What is web application penetration testing?

In today’s digital age, every organization, large or small, has to have an online presence. Those with their own website or web applications know exactly how important it is that they remain stable and secure.

Web application security testing uses a digital simulated cyber attack to probe the security of websites and their features. Technical misconfigurations, outdated software, and human errors are all potential vulnerabilities that cyber attackers could exploit.

The goal of web application penetration testing is to use multiple user types, techniques, and tools, to test the security posture of your online presence. After attacking your estate, we’ll provide a full debrief to ensure it can’t happen again.

Testing a web application

Our approach to web application penetration testing

Our Swarm of ethical hackers are equipped with the necessary tools and experience to deliver an attack unlike no other. They act like genuine malicious actors and use their knowledge to understand the weakness and gaps in your web applications.

Showing the results of a web app test to a client

Share all your information. or conceal it.

Share all your information or conceal it. It’s up to you. You can opt for closed-book testing or a deeper, open-book approach. Either way, we’ll find a crack that we can slip through and subvert the intended use of your applications, before a genuine attacker can.

Once we’ve uncovered the hidden vulnerabilities in your web applications and APIs, we’ll provide a full debriefing. We promise to not show up suited and booted with long PowerPoint presentations that will bore you to death. Instead, we provide curated workshops focused on team upskilling that highlight how we attacked your estate, and how you can better defend via enhanced coding techniques and configuration hardening.

“We are really happy with CovertSwarm as our external RED team.”

COO and Co-founder, IT services and consulting company.

Constant cyber attack via subscription

For a simple monthly fee, our dedicated team of ethical hackers will constantly attack the full scope of your brand using digital, physical and social methods.

And when we find a way to breach your organization, we’ll raise the alarm before a real threat succeeds.


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Laptops on desk


Just as your security defenses must evolve to keep pace with organizational change, so must your approach to cyber attack.

With most security breaches occurring many days prior to detection, effective simulated assaults must be constant. It’s the only way to counteract an APT and avoid zero-day exploits.

A room with equipment left alone


It’s not just your systems and applications which are susceptible to threat. Your people are too. Staff members are one of the most common breach points for successful cyber attacks.

That’s why, thinking beyond the digital, we’ll seek to exploit previous unexplored weaknesses in your physical and social environments too.


Ready to be hacked? For a demo of our services or to get a quote, just get in touch.

Regular changes call for regular testing

If you update software, release code changes, or tweak your tech stack regularly, you need a service that keeps up with your evolving attack surfaces. Ultimately, you need web application penetration testing services that provide valuable insights and strengthen your security posture.

For us, communication is constant.

When it comes to addressing evolving security threats, the power of communication is key. We create meaningful long-term relationships with our clients and throughout our engagements connect with them continuously via their preferred channels – Slack, MS Teams, or Google Hangouts.

Benefits of our web application penetration testing

From fatal discoveries to patched up protection

Let us discover the fatal weaknesses in your web applications. Invite us to turn your dream website into a complete nightmare. Best thing about it? You’ll end up with patched up protection in places you didn’t even know you needed.

‘Zero Day’ vulnerabilities

Our team thrives on hunting and eradicating obscure threats in your security system. We’re dedicated to ensuring ‘Zero Day’ vulnerabilities are unexploitable and rendered harmless.

Access ongoing support and extensive knowledge

Once a dedicated ethical hacker is assigned to your case, you’ll have access to ongoing support from a hive of cybersecurity specialists. Make use of their extensive knowledge when you need it the most.

Features of our web application penetration testing

Decades of experience and thousands of attacks

Our swarm of elite ethical hackers have a wide range of technology skill sets and decades of experience to back them up. Spanning over 100 brands in more than 30 countries, our team is truly diverse and qualified.

Efficient as a one-off, but even greater as a subscription.

Hackers won’t take the day off and neither will we. Open the doors to regular testing, broader scopes, and greater efficiency by subscribing to Constant Cyber Attack.

Testing that suits your unique requirements

No two companies are the same. That’s why we create a customized test and attack plan that will suit your unique needs. Whether you need limited-scope testing or more realistic open-scope testing, we have you covered.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is web application penetration testing important?

If you already own a website, you know just how important it is that it remains secure. You can discover weaknesses in your security systems and fix them before malicious actors have the opportunity to exploit them.

Not only does regular penetration testing help keep sensitive data secure in the event of cyber attacks, but it also avoids costly breaches down the line. Plus, web application pen testing helps maintain compliance with industry standards and regulations.

What are the different types of web application testing?

There are different web application penetration testing approaches and tools that can be used to ensure maximum security. These include:

  • Dynamic application security: Web applications are used in real-time and attackers look for weak spots to break into your system.
  • Static application security: Source codes are used to detect security vulnerabilities, like coding errors, before the application is deployed which leads to more secure software.
  • Penetration testing for web applications: Web applications undergo a simulated cyber attack. Manual and automated processes are used to identify vulnerabilities and provide remediation techniques before malicious actors can exploit them.
  • Mobile application testing: Mobile applications are subjected to various attack scenarios, including data theft, reverse engineering, and malicious code injection.
What’s the difference between web application testing and penetration testing?

Web application testing focuses specifically on the security of web-related applications. Penetration testing is broader and attempts to infiltrate the entire system through security gaps.

The former consists of identifying weaknesses in specific areas, such as access control and application control, whereas the latter looks at vulnerabilities in a wider range of areas, such as firewalls, operating systems, and so on.

Who needs web application penetration testing?

No matter the size, no matter the industry. If your organization relies on a web application to conduct business operations, you should partner with a web application security testing company.

Web applications hold an immense amount of sensitive information, so if you want to protect your integrity, you need to look out for the security of customer data. Find the hidden weaknesses in your system and fix them before a hacker slips in through the cracks.

When and how often should a web application penetration test be done?

In today’s rapidly changing digital landscape, new and sophisticated threats are constantly evolving. That’s why a one-and-done approach to web application security testing just won’t cut it.

Regular testing is vital to maintain the security of your web application. Don’t wait for a breach to occur to start taking your defense posture seriously. Be proactive and stay one step ahead.

Your desired frequency depends on how often you update the application as well as the needs of your business. But the more often you test, the more prepared you’ll be, and the lower your risk of a breach.


What vulnerabilities do you look for during a web application penetration test?

We’re relentless in our search. We leave no stone unturned until we find the smallest crack that we can slip through. From broken authentication to weak cryptography, and everything else in between, we use both automated and manual techniques to break into your web application.

How long does a web application security test take?

The length of a security test will depend on the complexity and size of your web application. We’ll tailor our approach to your unique needs. Depending on your requirements, a full web application penetration test could take anywhere from a few days to a few months to complete.

Is your web application penetration testing automated?

While we do use automated tools to augment our attacks, all CovertSwarm engagements are led by our Swarm of ethical hackers. In this way, we deliver human intelligence-led attacks that are then accelerated, and taken deeper, thanks to our cutting-edge tools.

How is web application penetration testing performed?

Web application penetration testing methodology tends to follow a similar pattern, this includes information gathering, vulnerability testing, exploitation, risk assessment, and reporting. During the vulnerability phase, we operate a combination of manual and automated web application security testing techniques.

What are some common web application vulnerabilities?

Some of the most common web application vulnerabilities that are frequently exploited by attackers include: 

  • Cross-site scripting (XSS) 
  • Injection vulnerabilities
  • Insecure direct object references
  • Security misconfigurations
  • Broken authentication and session management 


How can web application vulnerabilities be exploited?

Depending on the specific vulnerability, hackers can exploit your web application in different ways. For example, they may try to gain unauthorized access to sensitive data, take control of your underlying server, or inject malicious code. Aside from data breaches, this exploitation can lead to other serious cyber attacks, such as denial-of-service attacks.

How much does a web application penetration test cost?

It depends on various factors, such as the complexity of your web application and the scope of the test. But we guarantee the cost of a web application penetration test will be minimal in comparison to the damage your brand could face in the event of a major security breach.

What happens after a web application penetration test is done?

After the automated security testing of web applications is complete, we’ll pinpoint all of the hidden weaknesses we found. We provide a detailed debrief that cuts out the noise and gets straight to the point.

With this information, we’ll curate unique workshops that enhance your team’s skills and demonstrate exactly how we penetrated your system. Finally, we provide you with the necessary knowledge and tools that ensure a breach in the system does not occur again.

Our services

Successful organizations are constant targets for malicious actors. Those who take security seriously don’t test their defenses once a year, they subscribe to CovertSwarm to attack continuously through our services.