Pen tests, also known as penetration testing, are a set of procedures that can diagnose potential security concerns within a company. A pen test usually involves ethical hackers trying whatever possible means they can think of in order to break into a company’s computers. This isn’t a malicious attack though. Instead, it’s an attempt to find security holes and fix them before they’re discovered by a malicious hacker.
Pen testing typically involves software-based attacks. But it can even involve attempts to physically interact with a system. Pen tests are typically quite costly. But you can perform your own lower intensity pen testing all on your own in just four steps. This is generally a great way to secure your home offices or workspaces.
The first step involves checking your router’s local URL. Your router will typically have a URL printed somewhere on it that points to its configuration menu. The username and password are shared by default with all other routers of a similar make and model. This means that anyone can log into it by just looking that information up on the Internet. You should always log in to your router’s online configuration and change its administrative password to something other than the default.
You can start the second step by making scheduled changes to your Wi-Fi password. You should generally change your password twice a year. So every six months you should change the password used to connect to your Wi-Fi. This also involves updating all of your Wi-Fi-enabled devices to make use of that new password.
Thirdly, make use of the haveibeenpwned.com service. You simply need to put your email address into the system and you’ll see a list of your potentially compromised accounts on various sites. These are all locations where hackers might be able to log in with your current password. You should go through the list and disable your account at any of the sites you don’t use anymore. Then you should change the password on any of the sites you still make use of.
The fourth step involves a secure device check. You should go through all of your mobile devices and make sure they’ve been properly secured. This involves the use of either a secure and regularly updated password or biometric data such as a fingerprint. You should always disable gesture-based logins on your devices. Anyone who accesses your mobile device can look for telltale marks on the phone to trace your login gesture.
Finally, keep in mind that a pen test light also provides a solid way to test your system’s security measures. A light test isn’t as in-depth as a true pen test. But it’s far more affordable for a home or small business.