March 13th, 2019
You can never be too cautious and careful when it comes to securing your data online. It is unfortunate that people have too much time on their hands and have taken up a full-time career in hacking. These attacks happen every day. Websites of any kind and nature are being targeted. Having a dedicated server for your data, you are already better off in terms of security than many other types of hosting. However, there are some steps you should be taking to add protection to your VPS or dedicated server wherever possible.
Every week, ensure that you are taking a look at any security updates and software patches and keeping them up to date. This should be performed at least twice a week. Never rely on letting your server or any software to inform you about updates. Actively seek them out yourself – always be proactive to ensure these updates are installed as soon as possible to reduce your chances of having your VPS or dedicated server becoming vulnerable to any attack.
When you sign in to your VPS or dedicated server with your credentials, make sure you are using a trusted network on your end. Make sure that your computer has the latest anti-virus and anti-malware software protection. Avoid public computers, public wifi, or any other unsecured network when logging into your VPS or dedicated server. If you have any other person than yourself accessing your VPS or dedicated server, ensure that they follow this same policy.
DDoS attacks are pretty frequent now, so there has never been a better time to have DDoS protection added to your VPS or dedicated server. DDoS protection will protect you against attacks that can otherwise bring your VPS or dedicated server down through the use of illegitimate traffic flooding. DDoS protection will provide an added layer of protection that mainly "filters" through your traffic to ensure that only legitimate visitors are allowed in.
Regular Data Backup
Even when taking all the security precautions possible, attacks and other security vulnerabilities can still occur. It is always a good idea to have a backup plan in place. You should be taking the time to back up all your most important data at least once a week, and perhaps more. If something were to happen to your site, you could at least restore it to its previous state with the backup data you have saved. Also, it is a good idea not just to keep your backup on your VPS or dedicated server. You should also download your backup to a second location. In this case, having redundant backups in place ensures that should your VPS or dedicated server go completely down with even hardware failure, you always have a backup in hand.
If Linux, Change SSH Port
One of the first things to do on your server is configuring the SSH service by changing the listening port. By default, the listening port is set up on port 22. This is an industry-standard, so it's advisable to change it to something other than the default value. Also, most server hacking attempts are made by robots that target port 22, so by modifying this setting, you'll make it harder for these robots to hack you, making your server a more difficult target.
Root/Administrator Password Change
It is strongly recommended that you change your root password (Linux) or administrative password (windows) regularly. By doing this, you are keeping vigilant in protecting your VPS or dedicated server’s primary administrative password. This should be done at least once every few months.
Configure Firewall Software
Make sure that you configure your VPS or dedicated server’s firewall software. Any unwanted port usage should be blocked. Its implementation and configuration allow protocols to be blocked before they even arrive on your VPS or dedicated server.