19 Jan 2018

Is Your Data Safe On A CDN?

When using technologies like caching and multi-node distribution, a content delivery network (CDN) can significantly reduce a website’s load time. Rather than serving data from a single static server, it serves data from a network of servers to reduce congestion and improve performance. With data stored on multiple servers, though, you might be wondering about CDN security.

The Security Concerns of CDNs

CDNs work by caching online content — websites or apps — on multiple servers and prioritizing its delivery based on the client’s geographic location, server demand and other factors. It’s not uncommon for CDNs to distribute content using dozens of Points of Presence (POP). As a result, there are more nodes through which a hacker may infiltrator the network and steal a user’s data. Thankfully, you can safeguard your data on a CDN by following the tips outlined here:

CDN Safety: Where to Start

There are several ways to protect your data from cyber threats when using a CDN, beginning with setting a URL signing. This is a token authentication, meaning only requests with a valid token (also referred as signature, secure or hash) are allowed to access your content. Additionally, the token can contain an expiration time and gives the ability to allow/deny IP addresses, making sure your content is only delivered to verified individuals.

SSL for Stronger CDN Security

Opting for a CDN provider with Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) encryption, like CDNsun, can also protect your data from cyber threats. This security protocol standard encrypts data transferred between the PoP and client, ensuring that only the intended client can access the data. Using SSL, all transmitted data is scrambled so it’s indecipherable without the associated decryption key.

Choose the Right CDN Provider

Of course, choosing a reputable, trustworthy CDN provider can further reduce the risk of data breaches and cyber threats. Some CDN providers neglect to update their servers’ operating systems and software, resulting in security vulnerabilities that hackers can exploit. Hackers specifically target networks running outdated software because they are easier to crack.

Given the rise of cyber attacks in recent years, every webmaster and app developer should make CDN security a priority, and following these tips are a great way to do that.