In today's hyper-connected digital landscape, the Business-to-Business (B2B) model has emerged as a dominant force, fostering seamless interactions and transactions between enterprises. As companies increasingly rely on technology to streamline their operations, expand their networks, and exchange critical data, the need for robust cybersecurity measures has never been more paramount. In this article, we’ll explore the importance of cyber security for your business, and also how internal pentesting can help you improve your security.
- According to a report by Cybersecurity Ventures, the cost of cybercrime is predicted to hit $8 trillion in 2023 and will grow to $10.5 trillion by 2025.
- Crimes that affect business a lot are - cyberattacks and ransomware. Last year, they took an average of 277 days (about 9 months) to identify and contain a breach.
- The average data breach cost was $4.35M last year - the highest average on record. The average cost of a ransomware attack was $4.54M in the same year.
- A single breach can compromise the trust and reputation of your company, leading to:
- Loss of revenue
- Loss of contracts
- Loss of customers
- According to a survey conducted by TrustRadius, 65% of B2B tech buyers say data security and data privacy are top considerations when purchasing new technology. 43% of breaches are insider threats, either intentional or unintentional.
This means that companies need to monitor both internal and external activity around their data.
Cybersecurity is the practice of protecting information systems and data from unauthorized access, use, modification, or destruction.
It encompasses a range of activities, such as:
- Identifying and assessing risks and vulnerabilities
- Implementing policies and procedures to prevent and mitigate cyberattacks
- Deploying tools and technologies to detect and respond to cyber incidents
- Educating and training employees and stakeholders on cybersecurity best practices
- Complying with relevant laws and regulations on data protection and privacy
B2B companies often handle sensitive customer data, such as personal information, financial records, intellectual property, and more. A breach of this data can result in legal liabilities, fines, lawsuits, reputational damage, and loss of trust.
B2B companies also exchange a lot of data with their partners. This data can be both internal and external data. A breach of this data can affect the supply chain, operations, quality, and delivery of products and services.
Every company has a lot of internal data such as employee records, financial statements, business plans etc. A breach of this data can expose confidential information, compromise strategic decisions, and affect employee morale.
B2B companies rely on network infrastructure to communicate and collaborate with their customers and partners. A breach of network data can disrupt business continuity, cause downtime, degrade performance, and compromise security.
A breach of any data that a company deals with can damage the credibility and trustworthiness of a B2B company. It can affect market share and competitive advantage.
You might invest a lot in research and development to create new products and services that meet the evolving needs of your customers, partners, and the market. A breach of this data can result in theft or sabotage of intellectual property and hence, loss of competitive edge.
B2B companies have to comply with various laws and regulations on data protection and privacy such as GDPR, CCPA, HIPAA, etc. A breach of compliance can result in penalties, sanctions, audits, and legal actions.
B2B companies aim for growth by expanding the customer base and venturing into new markets by leveraging their partner network, and market reach, and diversifying into various revenue streams. A breach of data can hinder growth.
To conduct internal pen tests at a B2B company, you need to follow 4 steps:
This phase involves passive intelligence gathering. This may include analyzing the traffic and ‘sniffing’ networks. You can collect information such as domain and subdomain names, data leaks, technical information shared on social networks, or forums, versions, and types of tech used. It may also include employee names and pwned passwords (if any). This phase’s goal is to identify all sensitive information that a third party may exploit.
In this phase, you can get better and deeper insight into the most exposed and critical elements of an organization’s infrastructure. This is an essential stage, especially if you are looking at vulnerabilities within the entire framework.
In this phase, we actively search for vulnerabilities that a third party would exploit. This phase generally uses automated programs that are designed to scan the network as thoroughly as possible. The goal here is to find as many vulnerabilities as you can.
This is the phase where you test all possible exploitation flaws that were identified in the previous phase.
A major way that most B2B companies improve their security posture is by conducting regular pentests. Internal pentest, or internal penetration testing, is a simulated cyberattack on the internal network of a B2B company. This cyberattack is performed by authorized security professionals with the aim of identifying and exploiting vulnerabilities and providing recommendations to remediate.
Internal pentest can help you improve your security posture by:
- Revealing hidden weaknesses and gaps in your internal network that could be exploited by malicious insiders or external attackers.
- Testing the effectiveness and resilience of the existing infrastructure.
- Evaluating the readiness and responsiveness of your security team and staff to a cyber incident.
- Providing actionable insights and guidance on how to improve the security posture and reduce the risk of exposure.
- Demonstrating compliance with relevant laws and regulations.
- Enhancing the confidence and trust of customers and partners.
One of the best ways to prepare for a threat is to simulate the threat and run scenarios to best fight the vulnerability. This is internal penetration testing which can help your team to identify and address vulnerabilities, test and improve their security controls, and measures, and evaluate & upskill your security team and staff accordingly. Internal pentests are not silver bullets, but a valuable tool that can help companies improve their security posture and reduce risk exposure.
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