Posted on May 16, 2014 · Posted in VPS

A Virtual Private Server is a big step up from your average shared web hosting service, offering a range of additional features and abilities. One of the bigger differences between shared and VPS hosting is the responsibilities you, as the VPS user, has on the virtual private server that you normally wouldn’t need to worry about or deal with on a shared service – unless of course you opt for a fully managed VPS solution.

One issue that can arise from the additional control you have over the VPS is that of security. Specifically, certain applications you install or particular set-up and configurations can potentially expose your website or partition to a range of threats. For the most past, good Web Hosts will manage much of the back-end security for you as a way to ensure their servers remain in good standing. However, there are many additional precautions that you can take to ensure your virtual private server is as secure as possible.

VPS Security

1. Strong Passwords
The use of a strong password is essential to anything to do with the internet nowadays, whether it be for your internet banking, email account or obviously a web hosting account. When setting the password for your VPS control panel you should be opting for something containing a minimum of 8 characters which includes the following:

  • A mix of numbers and letters
  • A mix of lowercase and uppercase letters
  • Inclusion of special characters such as underscores and hyphens

You should also avoid using any dictionary words or passwords that you have used on other websites.

2. Keep Your VPS Up To Date
One of the most obvious tasks for you to undertake is that of updating your servers operating system and applications on a regular basis. Many updates released by vendors include bug fixes, security patches and new features with an overall improvement.

3. Disable Services Not In Use
One of the benefits of a virtual private server is the ability to control the availability of the many services and daemons that are normally required with a hosting services. For example, should you not require email functionality, you can switch of the server mail service which will not only provide less attack surfaces on the server but also provide you with additional memory.

4. Regular Backups
Something you should be doing with any of your online assets is the creation of regular back ups. Backing up your website, server or application on a regular basis ensures that you have the ability to rollback to a recent version of your server should the inevitable happen. There are many backup tools available, both free and paid, that will do the job. Alternatively, most good web hosting companies will also offer a backup service that can be integrated with your VPS.

Keep It Secure

Although the chances of facing a security exploit is low, it’s always good practice to ensure you are taking the right steps to keep your virtual server as secure as possible. The above steps are a good start and will, for the most part, keep your web presence safe and secure.

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