The red team and blue team are meant to shield systems against cyber attacks. A red team comprises different security professionals who help in overcoming cybersecurity breaches. They are primarily constituted by independent ethical hackers who objectively evaluate system security.
They utilize several techniques to discern people’s weaknesses, methods, and technology to obtain unapproved access to assets. These simulation attacks help them in determining strengthening plans for the organization’s security posture.
Red teaming spends more time devising an attack than actually performing it. They use several ways to gain access to a network. For example, social engineering attacks depend on surveys and research to deliver the targeted spear-phishing campaigns.
Similarly, before conducting a penetration test, packet sniffers and protocol analyzers are employed to scan the network and garner information regarding the system to the fullest possible extent.
Red teaming unearths operating systems used by Windows, macOS, or Linux. They also identify the make and model of networking equipment such as servers, firewalls, switches, routers, access points, computers, etc. They also decipher physical controls like doors, locks, cameras, and security personnel.
It is essential to learn more about which ports are open/closed on a firewall to enable/ block peculiar traffic. After collecting sufficient information regarding the system, the red team composes a plan of action aimed at the accumulated data’s vulnerabilities.
Red teams use a variety of tools to identify vulnerabilities and weaknesses and eliminate them. They use all means essential for engagement to break into one’s system contingent on the vulnerability; they may use malware to contaminate hosts or even circumvent physical security controls by cloning access cards.
Red team examples
The most prominent examples of red teaming are penetration testing, called ethical hacking, where the tester attempts to enter a system using software tools. For example, john the ripper is a password cracking program. It is designed to detect the encryption type used and then bypass it.
Social engineering occurs when the red team tries to persuade or deceive staff members into revealing their credentials or enabling access to restricted. Phishing refers to sending original emails that lure members to follow through and take peculiar actions like logging into the hacker’s website and entering credentials.
Intercepting communication software tools like packet sniffer and a protocol analyzer can map a network or read messages sent in cleartext. The rationale is to obtain knowledge of the system.
Blue teams comprise proficient security members who possess a comprehensive view of their organization. They are responsible for protecting the organization’s critical assets against any possible perils.
The blue team is mindful of the business’s objectives plus the organization’s security structure. They are tasked to fortify the castle walls to evade intruders. The blue team commences the process by gathering documents and data that need protection.
They perform a risk assessment. Subsequently, they tighten up the security access system by placing stronger passwords and educating them to confirm that they conform to the security guidelines.
They also install several monitoring tools on the systems enabling information concerning access to the systems to be logged and monitored for abnormal activity. Blue teams perform regular checks on the system.
For example, DNS audits internal or external network vulnerability scans and captures sample network traffic for analysis. They have to establish security measures around the critical assets of an organization.
They commence their defensive play by recognizing the crucial resources. They then document the importance of these assets to the business and what impact their inadequacy makes.
Subsequently, blue teams conduct risk assessments to detect menaces against individual assets and the deficiencies these threats can overwork.
Assessing the risk and prioritizing it helps the team infer an action plan to execute controls that lower the consequence and probability of threats materializing against assets. It is significant to include senior management at this point because only they can decide whether to endure a risk or implement mitigating controls against it.
The control selection is contingent on cost-benefit analysis to ascertain security controls deliver maximum value to the business. For example, A blue team may recognize that its network is exposed to a distributed denial-of-service attack.
This will dwindle the network’s availability to genuine users by sending half-done traffic requests to a server. In case of a loss, the team calculates the loss. The blue might conclude that installing an intrusion detection and prevention system minimizes the risk of DDOS attacks.
Despite their differences, the blue team and red team are aimed at protecting systems.