Since the outbreak of Covid-19 became a world-wide threat in 2020 had emerged, technology might have become the most coined word after ‘Pandemic.’ The great network is known as the backbone of the telecommunication system, which is used to share data and resources using data link, especially in a large internet-connected world. But as we have become more closure, with staying close to our family, working at the convenience of our homes, sharing essential information through shared data exchanges, information security has become more critical than ever to be ensured and to be secured as well. Even a small “cookie” might end up becoming a potential threat to the vital data which needs to be retained in a ‘safe’ environment, and hopefully, no ‘viruses’ may cause a threat. Hence, ensuring that our devices, our shared networks are secured enough to maintain the integrity of our valued data, here we discuss the important and most widely used network scanning tools which are available in the market with their unique features, entrusting a sense of security and faith among the IT community.
But, first, let’s understand, what is the meaning of Network Scanning?
‘Network’ as a term is probably the most used yet least understood due to the vastness of its meaning and importance. It wouldn’t be far off to say that the network forms the backbone of the telecommunication system, which uses the world over to exchange data and resources via the data link.
Before we dive into Network Scanning, it is pertinent that we briefly cover Network Security. As the name suggests, Network Security lays down certain rules, regulations, and restrictions that are undertaken to safeguard the use of and prevent the abuse or arbitrary manipulation of a network.
Network Scanning, which focuses on this article, deals largely with Network Security to identify the loopholes and vulnerabilities in your network and rectify them to safeguard it from unwanted activity and malware. Network Scanning also safeguards your data and confidential information. It hence becomes all the more relevant in today’s day and age, with constant questioning of the credibility of various apps and websites in terms of data protection.
What Is Network Scanning?
Network Scanning is a complex process that can be defined in numerous ways; it involves identifying the active hosts (clients and servers) on any given network and their activities to attack a network. A flipside of the availability of such a process is that attackers are also using it to hack the system. The primary aim of Network Scanning is a system maintenance and security assessment of a network.
In a nutshell, the Network Scanning process includes:
- Identifying and filtering systems between two active hosts on a network.
- Running UDP and TCP network services.
- Detecting the TCP Sequence Number of both hosts.
This article aims to give you a review of the top 5 best Network Scanning Tools used widely to detect network vulnerabilities. Based on our research, the top five slots are taken by Acutenix Online, SolarWinds Network Device scanner, PRTG Network Monitor, Intruder, and Syxsense.
Acunetix Online provides a fully automated network scanning tool that detects and infallibly reports on more than 50,000 known network vulnerabilities and manipulations, eliminating the scope for human error.
It does this by discovering open ports and running services such as assessing the security of routers, firewalls, and load balancers, testing for weak passwords, badly configured Proxy Servers, weak SNMP community strings, and TLS/SSL ciphers, among others.
It is another methodical online and fully automated network scanning tool that detects and reports on over 50,000 known network vulnerabilities and misconfigurations.
It helps to discover the open ports and running services; evaluate the security of routers, switches, firewalls, and load balancers; tests for weak passwords, badly configured Proxy Servers, and others. It is a complete end-to-end security scanner with a 360-degree view of all your network security needs.
some of its amazing features include:
- Detecting over 6,500 vulnerabilities and even out-of-the-band vulnerabilities.
- Advanced macro recording technology helps to scan tough multi-level forms and even password-protected areas of your site.
Acutenix network scanning tool is available for free for up to 1 year!
SolarWinds Network Device Scanner
SolarWinds loads the Network Device Scanner with Network Performance Monitor to monitor, discover and scan the network devices. The SolarWinds Network Discovery Tool can be run once, or it can also be scheduled for routine monitoring.
- SolarWinds Network Device Scanner will automatically discover and scan the network devices.
- This scan will identify fault, availability, and performance metrics for the devices on the network.
- SolarWinds Network Performance Monitor will provide the root cause through topology-aware network alerts.
PRTG Network Monitor
PRTG Network Monitor is a powerful scanner that can provide an accurate analysis of your entire network infrastructure. All systems, devices, traffic, and applications in your IT infrastructure can be monitored by the PRTG Network Monitor without additional plugins.
The PRTG Network Monitor is easy to use and manageable for any business size. Monitors network ability along with usage and provides a web-based interface.
- PRTG Network Monitor will provide an accurate report of the bandwidth your devices and applications use to identify the source of bottlenecks.
- The additional support of individually-configured PRTG sensors and SQL queries helps you monitor specific datasets from your databases.
- It enables you to centralize the monitoring and management of all your computing services from anywhere.
- The PRTG Network Monitor comes packed with various other features and functionalities for Server, Monitoring, LAN Monitoring, SNMP, etc.
Intruder is a vulnerability scanner that identifies cybersecurity weaknesses in your network systems, explains the risks, and helps with rectification before a breach can occur.
Intruder makes enterprise-grade loophole scanning accessible to companies of all sizes in its catalog of thousands of automated security checks available. Intruder, in its security checks, undertakes identifying misconfigurations, missing patches, and common web application issues such as SQL injection & cross-site scripting.
It is a very efficient online vulnerability scanner that finds cybersecurity weaknesses in your digital infrastructure even before those evil hackers would do.
It provides services that ensure enterprise-grade security, tracks. It identifies emerging threat scans by managing and monitoring your network infrastructure and even cloud systems, which are now very commonly used. With more than 10,000 security checks available, it provides best-in-class protection for your critical systems.
Developed by experienced security professionals, Intruder minimizes much of the hassle of vulnerability management, thus helping you channel your focus on what is truly relevant and important. It helps save your time by prioritizing results based on their context and proactively scans your systems for the latest loopholes so that you are not constantly preoccupied and fretting about the safety of your network system.
Syxsense consists of the Vulnerability Scanner in its Syxsense Secure product. Encapsulating security scanning and management in one console, Syxsense remains the sole network scanner that identifies for IT and Security teams what’s wrong and provides a structural solution to rectify the problem.
With Syxsense, you get visibility into Operating Systems and third-party vulnerabilities like defects, errors, or manipulations of components, with increased cyber resilience for your network system with automated security scans.
Syxsense’s Vulnerability scanner tool helps you save your time, effort, and money with easy-to-replicate automated scans in any frequency to identify and address potential risks before they cause any irreparable damage. And sites like TechiePlus tell you the details about the tool that could be very helpful.
These are the top five network scanning tools of 2021; we have weighed out all their features against one another to help you decide which one meets your requirements the most and provides you with outcomes most favorable to you.
Leaving these top 5 aside, there are a few equally good ones you should try out:
OpUtils is an IP address and switch port management software that helps engineers efficiently monitor, diagnose, and troubleshoot IT resources. OpUtils provides troubleshooting and real-time monitoring capabilities to complement existing management tools. It helps network engineers through easy management of their switches and IP address.
It offers IP address management services, switches port management, rogue device detection, bandwidth monitoring, configuring file management, etc.
Paessler Is one of the most efficient tools available for network monitoring and scanning tool used by professionals. It takes very little time to install, helps one to discover your entire network automatically, and enables its users to Use as Free Network Monitoring Software with 100 sensors. It also alerts you before emergencies occur, which ensures great agility.
Some of its class apart features include –
- Integrated technologies: All the important technologies are supported, such as SNMP, WMI, SSH, etc.
- Maps and dashboards: visualizing the network using real-time maps with live status information
- Flexible altering
Last but not the least, Nikto is a free software command-line vulnerability scanner that scans web servers for dangerous files, old and out-dated server software, and other problems. It performs various generic and also server-type specific checks. It also captures and prints any cookies received, which is a great feature!
It also essentially tests the web server in the quickest time possible and also logs files or to IPS/IDS. However, there is additional support for LibWhisker’s anti-IDS methods if the users wish to give it a try (or test your IDS system).
Some of its great features include:-
- Complete HTTP proxy support. Along with much-customized reporting in XML, HTML, and CSV formats.
- The scanning services are also on auto-update