Multinational corporations face unique challenges when considering the best approach to penetration testing.
The penetration testing methods used by organizations whose operations are conducted within one region won't provide the whole picture for an organization whose operations span the globe.
Here, we’ll cover the essential considerations that multinational enterprise corporations should deliberate when pursuing a successful penetration testing engagement.
Large Corporations Have a Greater Risk of Attack
Multinational corporations are typically much larger than the average business, spanning over multiple countries, and have hundreds to thousands of employees. More employees means more targets for social engineering attacks, putting these large businesses at greater risk.
This is because people are often considered the first line of defense in security, and having more employees increases the attack surface. Thus, multinational corporations require a different approach to cyber security.
It is vital that any penetration test conducted against a large organization considers the number of employees and thoroughly assesses each department. Not every pentesting company performs social engineering assessments, so large, enterprise-level organizations must partner with a firm specializing in this area of expertise.
The Importance of Penetration Testing for Multinational Companies
Penetration tests go beyond the average security test, uncovering as many vulnerabilities as possible depending on the client’s scope. Security personnel generally focus on defensive security and lack knowledge of the most up-to-date and cutting-edge offensive techniques that can be found in third-party assessments. Additionally, an automated pentest will not pursue vulnerabilities to uncover deeper weaknesses.
Third-party firms employ ethical hackers who focus all of their attention on offensive security and, therefore, have a much better understanding of actual attackers' current techniques.
According to IBM, the average cost of a data breach in the US is $9.44M. This does not include the impact of a damaged reputation or the cost of additional remediation services. While penetration testing through an experienced cybersecurity company can seem costly, they are worth the investment to avoid the devastating effects of a data breach.
Multinational Corporations Are Uniquely Vulnerable to Cyber Attacks
Due to their size, enterprise and multinational organizations are extremely vulnerable, making them very appealing to attackers. As such, any partner penetration testing organization should have the resources and tools to attack and test the organization's vulnerabilities thoroughly.
Dispersed and remote enterprise penetration testers can devise a tailored penetration test framework and navigate an organization's many time zone restrictions.
Determine What Pentesting Services Suit Your Organization
A penetration testing partner that is the perfect fit for one organization may not be the ideal fit for your organization. A partner with experience working with enterprise organizations and other multinational corporations can help navigate internal communication and any legal issues that may arise.
You’ll also need to consider what cybersecurity services are vital to your organization. With different types of pentests available, it’s important to explore your options and determine what service — and which security expert — best fits your company’s needs.
Some factors to consider before choosing include:
- Timezone adaptability.
- Value for the cost.
- The security provider’s experience and specialties.
- Method of communication during the engagement with the client.
Establish Cyber Security Best Practices
Some penetration testing companies offer "one-and-done" tests, but they are not sufficient to protect an organization. Instead, organizations should seek to partner with a firm that will stay by their side for years to come.
The initial test is crucial, as it lays the groundwork for a security plan going forward — but retesting is also incredibly valuable and necessary. Threat actors constantly use new ways to infiltrate companies, and new vulnerabilities crop up as years pass.
Corporations should seek to work with a partner that changes with the times and can keep them secure now and in the future.
Find a Firm That Customizes Their Services to Your Needs
Multinational organizations should seek to partner with a security firm that will provide a customized experience that fits their individual needs.
During the scoping call, the security firm should ask the organization questions to better understand which types of attacks will be the most effective. If a partner organization doesn't take a customized approach, larger organizations will likely find that not all vulnerabilities have been uncovered.
Kevin Mitnick and The Global Ghost Team™ focus on each organization's uniqueness and design enterprise penetration testing plans to identify which areas pose the most significant risk to each one. Request more information about pentesting services that fit your needs here.