- Generally, system hardening refers to a combination of tools and techniques for controlling vulnerabilities in systems, applications, firmware, and more in an organization.
- The purpose of system hardening is to decrease the security risks by reducing the potential attacks and condensing the system’s attack surface.
The following are the various types of system hardening:
- Database hardening
- Operating system hardening
- Application hardening
- Server hardening
- Network hardening
Most computers offer network security features to limit outside access to the system. Software such as antivirus programs and spyware blockers prevent malicious software from running on the machine. Yet, even with these security measures in place, computers are often still vulnerable to outside access. System hardening, also called Operating System hardening, helps minimize these security vulnerabilities.
The purpose of system hardening is to eliminate as many security risks as possible. This is typically done by removing all non-essential software programs and utilities from the computer. While these programs may offer useful features to the user, if they provide “back-door” access to the system, they must be removed during system hardening.