Resources pertaining to key features of Adlumin’s Progressive Penetration Testing.

How Adlumin’s Progressive Penetration Testing Helped a Financial Institution Immediately Identify Vulnerabilities

Discover how Adlumin’s Security Operations Platform empowered this financial institution to take control of their security and compliance, uncover hidden cyber threats, and streamline data analysis and compliance workflows.

In this paper, you’ll learn how, using Penetration Testing, they successfully identified and remedied critical security gaps within minutes, providing actionable insights to safeguard against potential breaches.
Curious about the potential benefits of Penetration Testing for your financial institution? Download this paper today.

Penetration Testing for Enterprises FAQ

By: Brittany Demendi, Corporate Communications Manager

How and when did penetration testing begin?

The concept of penetration testing, commonly known as ‘pentesting’ or ‘ethical hacking,’ first started around the 1960s, when cybersecurity experts informed the government that its computer communications lines were not as secure as they thought. To further investigate, the government brought in what they called “Tiger Teams,” named after special military teams, according to Infosec Institute, to hack their own network. Most government systems failed fast, however, they learned two things: first, that they could be accessed, and second, penetration testing was a valuable technique to identify any weak points in networks, systems, hardware, and software that needed to be further developed, thought out, and studied.

Is penetration testing considered a “luxury” tactic?

If penetration testing has been around since the 1960s, why is it a relatively new practice organizations implement into their security plan? It is estimated, by Infosec Institute, that $6.4 billion is spent on security checks and tools each year, with penetration tools not even skimming that surface. It is also considered to be only about a decade old, formally established in 2009. In addition, it mainly comes down to the lack of proper resources.

Penetration can be expensive trying to source in-house. Yes, there are penetration testers out there, but when our country is hitting an all-time high of open cybersecurity jobs, it can be tough to find the right experts to facilitate a penetration test properly, effectively, and consistently.

What is the difference between pentesting and scanning for vulnerabilities?

Vulnerability scanning, and penetration testing are sometimes mistaken as the same type of service. One of the main issues many organizations have is whether they will utilize or purchase one when they really need both to have the best proactive protection. A vulnerability scan is a high-level automated test that looks for vulnerabilities. It is a more passive approach to vulnerability management.

As it is possible to take vulnerability scanning to the next level with Continuous Vulnerability Management, it is still essential to add penetration testing in the mix because they work hand-in-hand. Continuous Vulnerability Management is continuous, while penetration testing is customized with various deployment options. Both programs play a critical role in building a healthy cybersecurity plan.

Do I need pentesting in my cybersecurity strategy?

Penetration testing allows organizations to evaluate the overall security posture of their IT infrastructure. An organization may have a robust security plan and strategy in place in one area but could be lacking in another. A successful cyberattack can be detrimental to most organizations, which means, no organization should wait for a real-world attack before utilizing its offense. Penetration testing exposes holes within every security layer, allowing cybersecurity experts to proactively act on shortcomings before they become a liability. Testing is focused on finding out how cybercriminals can get in.

This technique should not be a one-and-done type of effort. It is most efficient if it is a part of an ongoing vigilance. It is best to look for every possible open door into a network rather than finding one way in and calling it a day. Whenever there are security patch updates, which is a part of vulnerability scanning and patching as a service, or new applications used by employees, unknown risks open the door for cybercriminals. The most proactive way to slam those doors shut is to uncover any new security weaknesses by working on the offensive side of the game.

In addition to proactive cybersecurity protection, here are a few more reasons penetration testing is becoming a non-negotiable aspect of security plans:

  • Checking the box of compliance standards: penetration testing allows organizations to maintain industry standards and compliance regulations.
  • Improve security posture: penetration testing helps prioritize and address vulnerabilities with actionable results.
  • Hunting real-world vulnerabilities: weak endpoints are exposed in an organization’s computer system.

How do I perform a penetration test?

Penetration testing involves identifying an exploit, designing an attack, and performing a simulation of that attack to determine the best strategies to overcome a digital adversary. The nature of the exploit will often determine the resources that will be required to mitigate the risk. It combines manual and active attempts by pen testers to hack networks alongside automated tools that scan 24×7 for vulnerabilities.

Together, this is thought to offer a broader security review and has since evolved into cybersecurity services. This approach allows organizations of all sizes that may not be able to expand their IT team internally to a wide array of penetration tools and services like a Progressive Penetration Testing Program with experts to manage them.

In general though, penetration testing can be offered affordably, all while providing the utmost security protection. Specifically, Progressive Penetration Testing simulates different vantage points to see if any critical data can be accessed. In addition, documentation is provided and explained for each vulnerability, evidence, impact, recommendation, and observed instance.

Sometimes your IT teams are too close to the network to carry out effective tests, so turning to external cybersecurity experts to carry out a progressive penetration program can be the best way to monitor from different angles. Penetration tests transform into results with actionable insights for the stakeholder and decision-makers. There becomes more of an emphasis on the weak points exposed, better preparing a defense, and strengthening the offense.

For more information on progressive penetration programs, visit Or, if you are ready to get started with a demo or free trial, contact a cybersecurity expert today.

Importance of Penetration Testing in Cybersecurity

By: Brittany Demendi, Corporate Communications Manager

What is Penetration Testing?

Penetration testing, also known as “pentesting” and commonly known as “ethical hacking,” is a technique used by professionals like Adlumin’s Managed Detection and Response (MDR) Team to shine a light on potential vulnerabilities. Pen testing involves identifying and testing these vulnerabilities within an organization’s network in a controlled environment. In our case, the MDR Team takes on the mindset of a cybercriminal and mimics the actions or strategies of an attack to evaluate where the weak points are. Penetration testing can also test compliance regulations to resolve any risks.

In a previous blog post, we covered the Four Critical Areas for Planning a Penetration Test. This blog will dive into the benefits of implementing a Progressive Penetration Testing Program and how it can improve overall security posture.

#1: Meet Industry Data Compliance Regulations

Every industry now requires some type of data compliance regulations and/or guidelines to ensure customer trustworthiness, protection of data, and to achieve proper security posture. Penetration binds organizations to the reality of their network health. When it comes time for compliance reporting and monitoring, penetration testing takes it to the next level by suggesting actions for remediation.

Regardless of the ever-changing industry landscape (threats and regulations), the goal is to ensure compliance. Standards like PCI DSS, NIST, HIPPA, NCUA ACET, FFIEC CAT, and others have become more than just a paperwork exercise or checkbox. Most auditors ask teams to use data-driven processes to show regulatory compliance and improve cyber-risk maturity.

# 2: Minimize Risks to Improve Cybersecurity Postures

A penetration test is one of the best ways to expose vulnerabilities and risks to a network. This ensures all systems are as secure as they can be. Adlumin’s MDR Team simulates different vantage points to see if any critical data can be accessed. Then, they can disrupt the kill chain by understanding the attack vectors leading to essential impacts.

All steps are meticulously documented so weaknesses can be exploited. A penetration test gives a baseline to work off to remediate the risk optimally and structurally. A sequence of the risks is provided, as well, to help tackle the highest risks first, then the others.

# 3: Stay Ahead of Cyber Threats and Hackers by Being Up-to-Date

Thinking ahead with the mindset of a cybercriminal sets proactive organizations apart from the ones that are only reacting to attacks. It is one thing to have an incident response plan for when an attack occurs, as this is vital for every organization regardless of industry. It is another thing to get ahead by penetrating a network as a cybercriminal would. Take advantage of programs that exist, like Progressive Penetration Testing, to see where the weak points are.

IBM states that in 2022, the average cost of a data breach will be $9.44M in the United States. Many organizations would fold if they were put in a situation like this. Thinking ahead can be the difference between an organization going under and thriving because data breaches are inevitable.

How are Penetration Testing Results Documented?

Complete results the most critical component of a test and should always be the result of a properly implemented penetration test. For example:

  1. Executive Summary report for high-level topics
  2. Pentest technical report for specific vulnerabilities and tasks
  3. Segmentation Report for understanding the types of attacks used
  4. Fix Actions report for resolving any issues uncovered

It’s essential to have comprehensive results that explain and document each vulnerability, evidence, impact, recommendation, and observed instance. Managed Detection and Response platforms plus services take the burden off already bogged-down IT teams, by implementing these tests and delivering actionable results.

The Proactive Cybersecurity Approach

With limited resources, most organizations struggle to prioritize vulnerabilities, identify exposures and weak points, and align to the larger business objectives to meet regulations of protected assets. Traditional penetration tests use limited formulaic methods and have not evolved to the constantly changing threat landscape organizations face.

Adlumin’s Progressive Penetration Testing provides real-world scenarios that are industry-specific threat assessments offering actionable recommendations. Every step is documented, providing a reverse-engineered blueprint to demonstrate how a cybercriminal can access the environment and gain access to critical systems laterally. Penetration tests ‘kill two birds with one stone’ by hitting multiple benefits that are required anyways. It just takes it a step further.

Progressive Penetration Testing Program

The Adlumin Progressive Penetration Testing Program offers comprehensive assessments tailored to each customer’s risk tolerance. By simulating different attack scenarios, from internal exploits to external threats, organizations can identify vulnerabilities and prioritize their cybersecurity efforts.

Traditional annual penetration tests no longer suffice against sophisticated cyber adversaries, as they provide only a snapshot of security health. Adlumin’s program goes beyond formulaic methodologies, addressing the evolving threat landscape with real-world scenarios and providing actionable recommendations.

Download this paper to:

Find out how to test, document and explain each vulnerability and its impact. We show how to collect, evidence, observed instances, and review remediation recommendations.