8 Key Threats a Database Security Administrator Must Deal With

database security administrator

Data security threats are not uncommon these days. They can destroy the integrity, confidentiality, and availability of data. Such threats can come from natural disasters, hackers, insiders, and human errors.

What happens when there’s a data breach? It can lead to irreparable losses for a business. However, security breaches aren’t limited to large companies having deep pockets. These can happen anywhere.

Businesses must pay large sums to recover data, legal fees, and fines and reduce downtime. The biggest threat is the compromise of intellectual property when trade secrets get stolen.

What is the role of a database security administrator?

Whenever we discuss database security, we discuss ways to preserve data confidentiality, data accessibility, and database integrity. The prime responsibility of a DBA or database administrator is to ensure that the information stored in a database is secure.

Database security will include data in DBMS or database management systems, applications accessing data in databases, hardware servers, network access points, virtual database servers, etc.

It’s a lot of responsibility, and amateurs shouldn’t be assigned the task. Businesses need people qualified for the job.

Threats that database administrators must be ready to deal with:

If security protocols are overly stringent, accessing data is a problem. Database security administrators focus on finding the right balance between data accessibility and security. They invest in a robust database monitoring system, assign tiers for data access, and establish relevant security protocols.

  1. Insider Threats: This usually happens when there’s a malicious user causing harm intentionally. It may also occur when a database is left open to attacks because of human errors, like weak passwords or sharing passwords. Furthermore, an external hacker can get a user’s credentials and attack the database through phishing.
  2. Malware: IoT (Internet of Things) devices are more vulnerable to this since they are usually not upgraded with the latest security patches.
  3. Software loopholes: Hackers look for security loopholes and vulnerabilities in the database software. When a business doesn’t apply security patches regularly,  databases are vulnerable.
  4. Denial of Service attacks: This happens when target services are overburdened. With too many requests, the server can’t handle the legit ones. DoS (Denial of Service) attacks can lead to a website crash.
  5. SQL/NoSQL injection attacks: In this, cyber criminals target a NoSQL or SQL database by adding strings to its queries.
  6. Buffer overflow exploitations: Hackers use excess data from a buffer overflow to trigger attacks. It happens when any process tries to write more data to blocks than they can hold.
  7. Backup attacks: When backup data isn’t protected, it can be compromised. It usually happens to old backups on physical drives and cloud-based backups.
  8. Social engineering attacks: These trick users into sharing sensitive information. They can happen over emails, phone calls, or in person.

Data security threats are becoming more sophisticated, necessitating efficient database security administrators and robust data security measures and protocols.