10-Point Checklist to Strengthen Your VPS Security

10-Point Checklist to Strengthen Your VPS Security

Virtual Private Server or VPS has become a popular hosting choice because of its flexibility, security, and performance at a lower price than most hosting options. 

But like any other hosting solution, VPS also has several vulnerabilities that hackers may seek to exploit. 

Read on to know how to secure VPS by following these handy tips and suggestions. 

1. Change your SSH default login credentials

Secure Shell Protocol (SSH) is a method commonly used to manage and gain access to servers. Hackers often target SSH ports via brute-force attacks to obtain remote access. 

You can change your SSH port to make it difficult for hackers to gain access to your server. Another simple method is to use a strong and unique password that contains a mix of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and special characters.

2. Disable root logins on your server

A server running on a VPS architecture always has ‘root’ as the default username. The root user has the most privileges and control over the server compared to other users. 

Hackers often exploit this. Hence, the best thing to do is to disable root logins on your server terminal. 

3. Always use the latest software available

Keeping your server software up to date is important to keep your VPS secure at all times. Updating your software will provide you with many security changes that will better protect your data, as well as a smoother and bug-free experience.

4. Set up a server firewall

One of the best ways to strengthen your VPS security is to install a firewall. 

A simple firewall can help you block certain IP addresses, detect patterns and block access, and update rules based on which users may or may not access your website.  

SiteLock by Big Rock offers an intuitive firewall that will help you defend your website against hackers.

5. Install an antivirus software

Installing an antivirus module or software on your server will provide additional security against hackers and data loss. 

Even in the presence of a firewall or other security protocols, malware and other viruses may enter your server and wreak havoc. 

If a separate antivirus plan isn’t your preference, you can consider a VPS hosting service such as Big Rock that offers built-in server security features.

6. Use Fail2ban

Fail2ban is a Python-based software that helps identify and prevent brute-force attacks, DoS attacks, and other common hacking techniques.  

The software constantly monitors your server logs and alerts you if it detects any form of multiple failed logins, data injection, or exploitation. 

7. Replace FTP with SFTP

While File Transfer Protocol (FTP) is a convenient way to move files, it’s widely regarded as outdated and risky. All data transferred over FTP is in clear text, meaning it’s vulnerable to packet sniffing. 

That’s why switching to Secure FTP (SFTP) for all your server communications is a must. SFTP encrypts all data and information, making sure no unauthorized person can read them. 

8. Periodically review user access

Since it’s unlikely you’re the only one with access to your VPS hosting server, it’s crucial you regularly review the kind of control and access other users have to the server.  

You can monitor user activity, grant or deny file permissions, or restrict access to protect sensitive data and ensure optimal VPS security.

9. Remove unwanted modules and packages

The more modules, software, and packages you install in your VPS, the more avenues you open up for hackers to exploit. 

Keep your server simple and remove any modules or software you don’t use to limit the risks of hacking and data loss.

10. Keep an eye on your server logs

Monitoring your server logs regularly gives you insight into resource usage, significant events, user activities, and errors. This allows you to identify any potential issue with your server before it snowballs into a bigger, disruptive problem.  

Apart from this, it’s also helpful to take regular backups of your data to prepare for the worst-case scenarios. 

Prevent Attacks on Your Server 

While no server can be absolutely impenetrable, following the above tips helps you keep it as secure as possible. Remember to never compromise on server security. Any sort of security failure can spell disaster for your website.  

For a more stress-free hosting experience, leverage a fully managed VPS hosting service that offers the best combination of user-friendliness, efficiency, and security for your website. 


An Author and Content Marketer @Endurance International Group (APAC), Aastha believes that great content drives action and helps businesses be more influential. With the experience of working with businesses globally, she understands the need to create tailor-made content solutions that are relevant, strong and create an impact for the right audience.