How Penetration Test Differs From Network Audit

How Penetration Test Differs From Network Audit

A penetration test is basically a simulated attack against a system and is used to assess for the existence of exploitable vulnerabilities within that system. The main end goal of a penetration test is to fine-tune or harden the target system's security. In addition, penetration testing can enhance the performance of the security technologies in place, reveal poor internal security processes, help in the improvement of governance and compliance, uncover security controls that need to be implemented, provide management with insightful reports, helps the organization to align with security standards, protect data and give new perspective to your network, application, and data. A penetration test is not a one-time operation. It can be done every month, quarterly, twice a year, or once a year. Nevertheless, it is recommended to perform a pentest at least once a year. How often a business or company should engage in a penetration test will depend on the size, budget, infrastructure, regulations, laws, and compliance. You can talk with our cybersecurity experts to request a penetration testing service.

Network auditing is a process comprising gathering, analyzing, and studying the network data to assess the network's health. It usually gives the business awareness of how the network management and control operations concern internal and external compliance regulations. Network auditing usually involves the assessment of network: Availability, Control Implementation, Security, Management, and Performance. Network audit allows gaining visibility to any potential network issues that need rectification before they can impact the performance of a business. A network audit can help a business meet regulatory requirements and industry standards, reduce unknowns within a network, uncover revenue opportunities through identifying potential for selling Managed IT services, and produce actionable informed plans. A network audit can be performed every month, quarterly or bi-annually. However, it is recommended to perform a network audit at least twice a year.

A Network audit is performed on the network of the business or company. On the other hand, a penetration test is more diverse in regards to where it is or can be done. There are various types of pentest: Web application pentest, network security pentest, physical penetration testing, cryptocurrency penetration testing, cloud security penetration testing, and IoT security penetration testing. You can request a pentest service from highly-trained cybersecurity experts who have 35+ years of experience in penetration testing.

When you need a Network Audit?

A network audit should be performed as a formality. However, there are various instances when it is necessary to perform a network audit. Among the drivers to performing a network audit include:

·     After having inventory changes: As organizations grow, at some point, devices may be added on the fly to the network. This may lead the network administrators to have a vague idea of what may be running, as keeping track of every detail may be a challenge. Thus, a network audit is necessary to remove uncertainties and help clarify the impact and status of changes done over time on the network.

·     After Network Upgrades/Refreshes: As a business grows, there is a tendency to increase day-to-day operations. Due to this, the network may get clogged at some point, requiring a refresh or even an upgrade in the network. Therefore, it is advisable to carry a network audit at this to have on what is going on through the network and understand what needs to be upgraded, what needs replacement and so on.

·     For Problem resolution: It is common to have issues arise within an organization's network, for instance, having low latency, poor bandwidths, having, among others. For this, a network audit can be used to troubleshoot and resolve these issues.

·     For compliance requirements: A business will be required to perform a network audit to prepare for an audit and the external auditors that will be assessing the organization’s compliance to the specific standards required. There are different compliance standards for different industries (healthcare, financial, etc.), such as HIPPA and PCI DSS, among others.

When do you need a Penetration Test?

A company should plan penetration testing services to be able to locate and mitigate security risks regularly. Even if your environment is the same, newly found vulnerabilities may affect your environment. 


If you want to have a penetration test performed on your assets to ensure your security, request a penetration test from our experienced pentesters.