attack vectors. This area includes multiple test cases i.e. transmission channels, nature of input, insecure configurations, weak credentials & bypass attempts.
Our internal network penetration test methodology involves password cracking and statistical analysis to show how passwords affect the general health of security of the domain.
Searches are performed on local and network shares for interesting files, contents that would contain credentials and/or any sensitive information.
Network equipment such as switch, routers, peripherals such as printers, imaging and scanning devices, are checked against security vulnerabilities and secure hardening weaknesses.

Network Penetration Testing Services

Our security assessment services cover a broad spectrum of domains such as cloud, wireless, mobile, stealth campaigns, security devices (firewalls, VPNs, WAF, IDS/IPS), phishing, IoT, external & internal networks and solutions.

Internal Penetration Test

A consultant led exercise performed on the internal (or corporate environments) network. This starts with an unauthenticated attacker test case aimed to identify, exploit and infiltrate across the entire network. 


External Penetration Test

This exercise is aimed at internet facing assets of your organisation, performed remotely from our labs. External network penetration testing is performed with zero privileges, that is same level access as an internet based user. 


Firewall Review

Our firewall security assessment service is aimed at checks around configuration and traffic/rulebase.
The device in scope could be any of the perimeter firewalls, cloud based NSGs, small business based all in one firewall, switch or wireless devices.



Secure Hardening Reviews

A secure hardening review ensures no weaknesses are introduced in the security posture of your company keeping exposed services with minimal attack surface.
Default passwords, OS configuration, services, anti-malware controls are assessed in this review.


Active Directory Security Review

Active Directory security is one of the strong pillars against data breaches.
Domain controllers are the heartbeat of your network. Remote compromises could directly impact your business operations, including but not limited to data breach, brand position loss or other reputational and/or legal implications.

Wireless Security Assessment

We simulate various threat scenarios that an attacker may use against your wireless network that could lead to an organisation wide breach.
Assessment test cases include WiFi authentication, encryption, deauth attacks, segregation, access point configuration, signal leakage issues.

IT Health Check

Whether you are a council, NHS trust or a corporate business assessing cyber security first time, Cyphere offers organisation-wide cyber health checks to help you validate your technical security controls across the perimeter firewall, wireless, build reviews, internal and external environments. 

Device Security Reviews

Whether it is your device operator, manufacturer or service provider, secure device configuration is an important element in ensuring the security of components responsible for data transport. 
Data loss or network intrusions are directly linked to insecure devices within a corporate network.

Network Segregation Reviews

Network segregation process ensures restrictions are in place to avoid unnecessary exposure of systems within particular networks.
Test cases involving segregation checks at user, network, environment level ensure defence in depth approach is followed at all times.

Frequently Asked Questions about Network Penetration Testing

An external network pen test is aimed at internet exposed devices and/or systems only simulating a threat actor on the internet (unauthenticated). Threat actors vary in attack vectors aimed at people, processes and technology, therefore, internal network security is assessed differently with both unauthenticated and authenticated approaches.
At network level, internal and external network penetration tests are the main attack surfaces. At device and systems level, various security reviews can be conducted to assess the risk exposure.
A thorough internal network penetration test measures the information security culture at ground level. This includes nature, type and strength of passwords in use, security settings of domain, encryption, authentication, authorisation, patch management and network devices hardening.
Based on network architecture, onsite or offsite suggestion is made accordingly. For instance, where multiple physical sites and network segregations are a challenge remotely, onsite assessment is preferred. With post covid19 measures, we utilise a number of methods (SSL VPN, VM deployment or shipping hardware to client site) to carry out remote penetration testing of internal networks.
Communication plays an important role during security assessments. We always prompt customers to inform us about fragile components during project initiation meetings. With customer business operations as the highest priority, our consultants follow mix of consulting and technical approach to avoid every chance of risk of disruption (such as blind scanning, automated approaches, other low level Layer 2 activities). Low level attacks, Denial of Service attacks are explicitly deemed out of scope for all assessments.
Network Pen test remediation is sometimes a complex process due to the specialist security skill-set needed for IT teams. As part of our aftercare support, we provide help in preparing remediation plan to all our customers. Optionally, we provide remediation consultancy to ensure all agreed findings are mitigated in line with best network security practices.

A secure network provides secure environment

Network Penetration Testing Methodology

In order to perform an network pen test, it is important to understand the context of assets in scope for the engagement. Our proven approach to network security assessments is based on more than a decade of experience, industry practices and effective ways to exceed customer expectations. 

Cyphere’s pentesting engagement lifecycle methodology is broken down into five phases as demonstrated in the penetration testing methodology diagram. 

  1. Initial Scoping & Objectives Agreement
  2. Reconnaissance
  3. Scanning
  4. Exploitation
  5. Reporting 
  6. Remediation (Optional remediation consultancy to help mitigate risks identified during penetration testing)
Penetration Testing Lifecycle

Our approach to network pen testing

Customer Business Insight

The very first step remains our quest to gain insight into drivers, business, pain points and relevant nuances. As part of this process, we understand the assets that are part of the scope.

Services Proposal

It is important to gain grips with the reality, therefore, we always stress on walkthroughs or technical documentation of the assets. After asset walkthroughs, a tailored proposal is designed to meet your business’ specific requirements.

Execution and Delivery

Cyphere’s approach to all work involves excellent communication before and during the execution phase. Customer communication medium and frequency are mutually agreed, and relevant parties are kept updated throughout the engagement duration.

Data Analysis & Reporting

Execution phase is followed by data analysis and reporting phase. Cyphere performs analysis on the testing output, evaluates the risk impact and likelihood of exploitation in realistic scenarios before providing action plans to remediate the identified risks. All our reports address business as well as the technical audience with supporting raw data, including mitigation measures at strategic and tactical levels

Debrief & Support

As part of our engagement process, customers schedule a free of charge debrief with management and technical teams. This session involves remediation plan, assessment QA to ensure that customer contacts are up to date in the language they understand.

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