A Brief Guide to Breach and Attack Simulation

As the world of business continues to rely on technology, it becomes increasingly susceptible to cyberattacks that breach systems and steal private data. Whether you’re seeking to protect confidential business files or keep your customers’ data safe, creating a secure network is of vital importance when running a business.

Considering that a ransomware attack impacts a business in the United States of America every 10 seconds, it’s more important than ever to ensure your business has the necessary defenses ready.

In this article, we’ll be taking a look at one of these defense systems, Breach and Attack Simulation, and explaining why it should be a central tool in your security arsenal.



One of the primary mechanisms that security professionals will use to test their network security is through Breach and Attack Simulation. Typically, these are controlled security initiatives that seek to replicate attacking pathways that a hacker would use to breach into your business.

To operate these simulations, your security teams are typically split into two teams, red and blue. Associated with each color is a set of roles, with the red team being the attackers and the blue team being the defenders.

The combined effort of these two teams exposes pathways where your business has weak security, helping your security officers to then move through your network defenses and improve upon what’s currently lacking. When repeating this process over many weeks or months, your team is able to continually build up the strength of your cyber defenses.

What does the red team do?

Within a breach and attack simulation, the red teams are those that are going to actively attempt to penetrate into your systems and break through any defenses you have created.

When creating a red team, your main options are either to use part of your internal team or hire an external red team of professionals. While it can be a relief to know that your own team is managing your defenses, they can also overlook certain defense or attack structures due to their familiarity.

Hiring an external red team will ensure they attack the system exactly as real-life attackers would. Equally, if there are critical documents that you don’t want exposed, you can withdraw these from the exercise. That said, a real hacker wouldn’t stop at off-limit files, so you’re much better off giving the team absolute free rein.

From there, if the attacking team does find any methods of accessing your most crucial files, you’ll then be able to create more rigorous defenses and block off this pathway. Over time, this will ensure you have the most comprehensive security system possible.

What does the blue team do?

The Yin to the red team’s Yang, the blue team seeks to defend against their attacks. Their first job will be to identify where the attack is coming from, work out which channels are being penetrated, and then seek to put a stop to them.

They have a dual role of both monitoring the threat and then ensuring defenses are actively set up to defend against any attack that is launched. While those on the blue team will be able to develop their security defending skills in this exercise, it is also about checking whether the systems that the team has already constructed are strong enough to withstand the red team’s attacks.

If the blue team fails, they should work directly with the red team (known as purple teaming) in order to then trace the steps of both teams and ensure that more comprehensive defenses are constructed for next time.



While Breach and Attack Simulations are effective when run manually, your business is leaving yourself open to human error. Considering that Verizon’s research shows that 85% of all cybersecurity breaches are caused by human error when relying on manually carrying out these projects, you’re leaving yourself vulnerable.

What’s more, while many security experts may know the majority of the attack methods on the MITRE Attack Framework used by hackers, they’re unlikely to know all of them. Additionally, it takes humans significantly longer to test all the different penetration strategies when compared to an automatic BAS system.

Due to this, it’s heavily recommended that you launch an automatic Breach and Attack Simulation.



When seeking to give your business, website, or organization the very best security possible, one of the most essential elements you can integrate is advanced Breach and Attack Simulation. Whether you run this manually or automatically, it is vital that it is carried out on a regular basis.

While cyber defenses continuously get more effective, so do the tools that hackers use to penetrate into systems. To avoid becoming part of the high percentage of businesses that suffer cyberattacks each year, your cyber defense systems should be of top priority.

Techvera icon

Written by Daniella Asaf


March 28, 2022

You May Also Like…

Skip to content