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Penetration Testing (Pen Testing)

Simple Definition for Beginners: Penetration testing, or pen testing, is a security assessment method that simulates cyberattacks to identify and fix vulnerabilities in computer systems, networks, or applications. Common Use Example: A cybersecurity team conducts penetration testing on a company's web application to identify weaknesses in the code, server configurations, or network defenses before they can be exploited by malicious hackers. Technical Definition for Professionals: Penetration Testing (Pen Testing) is a proactive cybersecurity approach where authorized security professionals simulate real-world cyberattacks to assess the security posture of IT systems, networks, and applications. Penetration tests involve identifying and exploiting vulnerabilities, misconfigurations, and weaknesses that could be exploited by malicious actors. These tests can include external assessments (targeting public-facing systems) or internal assessments (targeting internal networks and assets). The goal of penetration testing is to uncover security gaps, assess the effectiveness of security controls, validate security policies, and provide recommendations for remediation and risk mitigation. Penetration testing is typically performed using automated tools, manual testing techniques, and ethical hacking methodologies.

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