Web server security is one of the most important things you should pay close attention to. A lot of vulnerabilities are there associated with strict security. Whenever a hacker tries to get into your website’s internal data, they plan to attack the server and then get internal data access.
Hardening your web server security is essential to secure web servers from unauthorized access. Otherwise, you’re giving an open door to hackers and intruders. Hackers and intruders are always looking around for a chance to identify weak web server security layers to hijack the panel.
As per research, if your website’s server security is not strong, hackers can quickly get into the server. They can disturb the server databases, alter the content, and create massive damage. Moreover, they can steal confidential information of clients and black them later.
Linux web server security is fragile, and you’ve to work hard to maintain the security. Ultimately, you have to reach the best web development company to fasten your web server security. It’s the developer’s responsibility to keep the website’s security strong, saving it from unauthorized access.
In this blog, we will have a detailed analysis of web server security’s best practices. For this purpose, I have dedicated an entire section. Let’s proceed further!
Table of Contents
What is a Web Server? How to Secure a Web Server?
A web server is not a device where you can employ your network, instead unlike other web server security devices, it sits at the rim of your networks, designed to share data with the outside world, regardless of who and from where you’re logging.
Therefore, web server hardening is the most critical task for hardening a web server from hackers. Undoubtedly, the webserver is the first place where hackers plan their target without giving any indication. I hope this section explains enough about a web server and how important it is to keep it secure from unauthorized access. Without any precautions and proper protection, secure web server become weak, giving hackers the foothold they need the most for accessing the servers.
A Quick Overview – How to Secure a Web Server
If you wish to secure the web server of your business website, then follow these quick steps today:
1. Properly Segmented Environment
Website development and testing are done on production servers that are connected to public servers, increasing the risk of security breaches and giving open doors to hackers to inject malicious code and disturb the overall performance. However, you can secure your web server from intruders and minimize data breach risks by keeping all of your development and testing servers totally isolated from the public servers and by restricting connections to important databases.
2. Role-based privileges and permissions
If you give equal access to all the users on the server, then, anyone can get into the important data, and manipulate the data. The possible way out is to give role-based privileges to users, and don’t give anyone access to backend databases, unless they are security experts dealing with all the internal server activities.
3. Tracking server logs
A network security specialist will always run regular security tests to store all the server logs in a segmented manner. Once done, they can investigate the unusual log files and unsuccessful login attempts that were made on that particular day.
4. Automate backup
You can never know when a disaster could happen and wipe out all of the important server data. As a precaution, a network security expert should analyze the backup process daily and see if there is any road blocker that stops the backup process.
5. Remove unnecessary services from the web server
There are various network services available in the default installation package that won’t be in use, and will just increase the chances of violating security practices. A system security expert will never allow unnecessary service ports to stay open and give hackers the opportunity to inject malicious code into them. This is best practice, and it will even increase the performance of your server, which is the primary expectation from any website.
Web Server Security Best Practices: Hardening Web Server
A quick look inside into the most beneficial web server best practice to keep you safe from cyberattacks, leading towards web hosting security. Many SQL injections, session management attacks, and failure in installing any security plugin may lead to security breaches. Organizations can get their private data hacked because of weak website hosting security, and hacking web servers.
Let’s look at some of the web server security best practices to maintain a high chance of safety from web server hack!
1. Disabling The Web Server Signature
Hackers and intruders commonly begin to attack any web server by sending remote requests that pull out all the necessary information on the server signature. This is also known as a server footer, so the best way around is to disable the server signature leading to web server security maintenance and preventing server hacking. However, if you want to protect your Apache web server, go to the web server security configuration file, modify the code, and add a command,’ ServerSignature Off’ or ‘ServerTokens Prod.’
2. Hardening A Security Web Server
No matter how much attractive the aesthetics of your website are. Hackers first attack your host, which means the machine running on your website. Hardening the security web server is critical. Otherwise, the door for hackers is always open!
For instance, if your web server is relatively weak, and your website is installed, it’s an easy target for any hacker. Hackers can easily provoke your server security and disturb the working of the website.
Many hackers roll up their sleeves and work deeply in attacking the website’s server management. Potential hackers work keenly to disturb the server management first and then go down into the management.
But no worries, we’re here to help you in keeping your web server security strong. Let’s first discuss how the hack is done! Safe from hackers and intruders looking for a loophole.
How are Hackers Attacking Website Hosting Security?
- Hackers are optimistic and opportunistic. They make an attack script and inject it into your website’s server. If your website server security is weak, then it’s an easy target for them.
- Hackers are using an array of security breaching tools. It all starts with exploitation, leading toward the final attack.
- Firstly, the hacker learns about the webserver security weakness and then goes with plugin investigation once they recognize the plugins and learn about the footprint.
- After this point, scraping google for building a list of hackable sites is relatively easy! Hackers are coders with extensive knowledge of coding. They write a malicious script and inject it into the server.
- Once done, they analyze the results, and in fact, someplace links for generating traffic. They start earning money from an unknown website, invoking web server security.
The website is being hacked again and again. Some hackers are hacking websites for the thrill, while some are professionals hired for this activity. They’re so professional in hacking that they can easily hack the website.
3. Utilization Of Security Fasten Tools
As a victim of web server security, you must be thinking about where this weakness comes from, and how can you refrain from this. Want to secure web servers from hackers? Then you can use log server access and limit it to users. Like, Apache and Windows servers are by default not configured to capture login information of users, no matter how many devices they’re logging. Apache servers have logs that fulfill the organization’s specific needs and are sent directly to an external server. The best way is to crosscheck the webserver security checklist mentioned already in the end for you!
The previous section discusses how hackers perform hacking on website and secure HTTP servers. Let me explain it to you whenever a WordPress plugin is released. Hackers also learn about their work and results. They’re always fascinated by invading security and getting deep into the layers.
Hackers are coders with an optimistic approach toward scripts. Code goes in a single way, input, processing, and output. The hacker follows the same practice. They input the code into the plugin, process it, and wait for the explosion.
The result will be so dangerous that a highly maintained website can lose its original value, making it harder for them to retain back.
The best way out is to utilize security fasten tools. WordPress has fantastic visuals and comes with a variety of plugins. We’ve got a theory in mind, using a command shell, and fastening the web server security.
However, it’s a primitive approach for controlling the machine you’ve hosted your website. You can use SSH – secure shell command for managing security.
What is SSH? How does it help in web server security management?
SSH, term as security shell or secure socket shell, is a network security protocol. It is a suite of utilities necessary for implementing the protocol. SSH offers an encrypted password authentication and key for the users. The conversation between the user and destination is performed in an encrypted way.
SSH command is used widely by network engineers to fasten the web server security. SSH uses client service management. However, upload files on the FTP program if you don’t want to spend hours editing files.
An alternative way is to choose services from Cloud 9. It is a complete cloud-based IDE for Linux web server security. It’s proficient for debugging and testing, leading towards solid security.
Always remember this cycle; to refrain your website from hacking.
- In the worst-case scenario, hackers exploit first, leading to massive damages.
- In rare cases, hackers publish the scripts, expecting coders to fix them.
- Further, they contacted the original developer asking them to fix it.
For your information, let me tell you the one more important thing. Hackers publish exploit first before the fix has been published.
Exploits are launched first for public knowledge. However, the fixes take time for developers to create. Often, teamwork is required to test the changes. The developer has to work very carefully. A slight change in the code would weaken the webserver security, opening the doors for hackers.
4. Website Server Major Attributes
We’ve already discussed the hacking procedures and tools to secure it. But for your understanding, let’s discuss the security basics to save your website from the hacked.
Want to know the key ingredients of cyber security management? Here you go;
Understand Your Machine
Securing your website is a secondary step; the first is to understand your machine working. You need to have an in-depth understanding of your website for creating a security strategy.
Usually, developers miss this point and plan the webserver security strategy, which fails ultimately. The deeper you understand your website working mechanism, the more quickly you’ll identify issues if any; and fix them.
If you have security knowledge, then it will complement your basic understanding of the website. You can quickly fix any error if found have prior knowledge of network security and machines.
Next, we have the least privileges, which means the roles and responsibilities. There should be fewer individuals who possess access to internal website data. In ideal cases, writers, web developers, and SEO managers have exclusive rights.
One of the biggest threats to web server security is the broad privileges provided to the people.
Writers should have the right to write and upload content. They shouldn’t have the right to install any WordPress security or theme plugins.
The lead manager has to understand who is performing what activities over the website. The website managers should not give them extra access, more than what they’re responsible for!
In-Depth Defense Layers
To harden your security web server, utilize maximum security protocols. Remember, the more security layers you deploy on a secure web server. The harder it is for the hacker to break and hurt your website security! Never use just one security layer to secure your website from hacking.
In simple words, never restrict yourself to a single website plugin. More complex your security layers as much as possible, making it impossible for the hacker to get into the system.
Protection Is The Key
Indeed protection is the key to security but never stay in a relaxed mode. Keep your eyes and ears open for any uncertain situation. It would help if you always had a plan B in case of any malicious attack.
We’re standing in 2021, and still, there is no guarantee to maintain security. Web server security is related to the layers of protocols you deploy and how updated you’re keeping your onsite layers.
For example, reputed websites face hacking issues. The team needs to keep themselves updated and know the tricks for handling sudden attacks.
Always Keep An Eye On Your Enemy
Whenever you enter any business, you have got a list of competitors. Those competitors are your natural enemies, crafting strategies to disturb your website image. We think hacker doesn’t have the time to understand our business – that’s our biggest fault.
However, companies hire hackers to hack the competitor’s data. You have to understand the tricks to disallow them, breaking web server security layers.
5. Understand How Web Security Works?
We usually have a misconception that WordPress is the only thing visible to hackers for hacking. However, the server environment is very complex and possesses millions of moving parts.
Security exploitation starts from the first stage of the technology stack, scaling upwards. As per WP White Security, 41% of the hacking activities occur on WordPress websites. You need to take out time and dive deep into the webserver security layers.
Password hacking is one of the easiest things in hacking. Out of 50%, 41% of hacking occurs through web hosting, and the rest, 9%, are because of weak passwords. Hackers are more towards servers.
Understand your webserver working, apply concepts on the platforms, and implement them on the security layers. Implementation might take some days, but you’ve to be very careful. Playing with web server security is not easy!
A kernel is the heart of your Linux program. It’s the operating system and runs the entire process. It manages all the processes, provides the resources, and stops them if required.
Web server security is all you need to focus on while website maintenance. Trust yourself and your skills. Anonymous readers visit your website to read blogs. Are you sure they’re right? To control this, you need a policy to control the working of your machine.
What is a web server security scan?
A web server security scan refers to an automated software designed to search all the security vulnerabilities. With this scan, you are able to identify all the issues within the web server, proxy servers, and web applications. These are dynamic and can be scanned easily.
How do I check my website security?
You can check the website security using these quick steps:
- First, check the ‘SSL Certificate’.
- Analyze if the site has a modern theme.
- Use security tools to evaluate the website.
- Check the URL of the website again.
- Find how many people own the website domain.
- Escape spam.
Which security protocol is used only to protect a session between a web browser and a web server?
Transport layer security, also known as TLS, is a comprehensive safety security protocol. Its principal role is to facilitate privacy and encrypt data packets for communication over the Internet. Engineers use TLS for protecting the session between a web browser and a web server.
Wrapping Up | Web Server Security
Web server security management is critical! Today, everyone is afraid of hacking. Hackers are coders with optimistic knowledge about code. Weak servers are straightforward to attack, leading to exploitations.
Moreover, if you wish to keep your WordPress website safe from any malicious attacks, secure them, covering all the points discussed. I try to bring out the best results that help our audience grab in-depth understanding. Although if you have some more questions, then feel free to post them in the comment section.