TOTAL: Ethical Hacking & CompTIA PenTest+ + 2 FREE Tests.
4.4 (707 ratings)
Course Ratings are calculated from individual students’ ratings and a variety of other signals, like age of rating and reliability, to ensure that they reflect course quality fairly and accurately.
7,536 students enrolled

TOTAL: Ethical Hacking & CompTIA PenTest+ + 2 FREE Tests.

From Mike Meyers & Total Seminars: Michael Solomon on ethical hacking & high-level penetration testing. Hack like a pro.
4.4 (707 ratings)
Course Ratings are calculated from individual students’ ratings and a variety of other signals, like age of rating and reliability, to ensure that they reflect course quality fairly and accurately.
7,536 students enrolled
Last updated 7/2020
English [Auto], Italian [Auto], 2 more
  • Polish [Auto]
  • Romanian [Auto]
Current price: $135.99 Original price: $194.99 Discount: 30% off
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This course includes
  • 11 hours on-demand video
  • 8 downloadable resources
  • 2 Practice Tests
  • Full lifetime access
  • Access on mobile and TV
  • Certificate of Completion
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What you'll learn
  • Includes 2 Bonus Practice Exams. We have added a CompTIA PenTest+ Practice Test and a Certified Ethical Hacker CEH Practice Test.
  • How to plan and scope a penetration test as a contracted pen tester for a client (as an ethical hacker, you’ll be the good guy and get paid to hack networks!)
  • How to work within a virtual environment to practice your pen testing skills, including using Oracle VM manager, Kali Linux, Metasploitable, and DVWA
  • Where to find vulnerabilities and how to penetrate a network in order to run exploits, then how to report those vulnerabilities to the client for remediation
  • How to gather intel on a network by scanning and enumerating (finding) targets, then searching out the weak points on those targets
  • How to conduct social engineering attacks, exploit network-based vulnerabilities, and intercept traffic via man-in-the-middle (MITM) attacks on wired and wireless network
  • How to use pen testing tools like Nmap, Nessus, Nslookup, John the Ripper, Immunity Debugger, Aircrack-NG, Wireshark, and many more
  • How to write reports, explain post-delivery activities, and recommend remediation strategies to your client
  • There are no requirements to take this course, nor are there any requirements to sit for the CompTIA PenTest+ exam, however, basic familiarity with networks and network security is suggested
  • It’s recommended to be familiar with the information in the CompTIA Network+ and Security+ exams
  • Although this course is a CompTIA PenTest+ exam prep, it’s also designed for a broader audience, so those without much network security knowledge can still gain valuable information on pen testing and ethical hacking

Mike Meyers and the Total Seminars Team, your source for best-selling cybersecurity courses, brings you this ethical hacking and penetration testing course with your instructor Michael Solomon, Ph.D., CISSP, PMP, CISM.

This is NOT a boring voice over PowerPoint course. Michael speaks to you and presents the material in an engaging interactive style that will keep you interested and make it easier to understand. Check out the free sample lectures and you will see the difference.

We've added 2 bonus Practice Tests. One practice test covers the EC-Council Certified Ethical Hacker CEH certification exam. The other practice test covers the CompTIA PenTest+ certification exam. Test your readiness to pass either of these industry ethical hacking certification exams.

With 30+ years of experience in security, privacy, blockchain, and data science, and an energetic presentation style, Michael takes his proficiency in network penetration testing and consolidates it into this informative and engaging course.


Did you know penetration testers' average salary is $71,929?* And this career is in one of the fastest-growing job markets**.

Whether you're looking to pass the CompTIA PenTest+ certification exam, take your next step in the CompTIA Cybersecurity Pathway***, or you're just looking to learn some awesome ethical hacking skills, you’re in the right place.

Keep in mind there's much more to being an ethical hacker than what's covered here, including how to secure a network, however this course focuses on how to be a pen tester. A pen tester plans and scopes a pen test engagement with a client, finds vulnerabilities, exploits them to get into a network, then reports on those findings to the client.

This course shows you how to:

  • Use the tools you’ll need to scan networks, crack passwords, analyze and intercept traffic, discover code vulnerabilities, and compromise resources

  • Recognize vulnerabilities within a system, run exploits, and suggest solutions to a client to remediate the weak points

  • Work within a virtual environment to practice your pen testing skills, including using Oracle VM manager, Kali Linux, Metasploitable, and DVWA

  • Scope, plan, and execute a pen test engagement from start to finish


PenTest+ Exam Domain  -  Percentage of Exam

1.0 Planning and Scoping  -  15%

  • Explain the importance of planning for an engagement

  • Explain key legal concepts

  • Explain the importance of scoping an engagement properly

  • Explain the key aspects of compliance-based assessments

2.0 Information Gathering and Vulnerability Identification  -  22%

  • Given a scenario, conduct information gathering using appropriate techniques

  • Given a scenario, perform a vulnerability scan

  • Given a scenario, analyze vulnerability scan results

  • Explain the process of leveraging information to prepare for exploitation

  • Explain weaknesses related to specialized systems

3.0 Attacks and Exploits  -  30%

  • Compare and contrast social engineering attacks

  • Given a scenario, exploit network-based vulnerabilities

  • Given a scenario, exploit wireless and RF-based vulnerabilities

  • Given a scenario, exploit application-based vulnerabilities

  • Given a scenario, exploit local host vulnerabilities

  • Summarize physical security attacks related to facilities

  • Given a scenario, perform post-exploitation techniques

4.0 Penetration Testing Tools  -  17%

  • Given a scenario, use Nmap to conduct information gathering exercises

  • Compare and contrast various use cases of tools

  • Given a scenario, analyze tool output or data related to a penetration test

  • Given a scenario, analyze a basic script (limited to Bash, Python, Ruby, and PowerShell)

5.0 Reporting and Communication  -  16%

  • Given a scenario, use report writing and handling best practices

  • Explain post-report delivery activities

  • Given a scenario, recommend mitigation strategies for discovered vulnerabilities

  • Explain the importance of communication during the penetration testing process 


Exam code: PT0-001

Max. 85 questions (performance-based and multiple choice)

Length of exam: 165 minutes

Passing score: 750 (on a scale of 100-900)

Exam voucher cost: $349

Recommended experience: Network+, Security+ or equivalent knowledge, minimum 3-4 years hands-on information security or related experience (no required prerequisites to sit for the PenTest+ exam)


Buy an exam voucher (get your discount voucher at Total Seminars' website), schedule your exam on the Pearson VUE website, then take the exam at a qualifying Pearson VUE testing center


CompTIA's PenTest+ is the only penetration testing exam taken at a Pearson VUE testing center with both hands-on, performance-based questions and multiple-choice, to ensure each candidate possesses the skills, knowledge, and ability to perform tasks on systems****

Penetration testing and information security is one of the fastest-growing job category according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. It predicts that roles requiring these skills will see 28 percent overall growth by 2026.**


The CompTIA PenTest+ is your quickest and most cost-effective route to a pen testing certification

The PenTest+ includes the latest mobile and cloud penetration testing skills, including IoT, as well as traditional desktop & server systems (CEH covers only traditional desktop & server systems)

The PenTest+ better matches employer needs by covering not just technical topics, but also business processes, project flow, best practices, and professionalism in pen testing (CEH is strictly technical)

The PenTest+ exam voucher costs $349 (compared to the CEH $1150 non-member plus application fee)****

Take a look at these student reviews:

★★★★★ “This is an excellent course!! Even in earlier chapters, the instructor gets you going on sample exercises to chop up the theoretical content a little, which always helps. With a course like this, hands-on is everything. I also appreciate that the theoretical parts are NOT TOO LONG AT ONCE!! Total Seminars did a fantastic job of breaking the content up in just the right places. LOVE this course!”Chris N

★★★★★ “Amazing. Well Explained. Detail description for all the fundamental terms.” – Nisarg T

★★★★★ “Instruction was excellent. Including notes as resources was a big help! I reviewed the notes while watching the videos and I think that is really going to help me with information retention. The instructor used real-world examples to demonstrate points. Overall, I feel confident I can pass the test after studying the materials and doing the exercises the instructor emphasizes. The instructor also highlighted several key points to study for the exam for maximum preparation.” - Tim W

★★★★★ “This is what I was hoping for and it's much more upbeat than most of the lulling video series' I've seen before.” – John G

★★★★★ “This course covers everything in the approved CompTIA PenTest+ certification test. The presenter knows his stuff, has done real work pentests and does a good job of showing off the tools you'll be quizzed on and how to manipulate and analyze the results. Highly recommend this for anyone with Security+ that is looking to specialize as a pentester. Great place to start!” – Casey D

★★★★★ “Very well thought out course. The instructor is very knowledgeable, and the course is laid out in a great way! A lot of time was put into this and it shows!” – Luke P

*www.cyberdegrees. org

**US Bureau of Labor Statistics, www.bls. gov

***Check out the PenTest+ Certification Guide.pdf resource in the first section

****www.comptia. org

Who this course is for:
  • Anyone interested in ethical hacking, pen testing, vulnerability testing, and network security
  • Anyone looking to prepare for the CompTIA PenTest+ (PT0-001) exam
  • Security Analysts, Network Security Ops, Application Security Vulnerability Analysts
Course content
Expand all 67 lectures 10:44:51
+ Planning and Scoping
11 lectures 01:55:18

Pen tests are large projects and must be planned for accordingly, or else it’s easy for them to get out of scope and become more work than you initially thought. Understand the importance of planning and scoping an engagement using strategy, project management skills, and pen testing resources. 

Preview 08:54

Pen tests are risky at best and can violate security rules or even legislation at worst. Learn how to establish rules of engagement with your client including understanding who they are, what the target limits are, what the test scope is, and who to communicate with should something go awry during one of your attacks. 

Rules of Engagement

There are important factors to consider before you even begin your first attack. Planning out and discussing the resources, requirements, and budget with the client is key to a successful engagement. You need to consider who will provide the resources, like the hardware and software, since each of these costs money. Establish the budget from the beginning and assign a value to every part of the test, including the cost of your time. 

Resources and Budget

A pen test is more than just a simple test; it’s a large-scale engagement. Before you begin, you need to explain to your client what the impact of the tests might be. If they have any constraints, such as not attacking a production server, they should make you aware of them since the result could be catastrophic for the business if it went down during one of your attacks.

Preview 05:17

It’s important to know what resources you can use to be able to successfully attack your targets. This is where software development tools come in handy, since they can shed light on the inner workings of an application, giving you the opportunity to exploit a possible vulnerability. Learn about WSDLs, WADLs, SOAP project files, SDK, swagger, and XSD documentation, sample application requests, and the importance of network architectural diagrams.

Support Resources

Many activities in a pen test are technically against the rules and policies, or even illegal. You need to make sure you’re covered legally so you don’t get in trouble for doing something during an attack that your client isn’t aware of. This video covers the basics of SOWs, MSAs, and NDAs, the differences between environments, nations, cultures, and corporations, and getting written permission to perform the tests so you don’t get in to trouble later.  

Legal Groundwork

Once you’ve discussed high-level planning with your client and finished the legal documentation, you’ll need to drill down to the specifics of what you’re going to do. Your client can help you decide the type of assessment you’ll be doing (goals-based, objectives-based, compliance-based, etc.) and any special scoping considerations, such as 3rd-party vendors who might be involved. The next step after that will be to select the targets to attack based on what the client wants tested. 

Scope Considerations

This video walks you through how to create a lab environment where you can practice your pen testing skills. Learn how to set up the virtual machine manager Oracle VirtualBox and install virtual machines within it including the toolkit of all toolkits, Kali Linux, and two intentionally vulnerable VMs where you can practice attacking a system, called Damn Vulnerable Web App (DVWA) and Metasploitable. 

Lab Environment Setup

A black-box pen tester is someone who knows nothing going into the engagement, and a white-box pen tester is more like a company insider who has a certain amount of knowledge before they begin. Whichever way you plan to play the role, these are some of the considerations you’ll need to figure out before you begin your pen testing. Are you whitelisted or blacklisted? Do you know the layers of security controls your client has? How invasive will the test be? Learn the nuances of how to strategize your engagement and prepare the client for the possible risks involved.

Project Strategy and Risk

As you continue to plan out your pen test, you’ll need to lock in the schedule and make sure you won’t run into scope creep. You’ll also want to hone in on what type of attacker you are and what your motivations are for attacking. Are you an advanced persistent threat with lots of resources? Or perhaps a script kiddie, hacktivist, or an insider threat? With all this information, you can build your threat model, a valuable map for what assets you’re going to use and what specific targets you will be attacking that will help guide you through the next steps in your pen test.

Scope Vulnerabilities

Compliance-based assessments are a bit different than any other type in that standards and regulations outside the client’s control can change how a pen test must be conducted. Learn how to recognize some of these constraints and how to incorporate them into your pen test plan.

Compliance-Based Assessments
Planning and Scoping Quiz
9 questions
+ Surveying the Target
13 lectures 02:23:37

It’s important to survey the environment and gather all the correct information to determine where any vulnerabilities might lie. By using techniques such as scanning and enumeration, you’ll know exactly where the weak points are on a network and how to classify them in order to launch the appropriate attacks.  

Scanning and Enumeration

Now that you know what surveying and enumeration are, it’s time to put that knowledge into action. Running Metasploitable on a virtual box, you will learn how to use, Nmap, ping sweep scan, ARP Scan, and whois lookup to determine which targets are the easiest to get to.   

Scanning Demo

If you don’t get a response from a host after an initial scan, you can use additional tools to find out more information. Learn how to use packet crafting to create specific network packets to gather or carry out attacks. Also use packet inspection, fingerprinting, cryptography, and eavesdropping to gather information and determine what traffic is being sent. 

Packet Investigation

Many functions of a pen test are only as good as the tools you have available to you. In conjunction with Metasploitable, learn how to use Wireshark, a free and useful application for information gathering and packet inspection, to break down exactly what’s happening inside each packet sent through the network. 

Packet Inspection Demo

Sometimes, to go forward, you must go backward. Understand how you can use code decompiling and debugging to work backwards and learn a program’s secrets and weaknesses to determine the best way to exploit them. Learn the resources you can use to dig into web application code and how that information can benefit you when planning your attacks.

Application and Open-Source Resources

There is no shortage of known vulnerabilities on any computing devices, but how do you match known vulnerabilities with your target's weaknesses? By applying a structured approach, you can find out if specific vulnerabilities exist on a target. Learn about discovery scans, full scans, port scans, stealth scans, and compliance scans.

Vulnerability Scanning

Now that you know the various methods for testing vulnerabilities, see exactly how to use stealth scanning, port scanning, OS fingerprinting, and OpenVas to assess vulnerabilities.  

Vulnerability Scanning Demo

There are some very important considerations to take into account when planning an attack. Learn the importance of finding out whether you’re attacking a physical machine, virtual machine, or container and what the best analysis tool is to use. Learn how to map targets to business value so you can focus on what vulnerability will hurt the business the worst. 

Target Considerations

Being fast is normally great, but as a pen tester fast can mean creating a lot of network traffic, unintentionally alerting your target that something is happening. When you need to fly under the radar, use Nmap (along with helpful cheat sheet), to help you stealthily apply your vulnerability scans so there’s less chance of being detected. 

Nmap Timing and Performance Options

You’ve ranked your assets, vulnerabilities, and exploits, now it’s time to make a priorities list and leverage that information to plan your penetration tests. Use powerful Nmap scripts to map those vulnerabilities to potential exploits. 

Prioritization of Vulnerabilities

There are many pen testing techniques and often they are used together to successfully attack a target. Learn some of the more common attack techniques such as exploit modification, exploit chaining, social engineering, credential brute forcing, and enlightened attacks. 

Common Attack Techniques

This video walks you through the process of a brute force attack. With a list of usernames and passwords, and an ip address and a port number, you will see how the Hydra tool can help you become an authorized user. 

Credential Attacks

A lot of the targets you’ve learned about so far are geared towards servers, but there are specialized systems that have unique weaknesses. Learn about those systems and how to exploit their vulnerabilities. 

Weaknesses in Specialized Systems
Surveying the Target
9 questions
+ Select Your Attack Vector
21 lectures 03:13:03

Social engineering takes advantages of one of the greatest vulnerabilities of a client – the people who work there. As a pen tester, one of the easiest ways to gain access is by tricking authorized users into giving up sensitive information. Learn about the basics of phishing, including spear phishing, SMS phishing and whaling. 

Remote Social Engineering

Now that you understand what social engineering attacks are, learn how to use Kali Linux to launch a mass email spear phishing attack with a few simple commands. 

Spear Phishing Demo

In-person social engineering attacks are usually successful because people often want to be helpful and will rarely say “no” to someone face-to-face. These include elicitation, interrogation, impersonation, shoulder surfing, and USB key drops. It’s also important to include multiple elements of what motivates people to give up sensitive information such as authority, scarcity, social proof, urgency, likeness, and fear. 

In-Person Social Engineering

This video covers a high-level overview of the various network-based protocols and their vulnerabilities. These include NETBIOS Name Service (NBNS), LLMNR (Link-Local Multicast Name Resolution), DNS and ARP poisoning, SMB (Server Message Block), SNMP (Simple Network Management Protocol), SMTP (Simple Mail Transport Protocol), and FTP (File Transfer Protocol).  

Network-Based Exploits

In this video, learn how to launch an FTP attack in Kali Linux. You’ll start by using the vulscan option in nmap to identify vulnerabilities within specific ports and IP addresses. Then explore the databases in the Metasploitable Framework to find the specific exploit you’ll want to use. Finally, you’ll launch the Metasploitable Framework Console, type in a few commands, and let Kali execute the exploit for you as you sit back and watch the pen testing magic happen. 

FTP Exploit Demo

You don’t have to be on the client or the server side to exploit a target. Man-in-the-middle attacks put the attacker in between the communication as a proxy to steal the network packets as they’re passed back and forth. These include DNS cache poisoning, ARP spoofing, pass the hash, replay, relay, SSL stripping, downgrading, DoS, NAC bypass, and VLAN hopping. 

Man-in-the-middle Exploits

Because wireless communication uses broadcast technology, essentially sending your data packets in every direction for anyone to grab, it makes it a great target for attackers. Learn how to use tools like Aircrack-ng and Wireshark to sniff and grab packets. Also understand the different types of attacks available to you, such as evil twin, deauthentication, fragmentation, credential harvesting, exploiting WPS weaknesses, Bluejacking, Bluesnarfing, RFID cloning, jamming, and repeating. 

Wireless Exploits

Applications are great targets to attack, especially if you’re trying to disrupt communication with DoS, or if you’re looking to exfiltrate or destroy data. This video covers injection attacks, which is essentially inserting additional data beyond what the application is expecting to make it give you some information or perform some action for you. These include SQL, HTML, command, and code injection attacks. 

Application Exploits, Part 1

As a pen tester, you can get web apps to give you all kinds of information by leveraging mistakes developers make during the development phase. After configuring your DVWA to make sure it’s extra vulnerable, you’ll learn how to type commands into a seemingly benign data form box to make the web app respond back with extra database information, and even run a script to make a dialogue box appear. 

SQL Injection Demo

The beauty of applications is they already have access to databases, all you have to do is figure out how to exploit the vulnerabilities to get to that information. This video covers authentication attacks such as credential brute forcing, session hijacking, redirecting, as well as exploiting default or weak credentials and Kerberos tickets. It also covers authorization attacks such as parameter pollution and insecure direct object reference. 

Application Exploits, Part 2

In this final episode describing application exploits, you’ll learn about another application injection attacks called cross-site scripting (XSS) which attacks the server, and its similar cousin, cross-site request forgery (XSRF/CSRF) that attacks the user. You’ll also discover how to launch passive attacks just by exploiting security misconfigurations, including directory traversal errors, cookie manipulation, and file inclusion. 

Application Exploits, Part 3

Pen testing is often trying one thing, tweaking it, and trying again. Back in our lab environment, you’ll see a cross-site scripting (XSS) attack carried out using Kali Linux and the Damn Vulnerable Web App (DVWA).  

Cross-Site Scripting Demo

There’s more to pen testing than exploits and vulnerabilities, a good pen tester has a broad knowledge base of computer systems as well. Part of that is a general understanding of how applications are coded. When developers write applications, they may use practices that make it easier for them to write code, but also make the application unsecure. In this episode, you will learn what some of those common unsecure code practices are.

Code Vulnerabilities

All operating systems have vulnerabilities, but with potentially thousands of vulnerabilities on a local host, how can you find out what they are? Walk through one of the most commonly used vulnerability databases called the CVE (Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures). This database will show you vulnerabilities for each operating system that you can use to attack your particular target.

Local Host Vulnerabilities

In order to access systems and files in Linux, you need privileges. One way to do that is to leverage Linux’s SUID (Set User ID) and SGUID (Set Group ID) capabilities. In this episode, you’ll find out ways to escalate your privilege using various executables. 

Privilege Escalation (Linux)

Windows OS also has issue of privilege escalation. As a pen tester, you can use this to your advantage by finding ways to access credentials stored in Cpassword, LDAP, LSASS, and SAM databases, among others. You can also take exploit Kerberos tickets by Kerberoasting, or force malicious DLL modules to load with DLL hijacking. 

Privilege Escalation (Windows)

There are a few other Windows OS vulnerabilities you can exploit to gain higher levels of privileges. In this video, you’ll learn about unquoted services paths and writable services in Windows Services. You’ll also learn the weaknesses of applications as well as another tricky way to access credentials: using a keylogger.

Misc. Privilege Escalation

Continuing the conversation on possible vulnerabilities you can exploit as a pen tester, you’ll learn about how often default accounts are rarely changed or disabled, making them a perfect target to attack. Yet another way to gain access is to escape sandbox environments such as VMs and containers. Finally, you’ll learn about physical device security such as cold boot attacks, JTAG debuggers, and serial consoles. 

Misc. Local Host Vulnerabilities

We’ve explored many of the technical ways to infiltrate a system through the network or directly at the host level. Physical security, on the other hand, involves gaining access to the actual physical location and the data within it by tailgating, fence jumping, dumpster diving, lock picking, or bypassing locks. 

Physical Security

You’ve planned your engagement, you’ve chosen your targets and exploits, and you’ve successfully gained access. Now what? You’ll want to make it easier to get back in, but also figure out how to move laterally throughout the network. There are a number of OS features that can make lateral movement possible, including many remote access protocols. Learn about these features, and see two of them demonstrated: Telnet and SSH.

Post-Exploitation Techniques

Once you gain access to a system, you’re going to want to stick around without alerting anyone that you’re there. This is what it means to be persistent as a pen tester. You’ll also want to be able to make it easy to move around within the system, and to get back in. There are many ways to accomplish this, and in this video, you’ll learn about running scheduled jobs or daemons, creating back doors for easy access using trojans, or even creating a user with higher privileges. In order to remain undetected, it’s also vitally important to cover your tracks. 

Persistence and Stealth
Selecting Your Attack Vector
12 questions
+ Selecting Pen Testing Tools
17 lectures 02:27:28

As a pen tester, the nmap command will be one of your greatest tools. It is a network mapper with numerous options. Learn how to detect the operating system of a machine, conduct stealthy scans, determine the service and version information, enumerate targets, and output the scan results into several different file formats. 

Nmap Scoping & Output Options

There are a number of tools you’ll need as a pen tester and this episode gives you a high-level overview of the various categories and popular tools within each, including reconnaissance, enumeration, vulnerability testing, credential attacks, persistence, evasion, and examining software. 

Pen Testing Toolbox

In this episode, you’ll explore the interface and tools included in Kali Linux, and resources to help you learn how to use this valuable tool in more depth. 

Using Kali Linux

Now that you’ve had a quick overview of the tools you’ll need as a pen tester, we’ll take a deeper look into each category and explore what each tool does. In this episode, we discuss vulnerability scanning and credential cracking tools, including Nikto, OpenVAS, SQLmap, Nessus, Medusa, Hydra, Patator, W3AF, Hashcat, John the Ripper, Cain and Abel, Cewl, Mimikatz, and Dirbuster. You’ll also see a demonstration of the password cracker, John the Ripper. 

Scanners & Credential Tools

Next in our exploration of the pen tester’s toolbox are code cracking tools, including debuggers such as OLLYDBG, Immunity Debugger, GDB, WinDBG, and IDA, as well as software assurance tools such as Findsecbugs, Peach, AFL, SonarQube, and YASCA. 

Code-Cracking Tools

OSINT (Open-Source Intelligence) is any freely available information and can be a gold mine for pen testers. These tools include Whois, Nslookup, Foca, Theharvester, Shodan, Maltego, Recon-NG, and Censys. You’ll also get to see a demonstration of how to use Whois and Nslookup. 

Open-Source Research Tools

As a pen tester, you’ll need to know how to handle wireless networks and devices. Tools such as Aircrack-NG, Kismet, and WiFite can help with monitoring, sniffing, and detecting. It’s also a good idea to know how to inject yourself between a client and server as a proxy, and tools such as OWASP ZAP and Burp Suite can help with this. You’ll also see a demonstration of how to set up a simple proxy connection using Burp Suite. 

Wireless and Web Pen Testing Tools

Your main goal as a pen tester is to compromise resources and, unless you’re physically at the location where you’re attacking a target, that will need to be done remotely. You’ll need to become very familiar with tools such as SSH, Netcat/nc, Ncat, and Proxychains. This episode will also help explain bind shells and reverse shells and demonstrate how to set up each of them.  

Remote Access Tools

Our world is becoming more mobile. As a result, you’ll need to incorporate tools that work for mobile devices as well as standard networks. In this episode, you’ll learn about two network analyzing tools you should have at your disposal, Wireshark and Hping. You’ll also learn about the mobile tools Drozer, APKX, and APKX Studio. 

Analyzers and Mobile Pen Testing Tools

It’s convenient to have tools that can perform multiple jobs, but sometimes you need very specialized tools to do something specific. As we wrap up this chapter, you’ll learn about some of those specialized tools, such as Powersploit, Responder, Impacket, Empire, Metasploit framework, and Searchsploit. You’ll also see a quick demo of the Searchsploit tool. 

This is by no means an exhaustive list, new tools come out often, so it’s important that you stay up to date as you continue to pen test.  

Other Pen Testing Tools

Pen testing can be mundane and tedious work, which can cause people to lose track and make mistakes. Scripting helps document the process while automating the workflow and cutting down on errors. In this episode, you’ll learn about four different scripting programs: Bash (Bourne Again Shell), PowerShell, Ruby, and Python. You will also be familiarized with: variables, substitutions, common operations, logic, basic I/O, Error handling, arrays, and encoding/decoding. 

Using Scripting in Pen Testing

Now that you know what Bash, PowerShell, Ruby, and Python is, it’s time to get a basic understanding of Bash. By learning what clues to look for you’ll be able to identify a Bash shell simply by looking at syntax. Each scripting program uses different syntax for things like commenting, variables, and substitutions and by having basic knowledge of this scripting, you’ll know how to create and identify a Bash script. 

Bash Scripting Basics

We’ve taught you the basics of Bash, now it’s time to take a more in-depth view, so you can feel comfortable scripting in Bash. Once you know how to do basic scripting, the production process will become faster and more reliable. In this episode, you’ll learn about how to make a basic port scanning script using Bash. 

Bash Scripting Techniques

You’ve just learned how to do a port scan using Bash scripting, now you’ll see how it works in PowerShell. Even though it’s somewhat the same functionality, it looks and acts a little differently. After watching this demo, you’ll have a basic understanding of port scanning using PowerShell. 

PowerShell Scripts

You’ve seen Bash and PowerShell at work, now let's look at Ruby. Ruby is different because it’s much more than a scripting environment, it’s a full-blown high-level language. But the danger in that, is there is a lot of functionality you could get lost in, so it’s important to know and concentrate on the functions that you’ll need. It’s also important to remember, the goal is not to become a Ruby developer, it’s to be able to understand what a Ruby script developer might be trying to do. 

Ruby Scripts

It’s time to wrap up our summary of scripting languages and last on our list is Python. Like Ruby, Python is high-level, multipurpose language. As you’ve seen in previous episodes, scripting is a great way to automate your workflow and with Python there are an abundant number of resources that make it easy to learn, easy to use, and there are tremendous amounts of pre-written code. In this episode we continue in our environment and you’ll see how Python handles port scanning and how it’s similar to the three other scripting languages you’ve learned about. By now you should be able to recognize syntax from all the four basic languages. 

Python Scripts

We’ve primarily been focusing on the similarities of Bash, PowerShell, Ruby, and Python by looking at how they handle a port scanning script. In this last episode of the chapter, you’ll see some specific differences between each of the four environments, a side-by-side comparison of the different script languages and play a simple game to see if you can quickly recognize each of the four scripting languages based on syntax.  

Scripting Languages Comparison
Selecting Pen Testing Tools
10 questions
+ Reporting and Communication
4 lectures 36:45

You’ve run all your exploits and tests and now you have a list of potential vulnerabilities, but what good is that if you can’t clearly communicate what they are to the appropriate parties? For your pen test to be effective, you must be able to communicate your findings and more importantly your recommendations. In this episode you’ll learn about some best practices when writing your report; sample report resources and some tips for writing an effective report.  Remember your report is your primary deliverable, so you’ll want to make sure it’s right. 

Writing Reports

Ok, your report is written, you’ve submitted it to the proper parties, you’re all done, right? Not at all, you still have more work to do. You may have to present the report, clean up any changes you made, remove shells, tester-created credentials, tools, and clean up any history. Once all of that is done, you’ll need to formally cease the project and get official acceptance of the deliverable by the client. In this episode you will learn about how you should proceed with all these steps as well as how you can take what you learned to become an even better pen tester.   

Post-Report Activities

Finding the problems in a system is important, but arguably the most important step is the call-to-action. In this episode you’ll learn about mitigation strategies, so your clients can clearly understand how to fix the problems you found. You’ll also learn how to group your mitigation findings in to people changes, process changes and technology changes, to make it easier to understand by your clients. And learn about common findings that seem to pop-up often in pen tests; shared local admin credentials, weak password complexity, plain text passwords, no multifactor authentication, SQL injection, unnecessary open services.   

Mitigation Strategies

While running pen tests you are accessing sensitive material and conducting very invasive tests, so what happens if you run into a conflict during your pen test or something doesn’t go as planned? Should any abnormalities take place, communication is key factor in keeping your pen test in scope and on target. In many cases, the success of your pen test rests on how well you communicate, internally within your team and externally to your clients. Learn about the importance of identifying clear authority figures, key contacts, conflict resolution, technical assistance and escalation process’. If you have a clear understanding of these communication principles, you can make sure your client is always comfortable with what you are doing.     

Reporting and Communication
5 questions
+ Practice Tests
0 lectures 00:00

Test your Penetration Testing skills and prepare for the CompTIA PenTest+ exam.

CompTIA PenTest+ Practice Test
50 questions

Test your Certified Ethical Hacking skills and prepare for the CEH exam.

Certified Ethical Hacker, CEH Practice Test
50 questions