What Is Red Teaming in Cyber Security? Here’s an Inside Look.
In cyber security, as with in any field, preparation is the key. It is important to take a proactive approach to defense against the latest attacks and ensure that all security controls and procedures are up-to-date and able to accomplish their purposes. Reports from PurpleSec show that 68% of small businesses store email addresses and 64% store phone numbers. A hacker will obviously target these valuable data organizations more than any other. In this case, being prepared clearly is the most important element. The good news is that there are ways to make sure your company is as ready as possible for cyber attacks.
Consider buying a smartphone; the vendor tells you that this smartphone will not break easily. Probably the first thing you do is testing by your own and make sure that it really is firm. The same thing goes for cyber security. It is very common in security methods to have a team of ethical hackers who seek to identify and exploit vulnerabilities in an organization’s cyber defenses using advanced attack methods. The term “red teaming” is used to describe this method.
No software or standard procedure can test your systems as effectively as an actual attack. Red teams act as malicious adversaries in order to give insight into how security is handled. There’s more to this approach than just cyber security. Red team and the military have long been linked. The term red teaming in the military refers to the concept of evaluating strategy quality and strength from an external viewpoint. It is possible to test the security of an organization with such an attack, which does not focus solely on outside intrusions. A red team is essential for assessing the readiness and maturity of the organization for prevention, detection, and mitigation of risk.
What’s the Difference Between Red Team and Blue Team?
Typically, red teams and blue teams have the same goal, to improve an organization’s security. The main difference between them is in their perspective and approach. To see the effectiveness of a company’s security controls, a red team performs comprehensive attacks. On the other hand, we need a team in this game to do the protecting against cyber threat. Generally speaking, the red team plays offense while the blue team plays defense.
Red team members’ job is to make the attack as realistic and chaotic as possible so both teams are equally challenged, to test the effectiveness of Blue Team. Various types of attacks could be used by the Red Team, including phishing, vishing, the identification of vulnerabilities, firewall penetration, etc. Meanwhile, the Blue Team works to stop these stimulated attacks. Therefore, defensive teams learn to react to a wide variety of situations. By deploying a red and blue team strategy, a company is able to benefit from two very different perspectives and expertise.
Red Teaming vs. Penetration Testing
It is obvious that penetration testing and red teaming go hand in hand. However, they are not exactly the same. In reality, penetration testing is only a small part of red teaming and despite its importance, pen testing is just one part of what a red team does. While they have a lot in common, they cannot be used interchangeably.
The purpose of penetration testing is to identify vulnerabilities of companies, but on a broader scale and in more general terms than red teaming. The majority of pen-testers do not follow all the steps attackers would usually take during a targeted attack. A red team’s mission is much bigger than that of a pen tester, who often seeks only to get access to a network. During Red Team exercises, defensive strategies and risk analyses are performed to simulate real-world APT scenarios and Identify and map processes and routes that enable access to IT systems and facilities. As a result, in both types of attacks, the main difference is the depth of the breach or how far the attacker will go to allow their target to be reached.
Red Teaming Methodology
Red Teaming methodology is based on global industry-accepted standards, which are used in every Red Team Operation. In general, the methodology is based on the NATO CCDCOE, OWASP, PTES, US Army Red Teaming Handbook v7, but includes more details than the initial frameworks.
An initial step in a Red Team operation is to establish rules of engagement with the client so that they are clear about the target and what types of physical, social engineering, and cyber attacks are permitted. All security team goals will be identified through this process. The Red Team will begin its engagement when the goals are set.
The purpose of red teams is typically to test organizations’ detection and response capabilities rigorously using intelligence-driven, black box methods. A typical approach would include:
An essential step of the process is reconnaissance, which involves gathering information. LinkedIn, Google, Twitter, Facebook, and other publicly available tools are used for this purpose. A part of this step is acquiring or building the tools needed for the red team test.
Staging & Weaponization:
Following the identification of vulnerabilities and forming a plan of attack, the next step of an engagement is staging – acquiring, configuring, and obscuring the resources necessary to perpetrate the attack. You may want to set up servers for Command & Control (C2) and social engineering activity or develop malicious code or custom malware.
Attack delivery is about compromising and gaining access to the target network. In line with their goal, ethical hackers may exploit discovered vulnerabilities, break weak employee passwords through brute force, and create fake email communications in order to launch phishing attacks and drop malware.
A red team engagement begins after establishing a foothold in a target network which is the foundation for determining the agreed-upon objectives. The attackers may be moving lateral across the network, escalating privileges, and controlling the data exfiltration.
Reporting and Analysis:
Red teaming engagements typically result in a comprehensive report prepared for you and your stakeholders to serve as a summary of findings, a catalog of attacks, and recommendations regarding how to mitigate or mitigate any threats discovered.
Act Now Before It Gets Too Late!
When done correctly, Red Teaming can expose vulnerabilities in your system that you did not even know you had and can aid in addressing them. Implementing an adversarial strategy will allow you to simulate how hackers will behave if they want to steal your data or damage your business.
SecureBug will build a customized offensive program based on crowd-sourced Red-Team expertise, testing your defenses against typical attacks, helping to improve your security posture.