How Does SSH Access Work on My Shared Hosting Plan?

If you have a website on a shared hosting platform, then you probably want to make sure that your site stays safe and secure. These days, there’s an unfortunate likelihood that your site will come under attack at some point.

One tool that you can use to help encrypt your information is SSH access, otherwise known as Secure Shell protocol. This is an encryption protocol for your network and it lets you create a secure connection across otherwise unsecured networks.

Let’s take a look at what you need to know about SSH access and how it works on your shared hosting plan.

What Exactly is SSH Encryption?

Secure Shell Encryption is the protocol that lets you access an insecure network securely. This protocol uses public key cryptography to ensure the safety of what is being transferred across this network. SSH can be used for a variety of other things including restricting remote access to your server. It prevents hackers from trying to impersonate you during login because you must have a private key to gain access.

How Does Secure Shell Access Work with a Shared Hosting Plan?

When you log into your shared hosting server, you can use the secure shell protocol to upload or move files and execute commands over an unsecured network. (Note: This will only work with those sites that are running Linux operating system.) This will prevent access without your key.

Security on a shared plan is especially important because there are hundreds of websites saved on one server. Often times, there is no wall or security separating these accounts. If one of those sites is hacked or compromised with malware, then it can leave your site open to a hacker as well. Secure shell access can help provide another level of security.

How To Create An SSH Key

In order to create an SSH key, you should first log into your control panel for the website that you want to securely connect with. Then follow these steps:

  1. Select SSH Access under Security
  2. Select Manage SSH Keys
  3. Select Generate a New Key

When you are generating a new key, you will be asked to create a strong password for that key. In general, the safest passwords are a totally random mixture of characters. It should be between 12 and 16 characters and a mixture of lowercase letters, uppercase letters, numbers, and special characters (such as #, !, %, etc.). Never use sequential numbers, letters, or names because a hacker can easily guess these kinds of passwords. The more random your password key is, the safer you will be.

Once you have created the key password, click Generate Key and you will receive a message that it has been created. Once you have done this, you will need to authorize the key in order to use it. Once again, log into your control panel. Then complete the following:

  1. Select SSH Access under Security
  2. Select Manage SSH Keys
  3. Find the key you created. (It should be listed under Public Keys.) Then select the key and you should get a message saying that the key is not authorized.
  4. Click Authorize. You will then receive a message when this has been enabled.

Shared hosting plans are very popular, but they do come with some issues when it comes to potential security flaws and openings. InMotion Hosting offers SSH access so that you can protect yourself when you are accessing your website over an unsecured connection.

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