Article By: Jessica Lawrence

It’s hard to measure risk without knowing the weaknesses in your system, people and processes. Understanding your vulnerabities and potential exposure from the adversary perspective is vital to successful defense of your system and navigating through an attack.  To this end Adversary Emulation and Simultation are important tools to both knowing your systems and validating their capabilities.
Emulating an adversary, whether in a lab, test or live environment is essential to building confidence in how your people and processes will work in a real attack scenario. An organization with a good vulnerability management program that includes vulnerability scanning, penetration testing and red teaming, is setting themselves up to be stronger and more resilient against adversaries.
Vulnerability scanning aims to identify weaknesses in your network, while penetration testing actively seeks to exploit as many vulnerabilities as it can find, both validating vulnerability findings as well as identifying vulnerabilities many commercial scanners may miss. A red team is similar to penetration testing but will encompass the entire life cycle of an adversary attack, validating multiple vulnerabilities and exposures along the way. It attempts to test your detection, response capabilities and how resilient your systems and processes are. This can help determine if you are empowered to continue operating through the attack which challenges not just your network defenses but your people as well.
Cyber threat simulation focuses on providing the threat component to models, table top exercises, or advanced simulation environments designed to test and observe the interactions of systems and processes. These can enable an organization to rapidly introduce or remove variables and determine the resulting changes they incur without having to develop and maintain the actual underlying capabilities or have the architecture in place to run a full emulation test. Each approach has its benefits, and Ardalyst has the expertise to employ any and all of these techniques to help enhance your risk management and cyber resiliency.

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