Shedding Some Light on CREST Penetration Testing
Unlike in the past, various organizations have embraced pen testing to ensure the security of their systems. The process helps to identify and take the necessary precautions to protect their infrastructure, users, and applications. Some firms have internal pen testers while others hire when they need the services. Since the pen testers have access to some of the most critical infrastructure and information about the company, the management should conduct a thorough background check before choosing a service provider.
Some firms have a hard time when choosing an external company due to different pricing offered by various companies specialising in security testing. Pen test providers differ in terms of aspects such as the proprietary methodologies, risk management practices, and regulatory compliance. Different firms may require a different 3rd party pen test providers depending on the nature of their environment that they operate in. Failure to acquire the services of professional pen testers could help prevent data breaches in the future (by identifying them ahead of time with a pen test).
Trusted pen testers are certified to do the work after evaluation to ensure that they adhere to the set industry standards. One of the bodies that are known for providing organizations with reliable pen testers is called CREST (Council of Registered Security Testers). The certification by CREST is given after passing a demanding assessment. The organization is based in the UK and focuses on improving the standards of services in the industry through offering regular guidance on acceptable standards, methodologies, and recommendations for proper pen testing.
Reasons for Acquiring Penetration Testing Services
Some businesses are more prone to cybersecurity attacks than others. If the risk is high, it is recommendable for an organization to seek the services of professional pen test providers to guarantee the safety of their data and infrastructure. Through the analysis of the organization’s systems, a pen tester identifies the susceptibility of its systems and gives recommendations on safety measures. After the professionals have identified the weaknesses of the systems, they replicate real attacks and later develop some strategies for early detection, response, and defense mechanisms for advanced persistent threats.
Before commencing the test, the pen testers are required to obtain permission from the owners of the system. According to some experts, the process of testing the systems enables the IT managers to identify any vulnerabilities of the system and seeking the most appropriate solutions for different situations. The testing involves taking full control of the computers in the organization’s network to evaluate the threats of hacking into the organization’s systems and providing a comprehensive report of the test.
Who Are CREST?
The organization is classified as a non-profit and specializes in certification of professionals in areas such as penetration testing, cybersecurity response, and intelligence services. The certification is recognized even by international bodies. The members of CREST undertake exams to assess their knowledge and abilities and this has helped them in their career development goals. The body has been in operation for the last twelve years. The members are informed of the latest cyber threats and solutions to meet the changing needs of the clients. The members of the body which include individuals and organizations are competitive in the industry as CREST is known to have appropriate policies and procedures for pen testing.
The members undergo three phases which include vulnerability assessor where one is required to have practiced for 1800 hours, the penetration tester should practice for 6,000 hours and with a minimum of two years of experience while the certified member is required to have practiced for 10,000 hours and having have worked for at least five years. CREST is a recipient of awards from the SC Magazine as one of the best professional certification bodies in the world. The organization partners with others who provide training to the members on the latest trends in the industry.
The examinations offered by CREST to its members are provided by Pearson Vue. CREST has members in many parts of the world such as the United Kingdom, Europe, Asia, Africa, and the United States. The exam booking process is easy as a candidate is only required to fill an online form. To ensure that the candidates retain and advance their skills, CREST re-examines them regularly. Some of the questions in the exams constitute of multiple choices while others require the candidates to write their responses.