Security Audit

16 Best Vulnerability Scanning Tools in 2024 [Reviewed]

Updated on: January 12, 2024

16 Best Vulnerability Scanning Tools in 2024 [Reviewed]

Vulnerability scanning refers to probing a target system to discover the flaws and weak points in its security, analyze the risk, and find the best way to fix them based on priority.

Vulnerability assessment scanning must be done by all companies that deal with sensitive and valuable information to ensure that their security systems are up to date and has no vulnerabilities that could pose a threat. 

16 Best Vulnerability Scanning Tools

  1. Astra Pentest
  2. Intruder
  3. Acunetix
  4. Cobalt.IO
  5. Burp Suite
  6. Wireshark
  7. Qualys Guard
  8. Nessus
  9. OpenVAS
  10. AppKnox
  11. Netsparker
  12. Rapid7
  13. Tripwire IP360
  14. Frontline
  15. Nikto
  16. W3AF

4 Factors To Consider For The Best Vulnerability Scanning Tools

When looking for good vulnerability assessment scanning tools, one must keep in the following features: 

  • Do they offer gap analysis to find possible gaps in your organization’s security posture and performance?
  • Is the scanner comprehensive and capable of detecting all known flaws from CVEs, OWASP Top 10, and SANs 25  as well as avoiding false positives?
  • Does it provide features like scan-behind-logins and business-logic errors?
  • What are their reputation and overall customer service? 

This article will discuss the top vulnerability scanning tools, their features as well the factors involved in choosing top-notch vulnerability scanning tools for one’s needs. Along with this, the steps taken by good vulnerability scanning tools and the attributes that make them important will also be explained in detail.

Vulnerability Assessment ToolFeatures Offered
Astra PentestContinuous scanning, CI/CD integration, scan behind login, vulnerability management, penetration testing
IntruderVulnerability scanning, pentesting, scan behind login
AcunetixVulnerability management, runs on multiple platforms
CobaltCloud-based vulnerability assessment, managed vulnerability scanning services
Burp SuiteAutomated pentest, advanced crawler
WiresharkNetwork monitoring, protocol development, trouble shooting
Qualys GuardCloud infrastructure scanning, automated security audit
NessusAsset discovery, malware detection, vulnerability scanning
OpenVASAuthenticated and unauthenticated scans, scalable vulnerability assessment


Detailed Review of 10 Vulnerability Scanning Tools

1. Astra Pentest

Astra Pentest


  • Scanner Capacity: Web and Mobile Applications, Cloud Infrastructure, API, and Networks
  • Manual Pentest: Yes
  • Accuracy: Zero False Positives Assured (Vetted Scans)
  • Vulnerability Management:  Remediation Assistance, Detailed Reports, POC videos
  • Compliance: GDPR, ISO 27001, HIPAA, PCI-DSS, SOC 2
  • Price: Starts at $99/month

Astra Pentest is the best option out of all the vulnerability assessment scanning tools available out there. Its comprehensive constantly evolving scanner is capable of running more than 3000 tests to identify vulnerabilities. Other features include:

  • Enhanced security: Astra Pentest’s extensively evolving powerful scanners can detect even the smallest of vulnerabilities meaning they can be rectified immediately to increase the efficiency of the existing security and make it better. 
  • Maintain compliance: Astra’s vulnerability assessment scanning help find areas of non-compliance within your organization’s security be it for GDPR, SOC 2, ISO 27001, HIPAA, or PCI-DSS. They can be corrected to maintain compliance and avoid heft penalties. 
  • Intuitive dashboard: Astra Pentest has a highly intuitive CXO-friendly dashboard that displays all the found vulnerabilities (with CVSS scores) with options to comment underneath for direct communication between pentesters and the members of the target organization. 
  • Seamless collaboration: The dashboard also provides an arena for seamless collaboration between the pentesters and the development team to fix vulnerabilities based on mutual input. 
  • Expert customer care: Astra prides itself on providing 24*7 assistance to customers as well as providing Proof of Concept (POCs) videos to help clients patch the vulnerabilities found. 
  • Publicly verifiable certificate: Once the scanning, remediation, and re-scanning are conducted and all the patches have been verified, Astra gives publicly verifiable certificates that show the company’s security is top-notch and trustworthy. This can be displayed as an enticing feature by the companies to increase the clientele and sales.
  • Continuous vulnerability scans: Astra Pentest provides continuous vulnerability scans to ensure that security systems are constantly monitored and scanned for any newly present vulnerabilities. 
  • Regular pentests: Regular pentest can help understand the exact amount of damage that would be caused by the vulnerabilities detected during the vulnerability scans. These can then be prioritized and fixed accordingly.
  • Integrations Possible: Astra’s vulnerability scanner can be integrated into the CI/CD pipeline thereby allowing for the constant scanning of projects in development for vulnerabilities. This makes patching easier and it can be done for projects in Jira, Slack, GitHub, and GitLab. Its only con would be that it has scope for more integrations than currently available.  


  • Continuous proactive security testing
  • CI/CD integration
  • Collaborative remediation with in-call assistance from security experts
  • Scan behind logged-in pages
  • Zero false positives
  • Optimized pentest for single-page apps


  • No free trial
  • Minimal numbers of integration

Astra Pentest is built by the team of experts that secured Microsoft, Adobe, Facebook, and Buffer

We are also available on weekends 😊

2. Intruder



  • Platform: Windows, Linux, macOS
  • Scanner Capacity: Websites, servers, and cloud
  • Manual pentest: No
  • Accuracy:  False Positive Present
  • Vulnerability management: No
  • Compliance: SOC2, and ISO 27001 
  • Price: $1958/ year

Intruder is a leading security vulnerability assessment tool and penetration testing provider. It is capable of finding weaknesses in one’s security systems before it is exploited. 

  • Easy to use interface.
  • Cloud-based security scanning solution.
  • Provides automated and manual application testing.
  • Does not ensure zero false positives. 


  • Easy to navigate.
  • Readily manageable alerts.


3. Acunetix



  • Scanner Capacity: Web applications
  • Manual Pentests: No
  • Accuracy: False positives possible
  • Scan Behind Logins: Yes
  • Compliance: OWASP, ISO 27001, PCI-DSS, NIST
  • Expert Remediation: Yes
  • Price: Quote on Request

Acunetix is one of the most highly scalable, quick, and best vulnerability assessment scanning tools out there.

This vulnerability assessment software offers: 

  • Fast and accurate prioritization of vulnerabilities found. 
  • Entirely automated and capable of running on multiple platforms.
  • Works for heavily scripted sites and single-page applications. 
  • Minimized false positives, not vetted, however.


  • Provides an inventory of assets. 
  • Fully automated vulnerability scanner
  • Optimizable for different platforms
  • Easy to schedule scans.  
  • Scans across environments.  


  • Difficult to add users
  • The interface isn’t fresh
  • Vulnerability PoCs are too complex

It is one small security loophole v/s your entire website or web application

Get your web app audited with Astra’s Continuous Pentest Solution

4. Cobalt.IO



  • Scanner Capabilities: Cloud, web applications
  • Accuracy: False positives possible
  • Scan Behind Logins: Yes
  • Compliance: PCI-DSS
  • Integrations: Cisco, IBM, Splunk
  • Expert Remediation: Yes
  • Price: Quote Upon Request

Cobalt, a cloud-based automated vulnerability assessment tool that is generally availed for web applications. It offers: 

  • Management service for an organization’s infrastructure and its maintenance.
  • Impressive existing clientele including Nissan and Vodafone.
  • 14- day trial period.


  • The highly scalable vulnerability scanning software.
  • Provides vulnerability management, detection, and response.
  • Accurate reporting that is easy to follow. 


  • Can be slow when scanning. 
  • Difficult to navigate for beginners. 
  • Slightly on the expensive end. 
  • No zero false positive assurance.

5. Burp Suite



  • Platform: Windows, macOS
  • Scanner Capacity: Web applications
  • Manual pentest: Yes
  • Accuracy: False positives possible
  • Vulnerability management: No
  • Compliance:  PCI-DSS, OWASP Top 10, HIPAA, GDPR
  • Price:  $449/per user/per year

BurpSuite is among the best, constantly evolving vulnerability scanning tools that provides integrations for easy ticket generation. Other features of this vulnerability assessment tool include:

  • Provides manual and advanced automated pentesting services.
  • Provides step-by-step advice for every vulnerability found.
  • Can crawl through complex targets with ease based on URLs and content.
  • Advanced solutions are commercialized and can be expensive.


  • Has both open-source and commercial editions.
  • User-friendly interface.
  • Best internal penetration testing tools. 


  • Requires better integrations.
  • The commercial product is pricey.
  • The free version has lesser features.

6. Wireshark



  • Platform: Unix, Windows. Needs libraries like Qt, GLib, & libpcap to run 
  • Scanner Capacity: Captures live packet data from a network interface
  • Manual pentest: Useful tool for pentesting
  • Accuracy: Fairly accurate
  • Vulnerability management: No
  • Compliance: Indirectly relates to compliance reporting 
  • Price: Free

Wireshark is one of the top vulnerability assessment tools that is a freely available network packet analyzer that’s made use of by a large population of security testers. Its features include:

  • Live monitoring and offline capturing.
  • Runs on different platforms like Windows, Linux, and more.
  • Prominently used for network monitoring, troubleshooting, and protocol development.
  • However, it does not readily detect and report intrusions found. 


  • Capture live data packet from network interfaces and analyzes it in real-time
  • Available for free


  • It does not run from outside a network
  • Cannot perform packet injection

7. Qualys Guard



  • Scanner Capacity: Web applications, cloud
  • Manual Pentests: No
  • Accuracy: False positives possible
  • Scan Behind Logins: No
  • Compliance: OWASP, ISO 27001, PCI-DSS, NIST
  • Expert Remediation: Yes
  • Price: Quote on Request 

QualysGuard is one of the top tools used for vulnerability assessments and consists of an integrated application that functions to help organizations manage their cloud security easily and efficiently. It offers:

  • A fully automated spectrum of auditing. 
  • Protective services for IT assets including cloud, and on-premise. 
  • Works well for AWS, Azure, and GCP cloud services. 
  • Can be difficult to navigate for a beginner. 


  • Timely alerts and responses. 
  • Well-designed and easy-to-navigate user interface. 
  • Constant updates ensure the current security measures for the cloud environment. 


  • Limited scheduling options. 
  • Scans are not applicable to all applications.

8. Nessus



  • Platform: Windows, macOS
  • Scanner Capacity: Web applications
  • Manual pentest: No
  • Accuracy: False positives possible
  • Vulnerability management: Yes (Additional Cost)
  • Compliance: HIPAA, ISO, NIST, PCI-DSS
  • Price:  $5,880.20/ year

Nessus is one of the well-known vulnerability assessment scanning tools with a highly comprehensive scanning coverage. It includes:

  • Quick asset discovery.
  • Reduces attack surface and ensures compliance
  • Malware detection and sensitive data discovery are also carried out by this tool.
  • Cannot handle large volumes of data while scanning.


  • Has a free version.
  • Accurate identification of vulnerabilities.
  • Good automated penetration testing tool. 


  • The free version does not have a lot of features.
  • The commercialized version can be expensive.

9. OpenVAS

Open VAS


  • Scanner Capacity: web applications, network protocols
  • Manual Pentests: No
  • Accuracy: False positives possible
  • Scan Behind Logins: Yes
  • Compliance: No
  • Expert Remediation: No
  • Price: Open-source

This open-source vulnerability assessment scanning tool has a constantly updating community and features over 50,000 vulnerability tests. Other features include: 

  • Capable of conducting both authenticated and unauthenticated security tests. 
  • Can carry out large-scale scans with ease. 
  • Might show some false positives. 


  • Automated vulnerability scanning is quick and efficient
  • Freely available network vulnerability scanning tool. 
  • Constantly updated


  • Could be difficult for beginners to make use of. 
  • Automated causes false positives to appear.

10. AppKnox



  • Scanner Capacity: Mobile applications, APIs.
  • Manual Pentest: Yes
  • Accuracy: False positives possible
  • Scan Behind Logins: Yes 
  • Vulnerability Management:  No
  • Compliance: HIPAA, PCI, GDPR, OWASP
  • Price: Quote on request

AppKnox is a security scanner designed for scanning mobile applications. It can perform DAST scans and proves to be a reliable tool for API security testing. AppKnox is a great tool for securing internet-facing assets.

Key features include

  • API security testing
  • Mobile app scanning


  • Provides App scans, dynamic scans and API scans.
  • Covers 130+ test cases
  • Quick vulnerability scanning


  • Reporting only available in PDF formats
  • False positives possible
  • No AWS integration

11. Rapid7



  • Scanner Capacity: Web applications
  • Manual Pentest: No
  • Accuracy: False Positives Possible
  • Scan Behind Logins: Yes
  • Vulnerability Management: Yes  
  • Compliance: No
  • Price: $175/month

Nexpose by Rapid7 is an on-premises vulnerability assessment and scanner tool. It is a great choice for small and mid-sized companies. Nexpose scores vulnerabilities on a scale of 1-1000 instead of 1-10. It gives the users a more insightful take on the age and exploitability of a vulnerability. However, a number of users have found this to be overkill.

Key features include

  • Adaptive security
  • Policy assessment
  • Remediation reporting


  • Great scanning abilities that help meet compliance requirements.
  • Their services are easy to use and deploy.
  • The services are scalable based on customer requirements.


  • Scanned devices can only be removed manually. 
  • Inadequate customer satisfaction. 

12. Veracode



  • Scanner Capacity: Web applications
  • Manual Pentest: Yes
  • Accuracy: False positives possible
  • Scan Behind Logins: Yes
  • Vulnerability Management: Yes
  • Compliance: NIST, PCI, OWASP, HIPAA, GDPR
  • Price: Quote upon request

Veracode is one the best tools for vulnerability assessment allows you to scan hundreds of internet-facing assets simultaneously. It promises less than 1% false positives and helps you with the remediation process.

Key features include

  • Simulates hacker behavior to detect hidden vulnerabilities
  • Can test applications across languages
  • Precise remediation information


  • Offers DAST, SAST, and penetration testing services.
  • Provides detailed and comprehensive reports.
  • Provides automated remediation assistance.


  • Zero false positives are not assured. 
  • Could improve its user interface 
  • Can be difficult for beginners. 

13. Nikto


  • Platform: Linux
  • Scanner Capacity: Web applications, servers 
  • Manual pentest: No
  • Accuracy: False positives possible
  • Vulnerability management: No 
  • Compliance: No
  • Price: Open-source

Nikto is an Open Source web server scanner that performs comprehensive tests against web servers for multiple items, including over 6700 potentially dangerous files/programs, checks for outdated server versions, and version-specific problems on over 270 server versions, including Apache, MySQL, FTP, ProFTPd, Courier, Netscape, iPlanet, Lotus, BIND, MyDoom, and more. 

Key features include

  • Checks for 6000+ vulnerabilities
  • Detects version-specific problems


  • It is freely available to the public for use.
  • Available in Kali Linux.


  • Does not have a community platform.
  • Does not have a GUI.

14. Tripwire IP360


  • Scanner Capacity: Networks, and applications
  • Manual Pentests: No
  • Accuracy: False positives possible
  • Scan Behind Logins: Yes
  • Compliance: PCI-DSS, CIS, GDPR, HIPAA
  • Expert Remediation: Yes
  • Price: Quote on Request

IP360 by Tripwire is a powerful vulnerability assessment scanning tool for networks. It can scan a wide range of devices and programs running on a network and it also detects previously missed issues in on-premise devices, the cloud, and containers. It scores the vulnerabilities based on risk, ease of exploit, and impact.

Key features include

  • Discovery and profiling of network assets
  • Risk scoring and prioritization


  • Built-in NIST policy
  • Has strong detection capabilities.
  • Scalable architecture


  • Does not provide good remediation services.
  • Needs more integrations like Callico.

15. Netsparker


  • Scanner Capacity: Web applications and APIs
  • Manual Pentest: No
  • Accuracy: False Positives Possible
  • Scan Behind Logins: No
  • Vulnerability Management: Yes  
  • Compliance: PCI-DSS, HIPAA, OWASP, ISO 27001
  • Price: Quote on Request

Netsparker is a powerful, highly accurate, automated web app vulnerability scanner. It is the de-facto standard for detecting, locating, and reporting application security risks. One of the best-automated vulnerability scanning tools, Netsparker can be used to scan any web application regardless of the technology stack or development framework used. It is used by developers, auditors, and security professionals to improve the security of web applications.

Key features include

  • Scans apps regardless of the tech stack
  • Automated web app scanning


  • Lot of options to select security policies from
  • IAST enabled scans
  • Zero false positives


  • No support for 2FA and MFA apps
  • Slows down while scanning large applications 

16. W3AF


  • Platform: Windows, OS X, Linux, FreeBSD, OpenBSD
  • Scanner Capacity: Web applications
  • Manual pentest: No
  • Accuracy: False positives possibles
  • Vulnerability management: No
  • Compliance: No
  • Price: Open-source

W3AF is a Web Application Attack and Audit Framework. The framework is extensible with modules designed to be easy to configure and extend. The framework can either be used in a manual or automated way by using the API in the Python language.

Key features include

  • Ease of expansion
  • Cookie handling
  • Proxy support


  • Easy-to-use for beginners
  • Available freely.
  • Can also scan session-protected pages
  • Comes with a graphical interface


  • False positives are a possibility.
  • GUI can be difficult to navigate.

It is one small security loophole v/s your entire website or web application

Get your web app audited with Astra’s Continuous Pentest Solution

Factors In Choosing A Vulnerability Scanning Tool

1. Experience

Considering the experience of the company is essential when choosing good vulnerability assessment scanning tools. It ensures that they are capable of meeting your organization’s precise requirements. 

It also increases the trustworthiness and reliability of the vulnerability assessment scanning tool in customers, which can act as a deciding factor. 

2. Customer Support

This is an important specification to consider when opting for a vulnerability assessment scanner. 

  • Do they provide 24*7 customer support? Is it reliable? 
  • Do they resolve any queries remotely or via call quickly and in a hassle-free manner? 

These are some factors to consider with regard to customer support when picking the right tool. 

3. Compliance

  • Do they conduct compliance-specific scans and which compliances can the scanner help with? 
  • Does the tool offer a separate dashboard for compliances to be chosen and the results to appear?
  • Do they perform these services for important compliances like PCI-DSS, HIPAA, ISO 27001, and SOC 2?

Consider these questions when thinking about the compliances a scanning tool can help with.  

4. Features 

  • Do they offer unlimited vulnerability scans? 
  • Are re-scans carried out after remediation of flaws?
  • Do they offer gap analysis to find out the gaps in your organization’s security features? 
  • Is the scanner capable of carrying out scan-behind-logins and can it detect business logic errors easily?
  • Does the tool assure zero false positives and how does it ensure this?

Keep these questions in mind when considering the features of a possible selection amongst your list of vulnerability assessment scanning tools.  

5. Integrations

  • Does the tool provide scope for integration into the CI/CD pipeline? 
  • What all programs do the tool have integrations with? 

This is important since this feature allows projects in development to be phased from DevOps to DevSecOps. 

6. Regular Scans

Ensure that the tools offer continuous vulnerability scans to constantly monitor the security system. Such regular scans can track any vulnerabilities as and when they rise to enhance their security.  

7. Detailed Reports

  • Does the company provide extensive information about the vulnerabilities found?
  • Does it provide steps for remediation of found vulnerabilities?
  • Are the vulnerabilities categorized according to their risk severity and CVSS scores?
  • Do they provide POC videos (Proof of Concept) to help the development team patch the vulnerabilities? 
  • Do they provide compliance-specific detailed reports?

These are some questions that potential organizations that offer scanning tools need to answer.  

8. Easy Of Navigation

  • Is the vulnerability scanner dashboard easy to use? 
  • Does it show the vulnerability details without making them too difficult to understand?
  • Is the dashboard CXO-friendly? 
  • Does it allow collaboration between the scanning team and the organization’s development team?

Keeping these factors and associated questions in mind can greatly help in narrowing down the list of options one has for the vulnerability assessment scanning tools and ultimately aid in making the right choice. 

Attributes That Make Vulnerability Assessment Scanning Relevant

1. Detection Of Vulnerabilities

Vulnerability assessment scanning is an important security measure to conduct regularly since it helps in the detection of vulnerabilities. These vulnerabilities could be severe in nature and pose harm to an organization’s web applications, networks, and more. 

Timely detection of vulnerabilities results in their prioritized patching which helps in the upkeep of data security by keeping any malicious attacks at bay. 

2. Maintaining Compliance

Vulnerability assessment scanning can help achieve and maintain compliance. Most compliance requires vulnerability assessments to be done periodically. This is to ensure that there are no weaknesses in an organization’s security that is impeding compliance. 

Compliances like PCI-DSS, HIPAA, SOC 2, and ISO 27001 have slightly different requirements when it comes to security, and being non-compliant with them can lead to hefty fines and in extreme cases, criminal charges.

3. Enhanced Security

Carrying out periodic vulnerability assessment scans enhances one’s security posture and management system. This enhanced security increases the reliability and trustworthiness of your application. 

Immediate fixing of vulnerabilities assures the maintenance of security, compliance, and protection of confidential client data. 

Steps In Vulnerability Assessment Scanning Explained

VAPT Process

1. Scoping

This refers to setting the rules for scanning and involves understanding why the clients are looking for a vulnerability assessment scan. It also includes discovering the assets of the client that need to be scanned. 

Scoping stage heavily involves working with the client to understand and prepare the scan according to their needs and requirements. Not doing so can lead to legal troubles, missed assets, and ultimately, unsatisfied clients.

2. Vulnerability Scanning

In this step, automated vulnerability assessment scanning tools scan all allow assets to discover any vulnerabilities that might be lurking in them. The scan will make use of available databases like known CVEs, OWASP Top 10, and SANs 25 to compare and confirm the vulnerabilities found.

3. Prioritization

Once these vulnerabilities are found and listed, they are prioritized based on the risk severity using the CVSS (Common Vulnerability Scoring System). 

In this system, anything towards the range of 0-5 is considered to be less or moderately critical, while those vulnerabilities from 6-10 are considered highly critical and in need of immediate patching. 

4. Reporting

The report generated should elucidate the finding of the scan. It should list out and explain the vulnerabilities found with their corresponding CVSS scores and measures for remediation. 

It should also have details of all the steps carried out, the rules of engagement decided on initially, and finally a summary of the procedure. 

5. Remediation

This step is carried out by the organization’s development team based on the detailed report generated after the vulnerability scan. This can be done with the of aid a detailed report as well as through the provision of POC videos. 

6. Rescanning

Rescanning is an essential part of vulnerability scanning and remediation as this is a step that re-checks and verifies all the vulnerabilities and the patches made to ensure that there are no further flaws in security. 

Additional Read: A Complete Guide On Vulnerability Assessment Methodology


This article has explained what vulnerability assessment scanning is, the factors one needs to consider when opting for good vulnerability assessment scanning tools, and the steps taken by them for scanning. 

Additionally, the top 10 vulnerability assessment scanning tools have been mentioned in detail. Tools like Astra Pentest, Wireshark, BurpSuite, and more are integral in making one’s security system as secure and unbreachable as possible. So invest in your perfect security solution today and stay safe. 


1. What tool is the best for vulnerability assessment scanning?

Astra Pentest provided by Astra Security is one of the leading vulnerability assessment scanning tools available currently providing unlimited vulnerability scans and compliance checks.

2. What are the different types of vulnerability scanners available?

There are three different types of vulnerability scanners available.
1. Full Compliance Scans
2. Comprehensive Vulnerability Scans
3. Gap Analysis Scans

3. What are some open-source vulnerability scanners?

Wireshark and BurpSuite are some of the best freely available vulnerability scanners.

Nivedita James Palatty

Nivedita is a technical writer with Astra who has a deep love for knowledge and all things curious in nature. An avid reader at heart she found her calling writing about SEO, robotics, and currently cybersecurity.
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