Conventional security mechanisms and vulnerability scanners make it possible to clean up many security gaps - but what remains is usually a patchwork quilt that still leaves plenty of opportunities for resourceful hackers. To really test the security of IT networks, the eyes of a hacker are needed. Because only they can see vulnerabilities that carefully camouflage themselves and only gain visibility when it is too late. Autonomous pentesting uses the same methods as hackers, does not require waiting times like a professional pentester, and can also be used at any time to monitor the infrastructure on an ongoing basis.
Cybercrime, in its various forms, represents an increasing threat to the EU. Cyberattacks are highly complex crimes and are almost always successful due to organizations not knowing where they are at risk. Meanwhile the perpetrators behind these crimes are becoming increasingly agile, exploiting new vulnerabilities most often created by weaknesses in code, poor user and admin credentials, software and hardware misconfigurations, and the continuous use of dangerous product defaults. One of the most recent warnings was published in the Internet Organised Crime Assessment (IOCTA), Europol’s assessment of the cybercrime landscape. “Cyber-attacks: the apex of crime-as-a-service” impressively shows how much cyber-crime has evolved and has now become its own industry. Now, the relevance of cybersecurity in value creation has never been higher.
A successful cyberattack can not only mean the outflow of data, but also cause a production stop. In extreme cases, this leads to a company's inability to pay a ransom - and thus can cause insolvency. The financial losses are enormous, and the cost of security is ever growing. The Germany’s digital association BITKOM values its yearly damage at more than 200 billion Euros. Almost all organizations have been affected and often report data theft, espionage, and sabotage. Attackers are becoming increasingly professional, are well organized, and also closely monitor trend in the IT security industry and many are experts at security technologies and approaches. Many software companies regularly issue advisories on vulnerabilities they, or researchers, have discovered, which are then almost immediately exploited due to attackers staying one step ahead patch cycles. The rule is that those who patch too late lose out in the race against time. The pressure on IT specialists and security professionals is correspondingly high.
According to a Bitkom study, the number of vacancies for IT specialists across all industries in Germany is at a record figure of 137,000 in 2023. In other European countries there is no different picture: Organizations are lacking an enormous number of specialists. This shortage is putting additional pressure on corporate IT departments, while the number of security vulnerabilities and corresponding exploits are increasing daily. Although the EU Commission's Cyber Resilience Act holds out the prospect of a law that will make manufacturers of technology with digital elements much more accountable, it will be some time before the law comes into force. In addition, existing technology is not covered and must therefore also be protected.