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Step 3: Password testing -- What good are your findings?

Weak passwords can be a huge security vulnerability. You can mitigate this risk by attempting to find your weaknesses before a malicious hacker does. Contributor Kevin Beaver provides a step-by-step guide on how to crack your own network passwords.

You can use your test results in a couple of different ways. For starters, they'll serve as a litmus test to determine whether or not you have password security risks. Odds are you do somehow somewhere. They'll also provide hard evidence to upper management that something needs to be done about the problem. This may include formal security awareness, new authentication technologies, or "tweaking" of existing policies -- especially on the enforcement side. 

All in all, password cracking tests are an excellent way to not only root out weaknesses on your Windows network but also to see if people and processes are adhering to policies. Perform these tests on your network now and ongoing in the future and I guarantee you'll be amazed at what you uncover.

Cracking network passwords

 Home: Introduction
 Step 1: Ethical hacking methodology
 Step 2: Tools you should use
 Step 3: What good are your findings?

Kevin Beaver is an information security consultant, keynote speaker, and expert witness with Atlanta-based Principle Logic, LLC where he specializes in performing independent security assessments.

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