Amazon Web Services (AWS) Penetration Testing

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With over 90 different cloud hosting services, the AWS cloud environment offers content delivery, compute, storage, security management, network infrastructure, and physical hosting opportunities. These services typically fall into Infrastructure (IaaS), Platform (PaaS), or Software as a service (SaaS). Most generally used as virtual environments for internal organizational and/or service to consumers for data storage, code development, networking, and web application services.

What is AWS Penetration Testing?

AWS penetration testing is rigorous testing of Amazon Web Services (AWS) environments to uncover cybersecurity vulnerabilities.

AWS pen testing is different from routine penetration testing. There are four key focus areas for AWS penetration tests:

  • Your AWS cloud external infrastructure
  • Your hosting/building platform applications
  • Your AWS cloud internal infrastructure
  • Configuration review of your AWS setup/environment?

Benefits of Performing a RedTeam Security AWS Penetration Test

Our AWS penetration testing services include:

  • Checking for publicly available resources like open S3 buckets.
  • Searching for unsecured AWS credentials in public code repositories.
  • Ensuring available internal documentation are managed and stored safely throughout the environment.

Since its initial offering, Amazon Web Services (AWS) has provided a relatively simple and reliable way for companies to reduce purchasing additional hardware to host their services. But with new infrastructure and network dynamics come unknown risks and attack paths. Testing the assumptions made about a company’s AWS security and overall cybersecurity posture of their cloud environment are essential components of maintaining good security hygiene and are, in many cases, also required by law.

Because threat actors have direct access to all the resources exposed to the Internet, the barrier they would have to overcome to begin attacking any site is as little as a passing curiosity. An attacker could spend their time searching the web for improperly stored AWS access keys, API keys, or session tokens to attempt a cloud takeover. Alternatively, an attacker could exploit traditional web application security vulnerabilities to access sensitive AWS infrastructure and roles. Opportunistic attackers now have many ideal routes to penetrate and move laterally through modern, cloud-based networks and web applications.

This opens up vulnerabilities and the potential access to sensitive data or user credentials through insufficiently secured APIs or flaws in code running on AWS Lambda. Privileged roles and associated access keys can often provide a bad actor with access to features requiring access to a machine or the local network on-premise.

Discuss your AWS Penetration Testing needs with an expert today

The RedTeam Security Solution to Testing AWS Security Vulnerabilities

Our comprehensive AWS security testing includes:

  • Testing application security for flaws that could compromise a cloud environment.
  • Testing the cloud network directly, whether the servers are set up as exclusively internal only or are hosting externally facing services exposed to the Internet.
  • Testing for misconfigurations within the AWS account’s management console (Includes a review of IAM users, groups, roles, policies, and essential services they may have access to).

RedTeam Security’s web application penetration testing includes searching for vulnerabilities in Amazon Web Services (AWS) environments and on-premise environments. When reviewing AWS cloud security, many foundational techniques involving reconnaissance and information gathering will look the same as those performed against non-cloud platforms. Still, additional tools and methods may be employed to conduct a rigorous review of appropriate controls.

For example, during a typical pen test engagement, we look at assets (applications, APIs) and the supporting systems and cloud infrastructure those applications are running in (operating systems, containers, networks, devices, and servers). The methodology for testing AWS infrastructure is similar. Still, in addition to testing your cloud environment’s network security, we will also analyze configurations’ security affecting access to the AWS account and its resources.

At its most basic level, investigation of a cloud environment usually involves looking for publicly accessible resources and credentials related to AWS services (I.e., S3, RDS, Lambda, EC2, CloudTrail, SG, CloudWatch) and testing their information security. A more in-depth option could involve provisioning a test user of the AWS account and providing that to our testers. This additional access allows for a deeper look at IAM users, groups, roles, and policies in place in the environment and aids in hunting for dangerous misconfigurations.

Our Methodology

Learn more about RedTeam Security's AWS Penetration Testing Methodology.

Schedule a Consultation

At RedTeam Security, we understand your cloud security is essential to maintain your organization’s overall security strategy. We will rigorously test all known exploits to identify other vulnerabilities. From information gathering to exploiting potential cybersecurity threats, we are ready and committed to helping you take the next step to ensure your AWS security is the strongest it can be. To learn more about how we can meet your unique information security needs, contact RedTeam Security online or call (952) 836-2770 today.

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AWS Penetration Testing FAQs

AWS stands for Amazon Web Services.
Any business that stores its infrastructure in the cloud environment should consider AWS penetration testing. Threats from a cyber attack or data breach can happen through the cloud, just as with on-site infrastructures.
Yes, AWS users can perform penetration testing on their applications or systems. However, for penetration testers, AWS has set specific boundaries that need to be followed.

Every organization should share complete responsibility in validating their AWS configuration and implementation as a part of their cyber security plan and policy. AWS penetration testing is important to: 

  • Make sure multifactor authentication mechanisms are implemented properly.
  • To remain compliant.
  • Identify vulnerabilities to help protect from malware and data breaches.
The main difference is who takes ownership of the asset whose testing is being done. Since AWS is a subsidiary of Amazon, the ownership difference holds that a traditional AWS pentest can be replicated without violating the AWS acceptable use policy.

Our Services


Learn more about RedTeam Security’s advanced Application, Network and Physical Penetration Testing, Social Engineering and Red Teaming services.

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