Home Security Testing What is the Main Difference Between Vulnerability Scanning and Penetration Testing

What is the Main Difference Between Vulnerability Scanning and Penetration Testing

by 1lyQA Team
vulnerability scanning vs penetration testing

Both penetration testing and vulnerability testing are considered to be an integral part of software security.

They are beneficial in preventing cybercrime. Penetration testing plays an integral role in exploiting different weaknesses within the environment. With the automation of vulnerability scanning, the penetration testing needs different expertise levels.

 Vulnerability scanning is essential to maintain the prerequisite information security. As you go through this write-up, you can seek information about the differences between penetration testing and vulnerability testing:

What is vulnerability testing?

Vulnerability testing contributes to being the automated test of high level, which is known to seek different reports on various vulnerabilities.

You can seek different security weaknesses as you opt for vulnerability scanning. This type of testing helps in scanning different business areas. They provide the passive approach for the management of vulnerability. It is known to report different weaknesses, which they are capable of detecting.

Vulnerability testing offers an in-depth report, which provides an extensive list of different vulnerabilities present in different systems of the business. It provides an informed position that is known to act on different potential weaknesses.

In addition to this, it helps in bolstering the security of the business. If you are searching for a high-level and faster option to highlight different business vulnerabilities, vulnerability scanning is considered a suitable option. Such scans involve a reduced cut-off from the pocket. You can perform such kind of testing by putting the least manual input.

Vulnerability testing plays an integral role in preventing different kinds of flagging problems. Though the file server is known to host sensitive data like personal information which are related to the customers or employees, it might breach the GDPR or information security standards.

What is penetration testing?

Penetration testing contributes to being a hands-on and detailed examination, which the real person performs.

The ultimate objective of such kind of testing is diagnosing and exploiting different weaknesses present in the business. This type of testing is known to stimulate the hacker, thereby attempting to seek access to the business. Penetration testing is regarded as an efficient option to highlight different exploitable areas.

Penetration testing is known to be labor-intensive and more time consuming compared to vulnerability testing. Penetration testing is known to generate in-depth reports, thereby providing different attack descriptions.

The use of manual and live tests provides the suitable choice to seek thorough and accurate findings. The penetration test value is the tester skills. Such kind of testing provides the capabilities of recognizing the weaknesses. It helps in understanding the weaknesses.

Difference between penetration testing and vulnerability testing


With the identification of different security risks, the penetration testing and vulnerability testing offer a helping hand to the business enterprise to understand the specific areas in which they are known to be weak.

Vulnerability scanning contributes to being the automated cyber security assessment automated form. It uses different off-the-shelf software tools, which helps assess the security of the device to the specific network. It is accomplished with the objective of discovering a plethora of security vulnerabilities.

On the other hand, penetration testing happens to be a deep kind of assessment, in which you need to emphasize recognizing different complicated vulnerabilities.

This type of penetration testing helps determine the extent to which hackers can seek unauthorized access to different critical assets and data.


The time, which is necessary for performing vulnerability testing, depends on a plethora of factors, like the size of the network, and the time of the day, in which the scan gets initiated. It takes only a few hours of time to scan businesses of small and medium sizes. The time necessary to perform penetration testing differs, which depends on tester capabilities and the scopes.

Kinds of identified vulnerabilities

Vulnerability testing involves the recognition of different devices, which are executing different applications and operating systems.

It plays an integral role in finding different device configuration issues. Penetration testing helps in revealing the prerequisite CVEs.

It emphasizes the recognition of different exposures, which are present under the surface.

Penetration testing plays an integral role in offering different insights, in which the hackers will perform the breaching of the network. This kind of testing involves the integration of different simulated social engineering attacks.

Testing frequency

Due to the lesser and automated invasive assessments nature, you should ensure to perform vulnerability testing on a broad scale, than penetration testing. There are wide assortments of organizations that execute vulnerability scanning weekly.

On the other hand, business enterprises perform penetration testing every year once or twice. Compliance contributes to being an indispensable factor that depends on the frequency. Hence, it is essential that business enterprises should perform vulnerability testing.

Skillset and resource needs

In the larger business enterprises, security operations center teams execute the vulnerability testing.

Here, specific cyber security experts do not perform assessments. Only network administrators perform them in SMEs. Owing to the prerequisite technical skill level, which is necessary for penetration testing execution, professional testers need extensive experience in the IT sector.

 There is a wide assortment of testers who possess qualifications in different areas, like web application, infrastructure, and different wireless testing. They possess extensive specialist systems knowledge, which is useful across different industries.


The penetration testing and vulnerability testing assessments differ in the specific preparation, which is necessary for executing them.

Business enterprises should give consideration to the additional vulnerability testing, which should be used on a wide scale.

The majority of the vulnerability vendors provide support different to different virtual appliances. It helps in avoiding the install software needs on the physical server.

In the digital age, every business enterprise should assess cyber security consistently. It helps in addressing different weaknesses.

Penetration testing and vulnerability testing are recognized to be crucial cyber security assessments. Each of them comes with its own set of benefits. You are sure to find the business’s bottom line as you opt for penetration testing and Vulnerability Assessment Services.

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