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RE: Vulnerability Assessment vs. PenTest
From: Sol Invictus <sol () haveyoubeentested org>
Date: Sun, 06 Aug 2006 13:02:24 -0400

Ok.. now your adding words to what I was saying.

We were talking about booking a VA or Pentest and what the difference

If a Pentester is caught while testing it is acknowledged and he is
usually given the opportunity to continue as though he had not been
caught.  (Because chances are someone will be able to get around
detection given no time constraints.)

And anyway, if a "Bangin Sharp Pentester" is on the job, he shouldn't
get detected anyway, otherwise, he's not as sharp as he should be.  ;-P

You are naturally assuming that my ego is getting in the way here.  I
beg to differ.  My ego has nothing to do with this.  I've done a lot
more reading/researching/and testing that many others have.

On Sun, 2006-08-06 at 11:26 -0500, StyleWar wrote:
So - by your logic - if you bring a bangin sharp pen-tester in, and he's
caught and his ingress methods are mitigated while still in the footprinting
stage, that a pen-test did not actually occur... is that it? Or -- if
physical security is 'pen-tested' and the tester is caught in the parking
lot without credentials... no pen test existed or occurred eh?

Quit trying to convince yourself of your own dogma and read for

Sol wrote:

In the hands of a good pen tester, a pen test does NOT have to exploit 
vulnerabilities in order to achieve its value proposition.

If there's no verification of the vulnerabilities using exploits then it's
not a Penetration test.  What part of >penetration don't you understand?
Anything less is a Vulnerability assessment.  Period.

-----Original Message-----
From: StyleWar [mailto:stylewar () cox net] 
Sent: Saturday, August 05, 2006 7:01 PM
To: sol () haveyoubeentested org; 'Mark Ausley, CISSP'
Cc: pen-test () securityfocus com
Subject: RE: Vulnerability Assessment vs. PenTest

I can break it down like legos.

The value proposition of a pen test is an understanding of 
whether the investment into detection and response is at an 
appropriate level.

The value proposition of a vulnerability assessment is an 
understanding of whether internal controls such as patch 
management, physical security etc.
are adequate given a specific risk tolerance.


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