Web Application Penetration Testing Tutorial For Beginners

Understanding Information Gathering in Web Application Penetration Testing

What is Information Gathering in Penetration Testing?

Information gathering, as the name suggests, is all about gathering information about the target system or network. It is the first and one of the most crucial steps in penetration testing

Here, the pen testers try to find as much information as possible about the target. The level of information helps in making the process of finding vulnerabilities easier. This information can include identification of the owner of the target/organization, server location, IP addresses, tech stack in use, network information, and more. 

For gathering information, various types of tools, techniques, as well as public resources are used.

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The process of knowing about target, directly and indirectly, is called _________

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Methods of Information Gathering in Web App Pentesting

Following are the primary information gathering methods in web penetration testing:

  • Footprinting

Footprinting involves collecting information about the target network or system using distinct techniques for intrusion. It also helps in determining the security posture of the target machine. 

Hackers can use both active and passive footprinting. In active footprinting, the hackers use certain techniques and tools to connect with the target machine. It can include the use of ping sweep or commands. 

On the other hand, passive footprinting includes a collection of the target’s information and data that is publicly available. For instance, gathering information through the website, social media handles, etc. 

While doing footprinting as part of penetration testing, three kinds of footprinting are usually done. These include open source footprinting, network-based footprinting, and DNS interrogation. 

  • Scanning

Scanning includes a number of processes like identification of hosts, ports, services running on the target network. 

The attackers do scanning to find an overview of the target and detect the possibilities of rolling out attacks. They check out the missing patches, weak authentication, and encryption algorithms, etc. 

  • Enumeration

At the stage of enumeration, the attackers initiate the process of compromising the vulnerabilities or weaknesses in the target. Most of the details are found from open ports. These details can be usernames, user groups, machine names, banners, DNS details, IP tables, and more.

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Which one is not a part of Information Gathering?

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Introduction to Information Gathering

Introduction to Information Gathering

Information Gathering Using Burpsuite

Information Gathering Using Burpsuite

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