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If I was to forward a port (for Minecraft server) would it pose any security issues at all?

I have X amount of devices connected to my one network, and I'd not like them to be "hacked".

I know I can use Amazon or a VPS for running the server, which would be ulta-safe, but it's too expensive.

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migrated from serverfault.com Dec 30 '11 at 5:12

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2 Answers 2

up vote 4 down vote accepted

Only in the sense that if someone could exploit your Minecraft server, they've now got control over a server inside your network, 'behind' your firewall.

Other than that, there's little risk.

edit I should have said 'behind the firewall', rather than 'behind the nat'.

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What else can happen if they get 'behind' the NAT? –  alexy13 Dec 29 '11 at 21:01
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Well, the whole point of putting a firewall between your servers and the big evil world is to limit the exposure of any vulnerabilities that may exist in the services those servers are running. If an attacker controls a box that's behind the firewall, they've effectively removed that security control. –  growse Dec 29 '11 at 21:07
    
@growse Well said :) –  Shane Madden Dec 29 '11 at 21:19

Yes. While ports other than that one forwarded port are not exposed (assuming that it's configured correctly), a single port offers a window into your network that can be used to attack it, if the service that's on that port is compromised.

In this case, you're relying on the security of the Minecraft server. If someone (theoretically) had a way to compromise that process and gain control of it, they could then use that access to attack other devices inside your network and potentially compromise them as well.

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If the Minecraft server was running in a virtual machine, would they be able to gain access to other devices running on the same network? –  alexy13 Dec 29 '11 at 21:04
    
@alexy13 In the same way as they would if they were plugged into the network, yes - so for instance, if you have anonymous file sharing turned on, they could get to that; if you have it requiring passwords, then that would provide an extra layer of protection. –  Shane Madden Dec 29 '11 at 21:05

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