Our Approach and
The SecureState Profiling Team are well known and highly regarded as
experts in Penetration Testing. Our approach follows industry accepted
testing methodologies such as
NIST 800-115 and OSSTMM. By following these methodologies, our clients can accurately
replicate the testing SecureState has performed in their own environment
to accurately mitigate identified vulnerabilities. The SecureState
Profiling Team also helps identify strategic “root cause” issues through
our Penetration Tests. Our Risk Management Team is uniquely positioned
to work closely with the Profiling Team in order to assist clients with
mitigating these strategic “root cause” issues.
Phase I – Pre-engagement Interactions:
In this phase, SecureState works with the client to establish the rules
of engagement as well as the scope and exchange contact information for both
parties. SecureState provides a detailed Project Charter which contains
information on scope and everything that will be required to conduct the
testing. The Project Charter is discussed during the kickoff call prior to
the beginning of the engagement.
Phase II – Vulnerability Analysis:
SecureState will use the external ASV vulnerability scan results provided
by the client to conduct this Vulnerability Analysis.
The ASV vulnerability scan results provide SecureState with not only
vulnerability information, but also the exposed ports and services.
SecureState will assess open ports and services from the scans to look for
potential targets, such as accessible HTTP, Telnet, RDP, and other ports
that allow remote access or web server functionality.
Vulnerability scanners are notorious for outputting numerous false
positives that are not applicable to a given environment. SecureState
consultants manually review scanner outputs to ensure verified
vulnerabilities are applicable to only your PCI environment.
Phase III – Web Application Black Box Testing:
During PCI Attack and Penetration Testing, SecureState uses a limited
Black Box level approach to test web applications that have been
encountered. A Black-Box test design treats the system as a “black-box,” so
it does not explicitly use knowledge of the internal structure. Black Box
test design is usually described as focusing on testing functional
requirements. Black Box testing will also help to identify many of the OWASP
Top Ten vulnerabilities that are common to web applications. All tests will
be made against the identified web applications. This phase meets the
PCI-DSS requirement for application layer testing.
Phase IV – Exploitation:
First, SecureState will manually validate the results from the scan.
Next, all identified vulnerabilities will be assessed as to the likelihood
of exploitation. Communication will be made with the client’s Project Lead
prior to any type of intrusive activity that could potentially impact
network performance or system stability. Any high or critical risk exploit
will also be communicated to the client upon discovery in order to initiate
Phase V – Locate Card Holder Data:
Once vulnerabilities have been exploited, SecureState will use any access
obtained to locate card holder data. During this phase, we will also utilize
multiple vulnerabilities and attack vectors to achieve a greater attack.
This is called the SecureState Vulnerability Linkage Theory (VLT) and is
provided to clients through visual representation in our report.
Communication will be made with the client’s Project Lead once the card
holder data is accessed so that corrective action may be implemented.
Phase VI – Post Exploitation:
The Post Exploitation Phase includes pillaging, penetrating further into
the network, documentation and erasing any footsteps we may have left
Phase VII – Reporting:
As part of the deliverable, SecureState provides a report which contains
a short, graphical summary aimed at senior management; a narrative body
which details major findings, and a detailed findings section aimed at the
technical staff. SecureState also provides a closing call and high level
executive presentation to summarize the penetration test as well as provide
an opportunity to ask questions about the engagement.