Cloud Penetration Testing

In recent years, a number of SMEs have opted to switch to a cloud-based hosting environment, that takes the pressure off of onsite server maintenance. As a result of this shift, attackers target cloud-based servers for configuration loopholes and exposed data.

A cloud configuration assessment will benefit any business that hosts its servers and databases within the cloud and would like assurance it has been configured correctly and securely.

Cloud Configuration Review

What is cloud penetration testing?

Cloud penetration testing is the process of assessing the security configuration of a cloud computing environment. The goal of cloud penetration testing is to identify vulnerabilities and weaknesses in a system that attackers could exploit. Cloud security test adheres to the guidelines set forth by the cloud service providers, such as

Amazon Web Services (AWS)


Microsoft Azure


Google Cloud Platform (GCP)


What are the challenges in cloud penetration testing?

There are several challenges associated with cloud security testing. One challenge is that the cloud environment is constantly changing, which makes it difficult to keep up with the latest security threats.

Another is that the cloud environment is often distributed across multiple geographical locations, sometimes making it difficult for testers to access the relevant data. Additionally, many cloud environments are designed to be highly available and scalable, which can make it difficult to simulate realistic attack scenarios.


What common vulnerabilities exist in a cloud computing environment?

Insecure APIs

Most cloud providers offer APIs that can be used to manage various aspects of your account, from provisioning new resources to configuring security settings. If these APIs are not adequately secured, an attacker could gain access to them and use them to modify the victim account maliciously.


Weak Passwords 

Using weak or easily guessable passwords is one of the most common mistakes people make when it comes to securing their accounts. Attackers can use brute force methods to try to guess passwords, or they may obtain password lists from previous data breaches. Either way, using strong and unique passwords is essential for keeping your account safe.


Improper Access Control

Another common mistake is not properly restricting who has access to an account. If too many users have access, or do not adequately restrict what each person can do, it increases the potential that someone will make a mistake that could lead to a compromise.


Insecure Configuration

Failing to securely configure cloud settings can lead to a compromise. For example, using default or weak settings can leave the cloud account open to attack.


What are the benefits of cloud penetration testing?


✓ Increased security 

By testing the security of your cloud infrastructure, you can identify and fix any vulnerabilities before attackers have a chance to exploit them.


✓ Improved compliance 

Many compliance requirements, such as PCI DSS, mandate regular penetration testing. By conducting tests in the cloud, you can ensure that your infrastructure meets these requirements.


✓ Enhanced visibility 

By testing in the cloud, you can gain insights into your infrastructure that would otherwise be unavailable.


✓ Reduced risk

By identifying and fixing vulnerabilities before they can be exploited, you can reduce the risk of a successful attack.


✓ Better preparedness

Cloud penetration testing can help you prepare for future attacks by simulating real-world scenarios.


✓ Increased confidence

By demonstrating the security of your cloud infrastructure, you can build confidence in your ability to protect data and assets.


What are the types of cloud penetration testing?

Cloud penetration testing can be classified into three levels depending on the type of assessment the client would like.

Grey-box testing – the tester has some knowledge of the system but not full access.

White-box testing – the tester has full access to the system and its code.

Black-box testing – the tester has no prior knowledge of the system under test.


What is the cloud penetration testing process?

    1. Reconnaissance 

The first step in any penetration test is reconnaissance, which involves gathering information about the target system.


    2. Automated Testing

Automated testing involves a high-level approach using our internally developed software to help highlight known issues against the cloud platform under assessment.


    3. Manual Testing

It is then necessary to manually review the findings above for any false positives, then a further manual assessment is carried out to highlight the areas that automation is unable to cover.


    4. Reporting

Once the penetration test has been completed, the results are compiled into a report. This report includes a list of all configuration issues that were identified, as well as details on how to remedy them.


How long does a cloud configuration review take to perform?

There are numerous variables that can influence the scoping of a cloud configuration review. The main factors are:

  • Which cloud provider has been used
  • Number of services
  • Number of hosts within the services
  • Size of organisation


How much is a cloud penetration test?

A cloud configuration review cost is calculated by the number of days a penetration tester will take to fulfil the agreed scope. The number of days can be determined by filling out our penetration testing scoping form or messaging us through our contact form to arrange a scoping call with one of our senior penetration testers.


What are the deliverables following a cloud configuration review?

Following the completion of a cloud configuration review, the security consultants will produce a custom report that highlights any issues identified, their risk levels, and recommendations regarding how to remedy them.


Protect your Cloud infrastructure

Organisations are turning to the cloud to become more agile and reduce time to market. Whether developing a cloud-native application or migrating to an existing one, Aardwolf Security can help you increase innovation, reliability, and efficiency without sacrificing security. Our penetration testing allows security teams to find and eliminate business-critical vulnerabilities through exploratory risk analysis and business logic testing.

Get in touch today to speak with one of our Senior Consultants, or fill out our 5-minute online quote form for a bespoke quote today.