News about the recent proposals by the European Commission covering cyber security have raised awareness about computer and server security. Whether you run a large company or small business with a server-based home network, securing the server against threats is a must. Numerous strategies work together to secure networks, computers, and servers. One component is server security software. Numerous developers offer server security software with various features and tools. Here's how some of the more common server security software, in its various forms, works to protect data and systems.

Server Security Antivirus and Antimalware Software

Like standalone computers, servers must have a strong defense against threats from computer viruses and malware. Server security software focused on blocking, finding, and removing these threats is essential. This type of software works by scanning the server's hard disk and RAM for signs of suspicious behaviors and known threats. It connects regularly with the software developer to download software and definition updates. When it encounters suspicious or known files, it compares the patterns to data in the definition database. Known threats are removed or contained depending on your preferences. Most modern server security software also features real-time blocking of known threats.

Server Firewalls

Server firewalls add another layer of security to the server. Some server operating systems, such as Windows Server 2008 with its advanced firewall MMC snap-in, have a built-in firewall. With a host-based firewall, you can create rules that apply to inbound and outbound traffic, protocols, and ports. For example, if an inbound connection does not match a rule you've set up, it can be blocked. Software firewalls can serve as a secondary line of defense if your primary defense has failed to block intruders.

Server Monitoring Software

In addition to scanning for viruses and malware, server security software designed to monitor the system is also commonly used. This type of software is primarily focused on server performance and fixing issues before they become major problems. However, server monitoring detects anomalies that could also be symptoms of hacking or a malware infection.

Port Control

Some server security applications include the ability to lock down access to its ports or ports on connected computers. For example, if an unauthorized USB device is connected to a port, port control can block it completely, prevent copying of data to the device, or prevent malware from being launched from the device.

Server Encryption

What if a burglar breaks into your data center and makes off with your server? All of the data stored on its hard drive would be readily accessible – even data that has been deleted thanks to the widespread availability of low-cost data recovery software. Encryption is a form of server security software that neutralizes this threat. With hard disk encryption, the entire contents of the hard disk are indecipherable to anyone who does not hold the "key." Not all encryption software offers full disk encryption; some offer encryption at the file and folder level only. Ideally, you should encrypt the entire disk and use server software that includes pre-boot authentication which prevents attempts to bypass encryption before bootup completes.

Author's Bio: 

Daniel is the author of this article on how server security-software works, where he discusses some of the recent proposals by the European Commission covering cyber security have raised awareness about computer and server security (Source: Computer-und Netzwerksicherheit by WinMagic). In his free time he enjoys spending it with his family or going to his beach house in Florida.