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How to configure remote and secure connections for MySQL on Ubuntu 16.04 VPS

mariadb, mysql, percona, ubuntu

If you are using an unencrypted connection to connect to your remote MariaDB/MySQL server, then everyone with access to the network could monitor and analyze the data being sent or received between the client and the server. This guide should work on other Linux VPS systems as well but was tested and written for an Ubuntu 16.04 VPS.