Database security is the way of protecting the data from threats, unallowed persons, and security issues. It is a cycle that incorporates methods to safeguard databases and data loss from intruders.
Data security includes everything that makes your data secure from threats. These are some types of data security:
- Masking and so on
To get more from the data security types and implementation, one should keep in mind the database security best practices that will help you make your data safer than before.
- Database Security Best Practices Checklist
- Database Security Issues and Threats
- Importance of Database Security
Database Security Best Practices Checklist
Here are some database security best practices that an organization or business can follow to take their data security to another level:
Always use different servers for database and web applications. Alternatively, the database should be kept on different physical machines and web applications on a separate one.
The reason is that web servers more likely to be hacked as they are accessible publicly. If someone attacks and hacks the webserver then he can also access the database as a root user.
Using Firewalls and Web Application
Firewalls are a must for the protection of the database from security threats. A firewall automatically blocks or rejects access to traffic. It only allows requests that are from reliable sources or have permission to access the data.
Along with database firewalls, web application firewalls are also beneficial as they prevent the threats like SQL injection that the database firewall does not recognize because it receives these from an allowed resource.
Limited User Access to a Database
The database remains safe if there are a smaller number of allowed users. There is a threat of data breaches if many people have access to the database. So, always limit the number of user access to the database.
Now, a problem arises for those who are a large organization and need more user access. The simplest solution to this is the access management software that provides a temporary password to the allowed user.
Your Operating system and database notify you about new updates from time to time. Never ignore these updates. Keep your database software and OS updated with security patches that are important for the protection against vulnerabilities.
With these upgrades, make sure you enable all security controls except those you have intentionally disabled for any reason.
The major reason to run updates as soon as the system notifies you is to have a strong defensive force against the intruders, as a new update means there are some alternative ways of hacking in the market.
Track Database Activities
Monitoring database activities help in spotting the change in the database account, data, or any other activity. The organization should follow some effective monitoring practices so that they can know if any activity is compromising security, the employee is doing any suspicious activity, or account creation/deletion.
There are some database activity monitoring tools that monitor the database independently without logging functions.
Another way of tracking is auditing your database. It simply means that try to hack your database once you have protected it with all measures. This is the best way to check security.
Encryption and Backup
The organization usually follows the encryption processes and considers it as a standard procedure for storing data. Always backup your database regularly and store it at a different place rather than placing it in the same place where decryption keys are stored.
When an organization regularly backups and encrypts data, it protects your database as well as prevents it from other failures.
Encryption not only defends against hackers but also the employees. No one can read the data without the decryption/encryption keys.
Email encryption is important too.
Secure Physical Servers
This is quite simple, yet a necessary practice for database security. At the very first, secure your physical servers through CCTV cameras, digital locks, 24/7-hour monitoring, BIOS password, locking workstation, and not allowing an unauthorized person to enter. Less physical security sometimes results in compromise of data and even sometimes network as well.
Reliable and Trustable Database Software
Every business or organization uses different database software. It can be open source or paid one.
The software runs on the active devices and removes inactive accounts or devices automatically and install patches from time to time. It is important to study closely the database software you are going to use or using right now. Ensure that they keep their codes secure as much as they can.
Monitor Insider Threats
Based on the survey conducted by Netwrix, 60% of insider attacks, the accounts and organizations do not report these incidents to maintain their reputation and business loss.
So, it is very much necessary to have some policy against insiders as well. Mostly all organizations force on external threats rather than securing their database system from the insiders. So, this practice is a must.
Put video cameras with sensors in your company and monitor all activities of the essentials spots in your company.
This way, you will prevent unauthorized people from stealing your sensitive data and taking a picture of confidential information
Database Security Issues and Threats
When one talks about the database, he should also consider the high risk of threats and security issues. Commonly database security issues and threats are:
Excessive User Privileges:
When an employee is granted more privileges than they require for their job, it may lead to insider threat.
Database injection attacks are of two types: SQL injection attacks the database system and NoSQL injection attacks the big data platforms.
Malware virus is malicious software that takes away crucial data.
Exposure of Storage:
This is a threat to the backup that most organizations leave unprotected.
This issue occurs when the organization does not install patches on time. Unpatched databases are easy to get exploited.
Most of the errors or threats are because of human ignorance of minor issues. The organization should train the employees about how to react to threats and keep a check on them.
Importance of Database Security
Database security is as important as using a database for the organization. Data security is essential for the collected data and safeguarding it against the threats and compromises on it.
If there will be no database security, an organization can have a financial loss, poor reputation, data breaching, and brand exploitation. Data security is important because:
- It makes protects the data
- Prevents data loss
- Safeguards data from threats
- Provides a checklist of to-do things
- Ensures organization’s reputation
Data security matters the most: either you are an extensive business or a small firm because data has equal importance for everyone.
Mostly organization uses some automated tools to perform this security task, which is no doubt a good practice, but there are some other database security best practices that we have listed above to ensure the security of your database.