One of the most common concerns a developer faces is a web server attack. Some of these attacks may comprise a denial of service, rendering a website unavailable, or theft of critical and sensitive information of the site’s users, such as passwords, credit car details, email addresses, and many more.
Hence, web server security is of paramount importance for IT professionals. For website and blog owners who have scant knowledge about server security, here are some tips to help you gain a bit of understanding on the issue.
1. Use separate servers for internal and external users, and for testing and debugging.Although having a separate server for internal users entails extra expense, it’s worth it to block external users from access to sensitive information of your website. Clients and customers of ecommerce sites, corporations, and institutions have no business getting into the internal users’ server, but internal users can be allowed access to the external server to enable them to resolve issues that arise regarding customer service or experience.
Having a different server for the people designated to create and manage the website and its contents will not affect customer experience since both types of users have vastly different purposes and goals.
If you can only have one server due to budget constraints, you can use process isolation to prevent accidental or intentional interaction between internal and external applications. Another method is to create a specific IP address on your web server which will allow access only for admin or internal users. Using a VPN will allow you to do this, thereby reducing security vulnerabilities. Click on http://blokt.com/guides/5-best-vpns-for-torrenting to select a good VPN.
- Separating the testing environment from production seems like the practical thing to do. Yet many companies overlook this security process and allow their IT specialists to tweak code or develop new programs directly on the production server.
The consequences of having a shared server for testing and production are disastrous. An erroneous app can make the site malfunction and cause a site outage or make it “hang.” Worse, it can make your site vulnerable to breaches or malicious attacks.
2. Do a website audit on a regular basis.
Auditing your website can put you ahead of your competitors since you will be tackling and troubleshooting internal and external problems and optimizing your site for Google. A comprehensive initial audit may take weeks, depending on the site size and the tools you use. Guides to web auditing vary but generally, do a follow-up review after three months, then after every six months thereafter. Follow-up checks are easier to do and less time-consuming.
The basic auditing guide consists of audits on the following: technical, on-page SEO, off-page SEO, user experience, and content and funnel.
3. Keep storage of logs secure physically and virtually yet available and accessible if needed. Activity logs are critical for history and forensics, as in legal cases. Follow best practices for secure storage and retrievability.
4. Delete unnecessary services, applications, modules and extensions. On the default Apache server or on Microsoft’s web server, many of these software are pre-installed and enabled. A developer will determine which are essential and which are nonessential. Services and software that are not wanted or needed should be removed from the server to limit the openings for malicious activity.
5. Manage privileges for the various users that access the web server. Permits for users should be contained only to allow them to perform their specific function. Assigning the least privileges for a network service to run will give added security and manage vulnerability.
6. Software sellers usually release updates to protect their products from vulnerabilities. Admins should keep their web servers patched whenever they receive the patches to fix any weaknesses and bugs.