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Keeping your database safe and secure is one of the most important things you can do. Hackers tend to target databases that hold a great deal of sensitive information, such as credit card numbers and social security numbers. The more profitable information your database holds, the more attractive it will be to hackers.

Fortunately, there are many steps you can take to ensure your database is secure. While no one is ever fully protected from a cyber attack, criminals look for easy opportunities. Robust database security is also important to help prevent database corruption.

Here are five ways to secure your database.

1. Store Your Database and Web Server Separate

It’s recommended to store your database separate from your web server. If a hacker is able to crack the administrator account for the web server, they can also access your database. When setting up your database, put it on a separate server that is located behind a firewall. This is more complicated and time-consuming, but it’s worth it in the long run.

2. Encrypt Stored Files

Encrypt all of your stored files, as these files contain sensitive information that hackers can use to access your database. Too often, default installations store these files in plain text and users aren’t aware. Take the extra step to encrypt these files. You should also encrypt your backups for the same reason – sensitive information can be accessed by people within your organization.

3. Use a Web Application Firewall (WAF)

Web application firewalls are firewalls for HTTP applications. By protecting the web server, you’re also protecting your database. A WAF is different from a traditional firewall because it’s able to filter the content of specific applications. Standard firewalls are a safety gate between servers.

4. Limit Third Party Apps

Apps and plugins come in handy for certain applications, but do limit your use of them. Interactive widgets and sidebars pull from the database and open you up to potential problems. Use only the apps and plugins that are necessary to run your database, and be sure that they are updated as necessary.

5. Avoid Using a Shared Server

Lastly, it’s best not to use a shared server. Yes, it’s the cheaper and easier option, but it opens you up to security issues. When you share a server, you’re counting on your hosting provider to keep your data secure. If you have no other choice but to share, choose a reliable hosting provider and ask about their policies and what happens if your data is compromised.

To fully protect your database, you need a firm strategy in place that may include additional staff and resources. It’s worth it to protect your data, manage your reputation and comply with the security laws in your state. Find out how secure your database is by calling Arkware today.