Whether you want to become a cyber security analyst, a software developer, or a network security engineer, learning how to use penetration tester tools is essential. Penetration testing, or pentesting, tools are widely used in the online space to protect the cyber world from potential vulnerabilities and security holes.
This translates into a high demand for pen testers in the cyber security industry. If you want to learn more about pentesting tools, this article will guide you. We will go over a list of penetration tester tools and top companies that use them. We will also discuss the cost and availability of penetration tester tools to help you select the best ones for your needs.
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The 10 Best Penetration Tester Tools
- Burp Suite
- John The Ripper
- Linux Exploit Suggester
What Are Penetration Tester Tools?
Penetration tester tools are automated vulnerability scanners that aid the security team in detecting potential network traffic weaknesses and improving the overall system security posture. Depending on your choice of pen testing tool, you can use their automation features for password cracking, management of exploitable vulnerabilities, and to identify application weaknesses.
Computer security professionals use penetration testing tools to identify system security flaws to strengthen the organization’s network and security system. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook rate for information security analysts is projected to be 33 percent between 2020 and 2030. According to ZipRecruiter, the average salary for penetration testers is $116,323.
What Are the Main Types of Penetration Tester Tools?
There are various types of penetration tester tools available to address a wide range of security issues. This is because penetration testing is used for a wide range of platforms, including mobile applications, network perimeters, wireless networks, web applications, and operating systems.
Penetration tester tools are also used in application security testing to perform dynamic analysis and static analysis. They highlight vulnerabilities from the inside out. Continue reading to learn about the five main types of penetration tester tools used to perform various security assessments.
Password Cracker and Recovery
Weak passwords pose a tangible threat to a system and its users’ data. Several pen testing tool features enable professionals to determine the strength of a password’s effectiveness. Password cracking is also used to recover or gain access to lost passwords.
As a cyber security analyst or ethical hacker, you’ll use password cracking pen testing tools to identify weak password vulnerabilities in diction, length, and patterns. Weak passwords can greatly increase the likelihood of a cyber attack.
Examples of Password Cracking and Recovery Tools
- John The Ripper
A fundamental feature offered by pen testing software is vulnerability scanning of operating systems, network packets, mobile applications, and web applications. There are various tools that administer security vulnerability testing to aid in the overall security management of the system.
Pen testing tools conduct risk assessments, identify weak spots, perform security audits, and analyze programming bugs during the vulnerability scanning process. The goal of vulnerability scanning is to improve the security of the application, network, and computer system ecosystem.
Examples of Vulnerability Scanning Tools
- Burp Suite
- Linux Exploit Suggester
If you want to become a big data engineer in 2021, you should be familiar with this type of penetration testing tool. The database exploitation feature employs SQL Injection techniques to gain access to the backend of databases. Company data is constantly under threat, and data servers are prone to real-world attacks.
Pen testers use SQL Injection and web penetration techniques to simulate database attacks, identify high-risk vulnerabilities, and protect the organizations from potential data leaks. Identifying security weaknesses before they become a problem is important to every tech-heavy company.
Example of Database Exploit Tools
Wireless Network Security Testing
Hackers also use Wi-Fi networks to illegally obtain sensitive information from users. As a result, security professionals conduct wireless testing for mobile phones, computers, and other Internet of Things devices using pen testing tools. The tools investigate network vulnerabilities and various attack strategies to develop a sophisticated security solution for potential cyber attacks.
Example of Wireless Network Security Testing Tools
Code Debugging and Testing
Identifying potential bugs across the command-line interface and code is essential for developing an optimal and efficient application. This type of penetration testing software is ideal for those considering a software engineering career path.
Debugging and testing code enables automated task repetition, smooth development, and an easy application scalability process. To ensure a faster development cycle, pen testing tools will analyze software code and identify potential flaws and errors.
Example of Code Debugging and Testing Tools
Penetration Testing Cheat Sheet: A Tabular List of Penetration Tester Tools
|Tool||Uses||Companies That Use It||Cost||Availability|
|Aircrack-Ng||Wireless Network Security, Network Sniffer Hacking||Linus Torvalds (Linux OS), Individual Penetration Testers||Free||Open Source|
|Apktool||Code Debugging for Android Applications, Reverse Engineering||Google, Bluestacks, WinZip||Free||Open Source|
|Burp Suite||Web Application Security, Vulnerability Testing||NASA, U.S. Air Force, Auto Trader, Danske Bank, Expedia Group||Enterprise Edition: $4,999/Year
Professional Edition: $399
Community Edition: Free
|Hashcat||Password Cracker, Password Recovery||Individual Penetration Testers and Sysadmin||Free||Open Source|
|John The Ripper||Password Cracker||Individual Penetration Testers and Sysadmin||Free||Open Source|
|Linux Exploit Suggester||Linux System Vulnerability Scanner||Individual Penetration Testers and Sysadmin Working with Kali Linux||Free||Open Source|
|Metasploit||Vulnerability Scanner, Evidence Collection and Reporting||Brookfield Properties, Ball Aerospace and Tech, Autodesk, California Resources Corporation||Community Framework Edition: Free
Pro Edition:$15,329.99 (Can vary, get in touch with Rapid7 to find out more)
|MobSF||Vulnerability Assessment, Mobile Application Pen Testing||Individual Penetration Testers and App Developers||Free||Open Source|
|SQLmap||Database Exploit and Testing||Individual Database Engineers and Developers||Free||Open Source|
|Wireshark||Network Protocol Analyzer, Vulnerability Scanner||AT&T, Samsung Electronics, Boeing, FireEye, Northrop Grumman||Free||Open Source|
The Best Penetration Tester Tools, Explained
Continue reading to discover the top ten best penetration tester tools for various system and network security purposes. We will explain the functions of each tool to assist you in selecting the pen testing tool that is best suited to your professional development and goals.
- Type: Wireless Network Security Testing Tool
- Companies That Use Aircrack-Ng: Linus Torvalds (Linux OS)
- Aircrack-Ng Cost and Availability: Free and Open Source
Aircrack-Ng is a pen testing tool for securing Wi-Fi networks. It is a popular open-source tool that runs on Windows, macOS, OpenBSD, and Linux. The Aircrack-Ng Suite includes features such as wireless network driver testing, password cracking, injection flaw testing, and simulated attack.
- Type: Code Debugging and Testing Tool
- Companies That Use Apktool: Google, Bluestacks
- Apktool Cost and Availability: Free and Open Source
Apktool is a pen testing tool for Android applications that provides automated code debugging and programming modifications via the command line. It can conduct vulnerability testing on Android applications. Apktool can also restore the software development process to its original state postcode modification. You must be familiar with Java and the Android SDK to use this tool.
- Type: Vulnerability Scanning Tool
- Companies That Use Burp Suite: NASA, U.S. Air Force, Expedia Group
- Burp Suite Cost and Availability: Enterprise Edition: $4,999/Year, Professional Edition: $399, Community Edition: Free
Burp Suite is a popular application security and system vulnerability scanner tool that offers a free, pro, and enterprise edition. The company currently reports having over 15,000 organizations as clients and over 60,000 pen testers as users. Some of the features of Burp Suite include web application security testing, automated vulnerability scanning, and code testing.
- Type: Password Cracker and Recovery Tool
- Companies That Use Hashcat: Individual Penetration Testers and Sysadmins
- Hashcat Cost and Availability: Free and Open Source
Passwords are the key to accessing sensitive information, so keeping them secure is critical. Hashcat contributes to this process by offering password cracking and recovery features. The tool is compatible with macOS, Linux, and Windows OS and can be used across multiple platforms. It offers password and dictionary attack features for fast recovery.
John The Ripper
- Type: Password Cracker and Recovery Tool
- Companies That Use John The Ripper: Individual Penetration Testers and Sysadmins
- John The Ripper Cost and Availability: Free and Open Source
John The Ripper is another password cracking and recovery tool that is a free and open-source software. The tool supports Linux, macOS, Windows, and Solaris. It can also be run across web applications, network traffic, cloud AWS, and database servers. It is a great pen testing tool for novice users, with features that allow you to quickly identify weak passwords.
Linux Exploit Suggester
- Type: Vulnerability Scanning Tool for Linux
- Companies That Use Linux Exploit Suggester: Individual Penetration Testers and Sysadmin Working with Kali Linux
- Linux Exploit Suggester Cost and Availability: Free and Open Source
This Linux penetration tester tool is used for security auditing and vulnerability scanning on Kali Linux and Linux Kernel systems. System administrators and pen testers use this tool to expose system weaknesses, verify, and implement security measures.
- Type: Vulnerability Scanning Tool
- Companies That Use Metasploit: Ball and Aerospace Tech, California Resources Corporation, Autodesk
- Metasploit Cost and Availability: Community Framework Edition: Free, Pro Edition:$15,329.99 (Can vary, get in touch with Rapid7 to find out more)
Metasploit is a vulnerability scanner tool that offers security assessment management, security measures implementation, and application vulnerability detection. It is a well-known penetration testing framework that also allows you to deter potential cyber attacks by simulating them. This tool is compatible with all three popular operating systems, namely, Linux, Windows, and macOS.
- Type: Vulnerability Scanner Tool for Mobile Platforms and Windows OS
- Companies That Use MobSF: Individual Penetration Testers and App Developers
- MobSF Cost and Availability: Free and Open Source
MobSF, or Mobile Security Framework, is a penetration tester tool that performs dynamic and static analysis to identify Android, iOS, and Windows OS vulnerabilities. It provides automated penetration testing, malware analysis, and system security assessment features for app security.
- Type: Database Exploit and Testing Tool
- Companies That Use SQLmap: Individual Database Engineers and Developers
- SQLmap Cost and Availability: Free and Open Source
SQLmap is a database-specific pen testing tool with features for detecting flaws in SQL injection code and database server vulnerabilities. It works with various databases, including IBM DB2, Microsoft SQL Server, MySQL, PostgreSQL, and Oracle.
You need to understand relational databases and SQL along with penetration testing to use this tool, as it is aimed at more advanced users. SQLmap will help you automate database fingerprinting and password cracking processes.
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- Type: Network Protocol Analysis and Vulnerability Scanning Tool
- Companies That Use Wireshark: AT&T, Samsung Electronics, Boeing
- Wireshark Cost and Availability: Free and Open Source
Wireshark is a popular pen testing tool used for network protocol analysis and vulnerability scanning purposes. It offers tons of pen testing features, including deep protocol inspection, offline analysis, VoIP analysis, and sensitive data interception. The tool can be used across multiple OS and platforms, including Windows, Linux, macOS, Solaris, NetBSD, and FreeBSD.
Why Penetration Tester Tools Are Important
Penetration tester tools are important for keeping online data secure. Mastering these tools can also lead to professional growth and a high salary. According to ZipRecruiter, the average salary for a senior penetration tester is $139,965. Learning to use popular penetration testing tools increases your candidacy in the cyber security and information security industry.
You can advance your career into directorial, managerial, and presidential roles across the security department. You can also begin a career that allows you to work in various lucrative fields such as data science, network security, business, and healthcare.
Penetration Tester Tools FAQ
Penetration tester tools can enhance security for web pages, networks, mobile applications, database servers, WiFi networks, and operating systems, depending on the platform and tools. They perform vulnerability scanning, code debugging, password cracking, and system monitoring.
Some of the popular penetration tester tools include SQLmap, Linux Exploit Suggester, Wireshark, John The Ripper, Burp Suite, and ApkTool. Ensure you choose the tool that is specific to your cyber security and information security career.
Several professionals across the database management, cyber security, software engineering, and information security sectors use penetration tester tools. If you are interested in becoming a cyber security analyst, database engineer, software developer, mobile application engineer, ethical hacker, or cyber security engineer, you must learn how to use pen testing tools.
You can learn penetration testing by signing up for online penetration testing courses and penetration testing bootcamps. To master the subject, you can also enroll in a four-year cyber security or information security undergraduate degree program focused on penetration testing. If you lack experience with programming languages, Enki and CodeHub are some of the best coding apps to learn to code.
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