Penetration Testing Case Study: How we assisted social startup Linktree

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With over 8 million users worldwide, Linktree is a global leader in social media referencing and content sharing. The company approached Gridware to undertake best practice security testing to ensure that they could continue to operate efficiently while mitigating risks involved with legal complications associated with cyber-attacks.

Background

With over 8 million users worldwide, Linktree is a global leader in social media referencing and content sharing.

The Melbourne based tech giant was founded in 2016 by Australian brothers Alex and Anthony Zaccaria as well as their partner Nick Humphreys,

Linktree became an overnight success, allowing users to share, sell, curate and grow bigger than ever. Linktree partnered with Gridware to undertake best practice security testing to ensure that they could continue to operate efficiently and eliminate the possibility of financial, reputational and legal complications associated with cyber-attacks.

Challenge

Significant difficulties emerge for Linktree when operating technologies on such a global scale.

With any complex environment, malicious threat actors are provided with several points of entry into technological systems and security measures.

Although Linktree’s team had the ability to independently evaluate their own cybersecurity measures, the company required expert verification of possible security vulnerabilities and their respective remediation activities. Linktree’s security team opted to proceed with a web application penetration test to achieve this.

The Solution

Before the scheduled testing date, a preliminary analysis was conducted using open-source intelligence (OSINT) techniques to determine which elements of Linktree’s applications would be evaluated.

The Gridware penetration testing team created a scope and timeline during a rules of engagement meeting to ensure that Linktree experienced no disruption to their site or users as the penetration test was being executed.

Gridware’s Sydney-based penetration testing team conducted a thorough analysis of Linktree’s IT practices, utilising a combination of vulnerability scanning and manual penetration testing to detect any security gaps or attack vectors that may have put Linktree at risk of a cyber-attack.

Gridware identified several opportunities for improvement in Linktree’s cybersecurity architecture which were rectified through the penetration testing team’s expert recommendations.

Following the completion of the web application penetration test, a detailed report was prepared for Linktree’s development team, highlighting any issues alongside their corresponding remediation activities.

By following Gridware’s risk-based vulnerability identification approach, Linktree systematically addressed issues found to exist and attended to the most significant vulnerabilities first.

Gridware performed re-verification testing after Linktree’s development team confirmed that all possible vulnerabilities had been resolved. This ensured that all modifications had been made efficiently and no subsequent problems had arisen.

The Outcome

Gridware’s penetration testing services added significant value to Linktree’s overall competitiveness within the global business environment, as their cybersecurity measures were assessed against the best practice standards and protocols for security.

Additionally, as Gridware’s testing was conducted in a staged development environment, Linktree experience no disruption to their online platform. In doing so, Linktree was able to add confidence to both their clients and Board while supporting the highest level of security governance and regulatory compliance.

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