Top Tools / September 20, 2021
StartupStash Team

The world's biggest online directory of resources and tools for startups and the most upvoted product on ProductHunt History.

28 Best Penetration Testing (Pentest) Tools

If you are curious about why penetration testing tools are important, you need to read this. Year after year, the acknowledged frequency of cyber attacks against companies and industries rises, resulting in increased financial damages from successful breaches.

Continuous vulnerability assessments and penetration testing are more crucial than ever for manufacturers and producers to detect vulnerabilities and ensure that cybersecurity controls are configured and functioning properly to avoid losses. While user testing tools are important, penetration testing tools are equally important.

We have curated this list of the 28 best penetration testing tools in this top tools list for you to choose from.


1. WireShark

Wireshark is probably the most popular network protocol analyzer on the planet. Wireshark network traffic capture can reveal which protocols and systems are active, as well as which accounts are the most active, allowing attackers to intercept sensitive data.

Key Features:

  • New protocols are constantly being added with several of them already tested successfully.

  • Capture in real time and analysis later.

  • Packet browser with three panes as a standard.

  • Multi-platform: It runs on Windows, Linux, macOS, Solaris, FreeBSD, NetBSD, and a variety of other operating systems.

  • A GUI or the TTY-mode TShark programme can be used to browse captured network data.

Cost:

This tool is available for free.


2. John the Ripper

John the Ripper, being an original password cracking tool, Its primarily aims to discover and reveal weak passwords on a specific system. John the Ripper is a pentesting tool that may be used for security as well as compliance.

John is well-known for its ability to quickly uncover weak passwords in a short amount of time.

Key Features:

  • Proactive password strength checking mechanism in John the Ripper is free and open source software.

  • It allows you to browse the documentation online.

  • Many more hash and encryption types are supported.

Cost:

This tool is available for free.


3. THC Hydra

THC Hydra is a password cracking programme with a difference.

Hydra is the only password pentesting programme that can simultaneously test several protocols and connections. If unlocked, this capability allows a penetration tester to crack several passwords on multiple systems at the same time without losing connection.

Key Features:

  • Support for multi-core processor computation

  • It is compatible with both Windows and Linux operating systems.

  • On all supported operating systems, a unified rainbow table file format is available.

  • Support for both graphical and command-line user interfaces

Cost:

This tool is available for free.


4. Aircrack-ng

Aircrack-ng is a wireless network security tool that includes everything you need to do a penetration test. Aircrack-ng performs four key activities that distinguish it as the best in its class: it monitors network packets, attacks via packet injection, tests WiFi capabilities, and cracks passwords.

Key Features:

  • Capture of packets and export of data to text files for processing by third-party software.

  • Packet injection attacks include replay attacks, deauthentication, and the creation of bogus access points, among other things.

  • Checking the capabilities of WiFi cards and drivers (capture and injection)

  • WEP and WPA PSK Cracking (WPA 1 and 2)

Cost:

This tool is available for free.


5. Metasploit

Metasploit began as an open-source project and has grown in popularity over time. Vulnerability scanning, listening, exploiting known vulnerabilities, evidence collecting, and project reporting are just a few of the pentesting activities that Metasploit can handle.

Key Features:

  • With over 1,500 exploits, it's the de facto standard for penetration testing.

  • Data from a network scan is imported.

  • Brute-forcing of credentials using an automated system.

  • Reports on initial penetration testing.

  • Attempting to brute force credentials manually.

  • Anti-virus solutions are evaded via dynamic payloads.

Cost:

14 day free trial. You are required to get in touch with them via their website to get information on pricing.


6. ZenMap

ZenMap is everything that a Pentester could ask for. This network security mapping application provides a rapid overview of any network's open ports. You can use NMAP commands to investigate the viability of specific network-level vulnerabilities. NMAP also offers a user-friendly graphical user interface called ZenMap, which is simple to use regardless of skill level. NMAP additionally includes a packet creation tool, a debugging tool, and a comparison tool for comparing scan results.

Key Features:

  • Results can be viewed in an interactive and graphical format.

  • It presents information about a single host or a whole scan in a user-friendly format.

  • It can even create a topological map of the networks that have been detected.

Cost:

This tool is available for free.


7. SQLMap

SQLMap is an open-source penetration testing application that can help you validate SQL injection problems in your database servers. This automated testing tool has a number of crucial features, such as fingerprinting of the database and engine detection.

Key Features:

  • Allows you to connect to the database directly without having to go via a SQL injection.

  • Support for dumping entire database tables or particular columns.

  • Users can also choose a character range from each column's entry.

  • Allows you to run arbitrary commands on the database server and obtain their normal output.

Cost:

This tool is available for free.


8. NetSparker

NetSparker can detect everything from cross-site scripting to SQL injection. This tool can be used on websites, web services, and web applications by developers. The system is capable of scanning upto 1000 web apps simultaneously.

With attack options, authentication, and URL rewrite rules, you may tailor your security scan.

Key Features:

  • With the innovative Proof-Based Scanning Technology, you can detect vulnerabilities with pinpoint accuracy.

  • There is only a small amount of setup necessary. URL rewrite rules and custom 404 error pages are detected automatically by the scanner.

  • REST APIs are in place to enable bug tracking systems services.

Cost:

You can contact them directly to receive a quote.


9. BeEF

BeEF enables a penetration tester using client-side attack vectors to examine the true security posture of a target environment. Unlike other security frameworks, BeEF assesses the scope of exploitation in the context of the one open door: the web browser, rather than the protected network perimeter and client system.

Key Features:

  • BeEF efficiently uses client-side attack vectors for assessment of current security posture.

  • BeEF has the ability to connect to one or more web browsers.

Cost:

This tool is available for free.


10. Acunetix

Acunetix is an automated penetration testing tool that may be used to finish a test. The tool can audit intricate management reports as well as compliance issues. The software can deal with a variety of network flaws. Even out-of-band vulnerabilities might be included by Acunetix.

Key Features:

  • Scans for all SQL Injection variations, XSS, and over 4500 other vulnerabilities

  • Over 1200 WordPress core, theme, and plugin vulnerabilities are detected.

  • Fast and Scalable - crawls several thousands of pages in a single pass.

Cost:

Requesting for a demo will reveal their pricing.


11. W3af

W3af online application attack and audit frameworks are designed to detect and exploit vulnerabilities in all types of web applications. For attack, audit, and discovery, three types of plugins are available. The software then sends these to the audit tool, which checks for security issues.

Key Features:

  • The framework offers web and proxy servers that are simple to integrate into your applications.

  • Bundled urllib2 in a thread-safe manner with a slew of additions (Keep-Alive, Gzip, Logging, and so on) that let you make specifically tailored HTTP requests at breakneck speed.

  • There is built-in support for multiple encodings and broken HTML tags.

Cost:

This tool is available for free.


12. Kali

Kali is an advanced penetration testing software that can be used only for Linux distribution. Many experts say that this is the greatest tool for both password snipping and injecting. To get the most out of it, you'll need knowledge of both TCP and IP protocols. Kali is an open-source project that offers tool listings, version tracking, and meta-packages.

Key Features:

  • With the addition of 64-bit functionality, brute-force password cracking is now possible.

  • LAN and WLAN hunting, assessment of vulnerability, password decrypting, and digital forensics tools pre-installed .

  • Backtrack interfaces with top tools in the market, like Metaspoilt and Wireshark.

Cost:

This tool is available for free.


13. Wapiti

Wapiti is a black box testing tool for application security. Web applications are subjected to black box testing to look for potential flaws. Web pages are examined and testing data is injected during the black box testing procedure to look for security flaws.

Key Features:

  • It allows you to limit the scan's scope.

  • In URLs, a parameter is automatically removed.

  • Cookies can be imported.

  • It has the ability to enable or disable SSL certificate verification.

Cost:

This tool is available for free.


14. Intruder

Intruder is a powerful vulnerability scanner that detects cybersecurity flaws in your digital estate, explains the consequences, and assists you in remediating them before a breach occurs. It's the ideal solution for helping you automate your penetration testing.

Key Features:

  • Scan results are automatically analysed and prioritised.

  • It's easy to set up and conduct your first scans thanks to the intuitive interface.

  • Proactive security monitoring for the most recent security flaws.

  • Connectors for AWS, Azure, and Google Cloud.

Cost:

Monthly packages start at $97.


15. Indusface

Indusface offers manual penetration testing as well as its built in automated web application vulnerability scanner, which discovers and reports vulnerabilities based on the OWASP top 10, as well as a website reputation check of links, malware, and defacement checks.

Key Features:

  • Single-page applications are scanned by Crawler.

  • The ability to pause and resume searches.

  • Scanner reports from both manual and automated scanners are displayed on the same dashboard.

Cost:

Packages start at $49 per year.


16. Dradis

Dradis is an open-source framework (web application) that aids in the management of data that can be shared among pen-test participants. The data gathered aids in understanding what has been done and what remains to be done.

Key Features:

  • Report generation is a simple process.

  • Attachment support is available.

  • Collaboration that is seamless.

  • Server plugins allow for integration with current systems and tools.

Cost:

Packages start at $79.


17. Intrusion Detection Software

Intrusion Detection Software is a tool that can hunt down nearly all types of potential threats. It delivers DSS (Decision Support System) and HIPAA compliance reporting. This programme can keep an eye on suspicious attacks and behaviour in real time.

Key Features:

  • Log collecting and normalisation in one location

  • Threat detection and response that is automated

  • Tools for reporting on compliance that are integrated

  • The dashboard and user interface are simple to use.

Cost:

You can request for a quote on their website directly.


18. OWASP

OWASP, which stands for Open Web Application Security Project, is a non-profit organisation dedicated to enhancing software security around the world. Multiple tools are available for pen testing various software environments and protocols as part of the project.

Key Features:

  • VMware, VirtualBox, and Parallels virtual machines

  • Individual Debian packages (.deb) that try to be Linux distro-independent.

  • A bootable ISO image that can be found on a variety of cloud services.

Cost:

Quote can be requested on their website.


19. Samurai Framework

Samurai Framework is a powerful penetration software. It works with VirtualBox and VMWare, which have been pre-configured to be used as a web pen-testing environment.

Key Features:

  • It's a tool that's open source and free to use.

  • It is a collection of the greatest open source and free tools for testing and attacking websites.

  • It also comes with a pre-configured wiki that may be used to set up the central data storage during the penetration test.

Cost:

This tool is available for free.


20. OWASP ZAP

OWASP ZAP (Zap Attack Proxy) is one of the most popular free security tools in the world, with hundreds of international volunteers actively maintaining it. It can assist you in automatically detecting security flaws in your web applications while you are building and testing them. It's also a wonderful tool for manual security testing for skilled pentesters.

Key Features:

  • Brute force enabled access to all documents.

  • The spidering feature aids in the creation of the website's hierarchical structure.

  • Providing it with erroneous or unexpected data in order to cause it to fail or deliver unexpected outcomes

  • This is a useful tool for determining the open ports on the target website.

Cost:

This tool is available for free.


21. Rapid7

Rapid7 provides InsightVM and Nexpose two primary vulnerability management products that can help you with pentesting. Nexpose, their first vulnerability scanner, is a hosted service for businesses of all sizes.

InsightVM, their cloud-based solution, combines the power of Rapid7's Insight platform with the core Nexpose capabilities to give a completely available, scalable, and effective approach to collect vulnerability data, transform it into answers, and reduce risk.

Key Features:

  • Get a Real-Time Risk Assessment.

  • Know where you should concentrate your efforts.

  • Boost the Effectiveness of Your Security Program.

Cost:

Free trial version available.


22. Super Scan

Super Scan is exclusively for Windows. Anyone who works with the Internet knows that port scanning is a must-do procedure. Foundstone's SuperScan is one of the most effective programmes for this purpose. The nicest part about this programme is that it does not require any installation.

Key Features:

  • Easy HTML report creation

  • Scanning of source ports

  • Banner grabbing on a large scale

  • A large database of port list descriptions is built-in.

Cost:

This tool is available for free.


23. Ettercap

Ettercap is an all-in-one pen testing solution. It is one of the top penetration testing tools available, and it supports both - active and passive dissection. It also has a lot of network and host analysis features.

Key Features:

  • Many methods can be dissected both actively and passively with it.

  • ARP poisoning is a feature of ARP poisoning that allows two hosts on a switched LAN to sniff each other.

  • Characters can be injected into a server or a client while the connection is still active.

Cost:

This tool is available for free.


24. Security Onion

Security Onion offers all three - threat identification, company security monitoring, and management of logs. It is a free and open Linux distribution. The simple Setup wizard allows you to quickly create an army of distributed sensors for your business.

The only con is that it requires a complex set up procedure.

Key Features:

  • Network Security Monitoring is based on a distributed client-server approach that enables for the monitoring of security-related events.

  • It has a full packet capture feature.

  • Intrusion detection systems that are network-based and host-based

Cost:

This software is available for free.


25. Personal Software Inspector

Personal Software Inspector free computer security programme. This utility can detect flaws in apps running on a PC or a server.

You can easily avail a comprehensive collection of tools that will provide insight across the software vulnerability management spectrum, including research, assessment, and patching.

Key Features:

  • It's accessible in a total of eight languages.

  • Updates insecure programmes automatically.

  • It detects vulnerable programmes automatically and covers thousands of codes.

  • This pen testing application checks your PC for susceptible apps automatically and on a regular basis.

Cost:

Free trial version available.


26. Websecurify

Websecurify is a comprehensive security testing platform. It has a user-friendly interface that is simple and straightforward to operate. It uses a hybrid of automated and manual vulnerability testing techniques.

It is based out of London and has a dedicated team of individuals who are passionate towards the field of pen testing.

Key Features:

  • Testing and scanning technology that works well

  • To detect URLs, a powerful testing engine is used.

  • It may be customised with a variety of add-ons.

Cost:

This tools offers a free version.


27. Vega

Vega, offered by Subgraph, is relatively new to the field of penetration testing. It is constantly evolving and latest versions are being released with some cutting edge features. It does an efficient job in testing the security of web applications and sites.

Key Features:

  • Security testing of all kinds - automated, manual, or hybrid.

  • Users can use this pen testing program to detect vulnerabilities.

  • When given user credentials, it can automatically log into websites.

Cost:

This tool is available for free.


28. Nikto

Nikto is an Open Source internet server scanner that crawls web servers for a wide range of issues, including several potentially harmful files, outdated versions on over thousands of sites, and version-specific problems related to versions on over 200 servers.

Key Features:

  • Headers, favicons, and files are used to identify installed applications.

  • Basic and NTLM host authentication

  • Apache with cgiwrap username enumeration subdomain guessing

  • Techniques for "phishing" for content on web servers using mutations

Cost:

This tool is available for free.


Things to Consider When Selecting a Pentest Tool

1. Examine the Vendor’s Technological Achievements.

Examine the vendor's technological achievements.

The following are some good indicators of a vendor's technological expertise:

  • Is there any proprietary technology or tools available from the vendor?

  • Is the vendor well-known and well-liked among security researchers?

  • Is there any original technical research that the vendor has published in the field of Pen Testing.

2. Concentrate on the Vendor’s Actual Knowledge Rather Than Merely Credentials

If you place too much emphasis on individual qualification, you'll lose a lot of talented penetration testers. Penetration testing as a profession has yet to agree on a relevant certification scheme.

While large corporations push employees to obtain credentials, this overemphasis is one of the reasons why strong penetration testers are drawn to specialist penetration testing firms, which place a higher value on individual abilities than industry qualifications.


Conclusion

Penetration testing is an important aspect of ensuring that systems are secure. Using the correct penetration testing tools can help you save time while also improving your security posture.


FAQs

What is Penetration Testing?

Penetration testing is a simulated attack used to find potential faults and weaknesses in a company's network, devices, or apps that could lead to a data breach and financial loss.

How is Penetration Testing performed?

During a penetration test, the pen tester will start by scanning the environment to learn more about the devices that are instantly accessible and the procedures and protocols that are in use.

Penetration testers will study the scan findings once the network scan is completed to gain a better understanding of the devices on the network and to review useful items such as the operating systems utilised and the ports and services used by the systems, devices, and machines.

As they test the services in use, the penetration tester will gradually begin evaluating the scan data to detect vulnerabilities.

What should you do after you get the results of Penetration Testing?

The leadership team should prioritise resources for remediation after conducting the evaluation and reviewing the findings. Many businesses start by addressing the simple issues that have a minor impact on their company risk.

28 Best Penetration Testing (Pentest)...
StartupStash Team

The world's biggest online directory of resources and tools for startups and the most upvoted product on ProductHunt History.