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Advanced Penetration Testing by Wil Allsopp

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Introduction

There is an old yet erroneous belief that fortune favors the brave. Fortune has and always will favor the prepared. When your organization experiences a serious security incident (and it will), it's your level of preparedness based on the understanding of the inevitability of such an event that will guide a successful recovery. It doesn't matter if you're responsible for the security of a local community college or if you're the CISO of an international bank—this fact will always remain true.

To quote Howard Ruff, “It wasn't raining when Noah built the ark.”

The first step to being prepared is being aware.

Coming Full Circle

There has always been the impression that you have to patch your systems and secure your networks because hackers are scanning vast address ranges looking for victims who haven't done these things and they'll take whatever vulnerable systems they can get. In a sense that's true—there have always been those who are satisfied with low hanging fruit. It was true back in the 80s as well—war dialing on the PSTN and such attacks are usually trivial to guard against if you know what you're up against. However, if you are specifically targeted by someone with time and resources, you have a problem of an altogether different magnitude. Put simply, gaining access to corporate systems by patiently targeting the users was usually the best way to go in the 80s and it's usually the best way now. However, the security industry, like any other, is constantly ...

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