Cyber Assessments

At phia, we believe the best way to test stuff is to break stuff.

Risk is at the core of any enterprise, and risk is best understood from an adversary’s perspective. You need to be your own adversary, putting yourself under a microscope to see what the bad guys see. By taking a system apart, piece by piece, we can peel back the layers exposing flaws by applying iterative and transitive approaches. Only once you’ve completed these tasks can you understand a system, especially those present in the environments operating in today’s modern cyber world.

When called upon, we work tirelessly to understand the technical intricacies of environments at large and disparate enterprises, to provide actionable insight with our cyber assessments. Each assessment is tailored to match the parameters and scoping that make sense to our clients. Every organization and system is unique, requiring a custom approach for the best return on investment.

phia provides a wide range of cyber assessments services, including Red Team Assessments, Remote Penetration Tests (RPT), High Value Asset Assessments (HVA), and Risk and Vulnerability Assessments (RVA).

We tend to group these into three service offerings within these capability areas: Pentesting and Red Teaming, Holistic and Defensive.

Pentesting and Red Teaming

phia separates penetration testing from our red teaming services; the scope is different between these two capabilities.

Both services are done as a black box with limited knowledge or internal information about the systems while performing different levels of threat emulation.

Typically, our pentesting services fall under Remote Penetration Tests (RPTs), wherein a dedicated team is used to assess and identify vulnerabilities of the target system(s). phia then works with the client to eliminate exploitable pathways helping translate complex technical data into actionable information. The term of an RPT typically is two weeks with another week to finalize any reporting.

Red Team Assessments are at least 90 days in length. Extensive research is conducted for at least two weeks, followed by 60 days of active engagement, and concluded with two weeks of analysis to create detailed reporting.

During an RPT, a dedicated team of operators conducts holistic emulation of adversary tactics leveraging open-source intelligence, technical measures such as phishing, exploitation of exposed services and applications for initial access. Then the team works to obtain a foothold through privileged escalation and lateral movement. Of course, the activities for red teaming will be done with an emphasis on stealth to avoid triggering and evading defensive cyber operations.

  • Targeted human web application/network pentesting
  • Full-spectrum red teaming
  • APT/DHA/Adversary Emulation
  • Black and white box approaches
  • Reverse engineering & protection circumvention
  • MITRE ATT&CK TTP Emulation
Defensive Posture Assessment

Purple Team Ops

Our Defensive Posture Assessments create a distinctive mix of our red and blue team operations.

Both black and white box techniques are applied along with closed source intelligence (aka internal knowledge) to expedite and maximize return on time for a higher value to the client. These activities often fall under the High Value Assessment (HVA) and Risk and Vulnerability Assessment (RVA) but often blend active and passive assessment techniques, as appropriate.

The “phia way” includes thorough reviews leveraging white box testing, interviews with experts, output data from systems, design documentation, research on the various systems, and other forms. Black box testing may include techniques leveraged from our penetration and red teaming services to enhance the data available further. The total picture data set will then be analyzed and compared with best practices such as the MITRE ATT&CK and Australian Signals Directorate Top Mitigation strategies for APT to help our clients determine where the best bang for the buck exists.

  • Review architecture and design
  • Assess capabilities and solutions
  • Apply HVT, threat & adversary risk models
  • HVT system, data, and user discovery
  • Identify and prioritize high value asymmetric countermeasures
  • MITRE ATT&CK/ASD 20 Gap Analysis
Risk & Vulnerability Assessment

Blue Team Ops

Our Risk & Vulnerability assessments exclusively focus on more traditional risk, vulnerability, and white box testing that assumes fully authenticated access within the target systems.

phia will leverage a wide variety of existing client-provided tools to help determine where the client’s risk posture sits compared to applicable risk compliance standards, best practices, and the adversary threats the organization is facing.

Testing may include dynamic, static, reverse engineering, code reviews, tabletop configuration, documentation review, and other analytics to help assess the posture of the client. The data collected by our experts are then compared to applicable regulatory and best practices, producing an actionable report for the client.

  • Cyber Hygiene
  • NIST/CIS/SAN Top 20 Critical Controls
  • FedRAMP
  • Holistic Discovery & Remediation
  • Continuous Diagnostics & Mitigations
  • Prioritize static and dynamic analysis of code, systems and networks

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