What Can I Expect from a Red Team Engagement?

Article Cybersecurity


Red Team Engagement

Red teaming has become increasingly recognized as a valuable practice for assessing and improving cybersecurity defenses and administrative controls. Many organizations, particularly those in industries with higher cybersecurity risks such as finance, higher education, healthcare, and technology are adopting red teaming as part of their security strategy.

During a red team engagement, you can expect a thorough assessment of your organization’s security posture and resilience against threats from cybercriminals. Here are some key aspects of what to expect:

    • Simulation of real-world threats
      The red team will simulate the real-world techniques used by cyber attackers, including advanced persistent threats (APTs) such as nation-state actors, criminal organizations, or cyber espionage groups, to assess your organization’s readiness to defend against sophisticated adversaries.
    • Comprehensive assessment
      The engagement will involve a comprehensive assessment of various aspects of your organization’s security, including systems, networks, applications, physical security, and employee awareness.
    • Attack simulation
      The red team will employ a variety of tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTPs) to simulate cyber-attacks, such as phishing, social engineering, penetration testing, and the exploitation of vulnerabilities.
    • Stealth and discretion
      The red team will operate with stealth and operational security (OpSec) to avoid detection and closely mimic the behavior of real attackers. This involves minimizing noise, avoiding unnecessary actions that could trigger alarms, and blending in with normal user behavior. Red team members may assume cover identities or personas to simulate the attacker’s behavior by using fake accounts, email addresses, and other identifiers to avoid attribution.
    • Identification of vulnerabilities
      The red team will identify vulnerabilities, weaknesses, and gaps in your organization’s defenses, including misconfigurations, insecure practices, and outdated software. Red teams may opportunistically exploit vulnerabilities as they are discovered, rather than immediately escalating privileges, or conduct high-profile attacks that could raise suspicion.
    • Testing of defenses
      The engagement will test the effectiveness of your organization’s security controls, detection and response capabilities, and overall resilience against threats posed by cybercriminals.
    • Incident response simulation
      The red team may simulate security incidents, such as data breaches or network intrusions, to test your organization’s incident response procedures and the ability to detect, contain, and respond to security breaches in real-time.
    • Documentation of findings
      All findings, including vulnerabilities discovered, exploitation techniques used, and recommendations for remediation, are documented in a detailed report and shared with key stakeholders within your organization who are responsible for information and cybersecurity, risk management, and decision-making.
    • Post-engagement analysis
      After the engagement, there will be a post-engagement analysis to review and analyze the outcomes of the assessment, identify lessons learned, and develop recommendations for improving security defenses.
    • Continuous improvement
      The engagement will serve as part of an ongoing process of continuous improvement, helping your organization strengthen its security posture, enhance its ability to defend against threats from cybercriminals, and better protect its assets and data.

As threats to information and cybersecurity continue to evolve and become more sophisticated, taking proactive security measures like red teaming is increasingly critical to include in your organization’s comprehensive security strategy. A red team engagement provides valuable insights into your organization’s security posture and helps identify areas for improvement to better defend against threats posed by cybercriminals.

RedLens InfoSec is your trusted red team partner. Contact us to learn more and get started!

Additional feedback from our RedLens InfoSec team:

[Wheeler]: “Red team engagements are most suitable for organizations that have an information security program with an advanced maturity level. However, if you perform regular vulnerability scanning and penetration testing, mitigate the findings of those, have detection capabilities, and have them tuned, you might be ready.  Let’s discuss how we can help advance the security maturity of your organization!”



About the Author
Kathy Staples

Kathy Staples

Marketing Manager

Kathy Staples has over 20 years of experience in digital marketing, with special focus on corporate marketing initiatives and serving as an account manager for many Fortune 500 clients. As CampusGuard's Marketing Manager, Kathy's main objectives are to drive the company's brand awareness and marketing strategies while strengthening our partnerships with higher education institutions and organizations. Her marketing skills encompass multiple digital marketing initiatives, including campaign development, website management, SEO optimization, and content, email, and social media marketing.