A company’s virtual infrastructure is at risk if it is destroyed. After an attack, the speed at which you can recover your data and get back to work is directly impacted.
Virtualized infrastructure for data storage has become more commonplace in recent years. This approach is superior to physical solutions in flexibility, ease of provisioning, and affordability.
On the other hand, this model necessitates a comprehensive strategy for data security.
Since many tools and practices designed to safeguard physical data are ineffective in a virtual environment, the risk of data loss is significantly higher. You need to think outside the box when protecting your network from cyberattacks.
Continue reading if you use a virtualized infrastructure for data storage.
This article discusses the dangers of a lack of virtualized infrastructure security and offers advice on how to improve it.
Do not put your virtualized infrastructure at risk.
Virtualization security is crucial for every business’s security strategy. After all, we now live in a virtualized world. We need to protect all of its layers.
Let’s explore three of the most common virtualization security issues.
Attacks from the outside
These pose a significant threat to virtualized infrastructure.
Hackers who gain access to your host-level or server management software can quickly access other critical parts of your system. They can create a new user, assign admin rights, and then use that power to extract or destroy sensitive data from your company.
Issue # 2. Copy-pasting and sharing of files
Host and virtual machine (VM) sharing is turned off in most cases. Also, you can use the remote console and the VM to copy and paste data. However, tinkering with the ESXi host system’s default settings is not advised.
Having access to your management console would give a hacker complete control over your virtual environment, allowing them to copy data or install spyware on your virtual machine without your knowledge.
Issue # 3: VIRUSES
VMs are particularly vulnerable to ransomware, one of the most common forms of attack against them. It is critical to keep regular backups of your website data and store them in a secure, off-site location that hackers cannot decrypt.
Hackers may ask for money to decrypt your data if you don’t back up your files regularly.
Even with regular backups, restoring a VM can be problematic. As a result, you must provide your employees with training on how to minimize their exposure to ransomware and other viruses.
Increasing the Security of Your Virtualized Environment
As you’ve learned, the three most common threats to a company’s virtual infrastructure, here are four ways to improve its security.
TIP # 1. How to Control a Virtual Sprawl
Virtual sprawls are the growth of virtual environments. As your business grows, so does the importance of maintaining a secure environment for your virtual machines. There is, however, a limit to how much you can handle.
Take a look at the following tips to keep your virtual sprawl in check:
- Keeping an up-to-date inventory of your equipment is essential.
- Set up multiple-monitoring lookouts.
- Track IP addresses that have access to your VMs.
- Check for table locks.
- Do not use database grant statements to unauthorized users to avoid granting privileges.
- As a precaution, keep both local and off-site backups.
- Be sure to regularly assess your digital environment and eliminate any machines that aren’t necessary
- Do not forget to record any hardware actions in a central log!
- Keep all machines up to date with a patch maintenance schedule.
TIP #2. Aiming For Virtual Configuration Setups
If you use virtual servers, you are putting yourself at risk for significant configuration errors.
As a result, the initial setup must be secure; this includes ports, services, and vulnerabilities. If you don’t, the problems in one virtual machine will spread to all of them.
The reality is that many companies have incorrectly configured their virtual networks. Ensure all virtual applications that call the host (and vice versa) are properly segmented to avoid becoming one of those. Included in this are databases as well as any web-based tools.
Most virtualization platforms have only three switch security options: forged transmissions, MAC address changes, and promiscuous mode. Virtual systems that connect to other network areas have no protection.
As a result, it’s crucial to thoroughly investigate each virtualization platform that allows this type of communication, including memory leaks, copy-paste functions, and device drivers. You can also configure the system monitoring assets to look out for these paths.
TIP # 3: TOTAL INFRASTRUCTURE SECURITY
You must protect all of your infrastructure’s components thoroughly. A virtual and guest system runs on or on top of the physical components (switches, hosts, physical storage, routers). Never overlook your cloud systems.
Here are a few options for safeguarding various infrastructure elements:
- Ensure that your hosts are running the latest software. Up-to-date patches are a necessity for a virtualized infrastructure. In other words, make sure that all of your VMware software is up to date.
- Your routers, switches, and load balancers should all be running the latest firmware versions.
- Automatically update all operating systems and schedule automated reboots when you are not at work.
- All virtualized environments should have reliable anti-malware and antivirus software installed (and regularly updated).
TIP #4: THE CRITICAL ROLE OF A ROBUST BACKUP PLAN
Consider many factors when developing a disaster recovery (DR) and backup strategy for your business. Hacker attacks, hurricanes, and other natural disasters can affect your physical and virtual components.
A disaster recovery (DR) site in the cloud or a remote data center is ideal. If your critical data is compromised, you won’t have to worry about being shut down for long.
Keep your virtual machines and physical servers backed up as well. Fortunately, you can back up your Windows and Linux biological systems and your VMs, running on any OS.
You should also make at least three copies of your data and store two of them in different virtual places. Make sure you have an off-site copy of your backups, too.
You can replicate VMs to a different data center in the event of a failure in the primary data center.
PRIORITIZING YOUR VIRTUAL INFRASTRUCTURE SECURITY
If you’ve never given much thought to virtualized infrastructure security, you should start now. Given various potential threats, protecting your virtual machines (VMs) from unauthorized data sharing, viruses, and other attacks is critical.
To avoid problems, you must protect all aspects of your physical and virtual components. You’re not alone if this topic is all Greek to you. The truth is that many business owners have faced the same issue.
You can, however, contact us for a 15-minute consultation to discuss how you can take the security of your virtualized infrastructure to the next level.