Friday 3 August 2018

Importance of EC2 VM Back up for future proofing


There are chances for your EC2 VMs to be hacked, deleted, corrupted or damaged because of some ransomware virus attacking your data. The data in the Elastic Cloud Compute VMs can be corrupted even if it is in the Physical server that is placed somewhere else. Data that are stored in theVM can be hacked randomly out of nowhere. The data can also be deleted accidentally where the database, file system or the whole bunch of files that are stored in the VM can be wiped out with just a single mistake.

Basically, this episode will be like the data on the Windows VM that gets a virus and all the data and files that are stored get encrypted or corrupted accidentally and you have to go back to the pre-encrypted version to start all over again.

It does sound exhausting of the whole process of the data or file getting deleted or corrupted by some virus or Ransomware attack. If someone accidentally or purposely deletes the VM or the data it won’t affect to the VM that is stored anywhere else but it will create an impact to the Amazon EC2 VM. If the VM that has no snapshot or back up gets deleted then that VM is gone forever.

Impact of not backing up your EC2 VMs: was a Cloud-based code hosting service that was put out of business in 2014. They had suffered a DDoS attack that was initiated by an invasion of their Code Spaces Amazon EC2 Control Panel.  Once they came to know about this invasion they started to investigate how they had gained the access and what access they had in the system. They tried to change their EC2 passwords but soon learned that the intruders had created backup logins. Once the hackers noticed that recovery attempts were being made they started to delete the artifacts from the control panel.

Once they received the control panel access; it was too late after realizing that the hackers had removed all the EBS snapshots, EBS instances, AMIs, S3 buckets and several machine instances. So by then all the backups, data, offsite backups and machine configuration were fully or partially deleted. AWS is not responsible for the management of the credentials; the customers do, so at the end, it comes to the customers as to how they make the recovery plan and strategies to save themselves from such situation.

This story reminds us that there should always be a plan B and that plan B can be finding various strategies for disaster planning/recovery plan where one of them can be by backing up the data, snapshots and the database files.

How to back up the EC2 VMs?

There are many ways you can create a backup for your EC2 VMs for a future recovery plan. One can be by putting an agent inside of the VM by creating an EBS Snapshot which is the official way of backing up the EC2 VMs. You can either do it manually, automatically or schedule a period to automatically create a snapshot. You can also use the third party tools to simplify the EBS Snapshot EC2 VMs backup. 

I hope that you learned the importance and the necessity of backing up your EC2 VM. If you have any further questions or suggestion then you can comment down below in the comment section.

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