Writing an Effective Penetration Testing Report

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Dear PenTest Readers,

We would like to proudly present you the newest issue of PenTest. We hope that you will find many interesting articles inside the magazine and that you will have time to read all of them. 
We are really counting on your feedback here!

In this issue you will see different approaches to writing an effective penetration testing report. You can read both technical articles and those which provide key insights. You will see 10 different approaches and an interview with Mihai Raneti- CEO of CyberFog. We will give you answers to questions:
- why is a penetration testing report so important?
- who is it for?
- and the most important: what should the report contain?

Enjoy your reading,
PenTest Magazine’s
Editorial Team


Table of contents:


Approach by Lorenzo Vogelsang 

A report “is a statement of the results of an investigation or of any matter on which definite information is required”(Oxford Dictionary). The penetration testing in particular is the ultimate outcome you can deliver to a client after the “technical” penetration testing process is completed. An effective pentest report should document all the security discoveries and a thorough remediation plan so that the client's overall security could be improved at a later stage.


Interview with Mihai Raneti 

Mihai has a degree in Psychology and various certifications in the field of IT and cybersecurity. He is passionate about quantum physics, math, history and technology. He has a critical thinking,
always sees the bigger picture and is keen on problem solving. He is the brain behind a pioneering cybersecurity technology.


Approach by Chrissa Constantine

A penetration test, or pentest, is a means to evaluate the security of a system by simulating an attack with the end goal of discovering issues before attackers and reporting them to the organization. Pentesting can be internal or external, and each has advantages and disadvantages. 


Approach by Mattia Reggiani

Penetration testing is a method of evaluating the security posture of a computer system, network or application by simulating an attack from malicious users. The process involves an active analysis of the system for any potential vulnerabilities and their exploitation. This could result from improper system configuration, known and unknown hardware or software flaws, or operation weakness in process or countermeasures.


Approach by Bruce Williams 

Writing a great pen testing report requires both an understanding of the range of pen testing tools and client expectations. The agreement between the client business and the pen tester deals with expectations of both parties. This article covers the flow of this process. I train students to write pen test reports. I use the saying a man with two watches will never know the right time. With so many pen test tools, you are like that man with two watches, never too sure of the right number of vulnerabilities present in your website. This article is designed to help you know which will reveal the correct answer. The correct answer is a happy client.


Approach by Alex Torres 

In order to fully understand what needs to be done with the penetration testing report, several areas need to be discussed. These areas include, but are not limited to: the reason for the penetration testing report, keeping the reports secure, methods of remediating one's environment against this report, and a review of limitations of the report. A brief overview of the major penetration testing methodologies will also be discussed, followed by a discussion on how to measure a successful penetration testing program. Armed with this information, we should have the tools and techniques to properly manage a penetration testing report.


Approach by Paulo H., Juliano S., Mike G., Renato B., Thiago S. and Thiago F. 

This article is part of research on invasion methods underway at the University Nove de Julho (UNINOVE, Brazil) under the coordination of Dr. Paulo Henrique Pereira. The project aims to carry out penetration tests for the analysis of vulnerabilities in servers, web applications and operating systems, including mobile. The research aims to analyze the potential that a cybercriminal could gather as tools of invasive and invasive attacks and that the attacker could do when she accesses their targets.


Approach by Vanshidhar 

There is an old saying in the consulting business: “If you do not document it, it did not happen.” (Read it somewhere in the library). A report, in its definition, is a statement of the results of an investigation or of any matter on which definite information is required.


Approach by Junior Carreiro 

Among the phases of a pentest, we can say that the report is the most important because it is the product that will be delivered to the client and the client side will not always have people with technical knowledge. For this reason, writing a good report, well written and providing evidence, is of maximum importance.


Approach by Eric Schultz 

The database is dumped. The file server is served. The domain controller is controlled -- by you. It's official. The domain is yours. The euphoric high climaxes with a round of figurative high fives among the team for a job well done. Chairs lean back as the first breaths of relaxation enter lungs that have previously been fueled by caffeine and adrenaline. As the testing wraps up, other testers quickly get siphoned off to new tasks and you find yourself the sole survivor left to generate the report.


Approach by Juan Pablo Quiñe

One of the first problems is to get the budget to start an evaluation. Some arguments to get budget to make an evaluation could be: regulation, audit, enforcement, risk management, a fusion with some corporate, to know where we are in security, a suspected fraud, the need of the new CSO/CISO, or who knows, maybe a business requirement.

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