Good security is good system administration. Security is a fundamental part of running a reliable network server. Undoubtedly, your server will be attacked and compromised by people on the network. Your job is to reduce the number of successful attacks, to limit the amount of damage done, and to quickly recover from the attack. This chapter will help you do your job.

This is a book about Linux network servers, so it focuses on network security threats. Despite this emphasis, you should remember that network security is only part of the overall security of your system:

• Physical security is required to protect the server hardware and to prevent unauthor-ized access to the system console.

• Filesystem security, which is described in Chapter 9, "File Sharing," is necessary to protect the data on the server.

For a broader view of security, see Linux Security by Ramón Hontañón (Sybex, 2001). The focus of this chapter on network security is not meant to downplay the importance of physical and filesystem security, but security threats originating from the network are a major source of Linux server problems. This chapter describes those threats, and tells you how to face them.

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