Compliance-Based Penetration Testing is Insufficient

By  //  February 27, 2023

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on LinkedIn Share on Delicious Digg This Stumble This

The top five vulnerabilities have remained consistent over the previous five years, as documented in the State of Pentesting 2022 Report. That is to say, pentesting for compliance isn’t enough in today’s agile software development life cycle (SDLC).

Nearly two-thirds of businesses, according to the stats compiled by the industry, adopt agile development approaches. In order to avoid releasing vulnerable code alongside new features or products, it is prudent to adopt an agile testing strategy.

Now that we know the need for a strong security program, let’s examine a sample schedule for achieving this goal. This will involve not just the usual battery of tests for compliance, but also red teaming and other, more streamlined forms of testing.

Even a Compliance-Driven Pentesting Program Has Its Limits

While penetration services are a necessary first step in meeting compliance requirements, such as SOC 2, PCI, and many other standards, it is not sufficient on their own. In order to better integrate security testing into the continuous software development lifecycle, businesses now need to take a more focused approach.

To begin, businesses that adopt an agile SDLC tend to roll out many, incremental updates to their products, each of which presents a potential security hole. Further, in the ever-changing realm of cybersecurity, fresh attacks like Log4J may cause havoc in otherwise safe settings. Because of this, businesses should think about implementing iterative pentesting programs.

Using a PtaaS platform for your pentest program also has the following advantages:

  • education in a methodical manner
  • free retesting after remediation
  • increasing cooperation between software developers and specialists in the security industry

All right, let’s go into each of these advantages.

A company may get the most out of its pentest program if it learns something from each test and uses that information to systematically increase security and reduce the likelihood of future vulnerabilities.

To implement a new feature, for instance, developers may have to learn new skills, but in doing so they may unwittingly bring the same kind of vulnerability to the codebase. By looking at past pentest data, businesses may see that this is a recurring issue and take preventative measures by altering the procedure most responsible for exposing the vulnerability.

Developers may use the free retest to double-check that a vulnerability has been correctly patched, and it also gives them a chance to see their work through the eyes of a security expert. Developers shouldn’t be expected to be experts in pentesting. Instead, if pentesters and developers have stronger lines of communication, development teams will be better equipped to identify the causes of security flaws and, perhaps, prevent them in future projects.

As a final benefit, a pentest program developed on a PtaaS platform improves remediation efficiency by fixing several vulnerabilities at once. Together, better communication and retesting release this last hidden value. Pentesters will keep in close contact with your team so that you can start fixing the vulnerability as soon as it is detected.

There is no need to hold off till the pentest is complete. In addition to the benefits already mentioned, this may help teach engineers about security best practices while also boosting the safety of the firm.