The Importance of Server Hardening – Part 1. Introduction and Types of Infrastructure

(Editor’s note: this post was originally published in the Spanish version of Security Art Work on 1st July 2019)

Today we publish the first of three articles courtesy of Jorge García on the importance of server hardening. Jorge introduces himself as follows: “Although I am officially a systems administrator and responsible for security in the company where I work, the truth is that my job is also my hobby. I am a big fan of geek computing, defensive security, deploying my own servers and any DIY process that poses new learning challenges as I fend for myself to solve problems. Evolution is my passion.”

All companies, regardless of the field in which they are developed, have, to a greater or lesser extent, an IT infrastructure of servers that store and process corporate information of vital importance to the business. The question that always assails me is: if this information is so important, why does experience tell us that it is so frequent that companies do not keep their servers, applications and equipment updated and properly hardened?

It is well known that a large part of companies do not take computer security seriously. Without going any further this report published three months ago indicates that 7 of the 10 most exploited vulnerabilities during 2018 were between 1 and 6 years old; or this other report that indicates that a large number of companies do not patch their systems quickly. This is because, companies think that they are not targeted by hiding behind the typical “my company is small and has nothing attractive to hackers” thinking, or because they do not have or do not consider it necessary to have staff resources and tools to keep the platform updated. Or at least they don’t do it until it’s too late, and that’s what I’m going to talk about in today’s post. It’s a true story. Let’s go with a little background.

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