Syed Saif AWS Azure Cloud Expert

  Syed Saif   Syed Saif Linkedin Profile | 3 August 2021 | Security for your Azure Cloud Application Environment.

Protecting your cloud environment covering servers and all other resources from threats and vulnerabilities is very critical. Else you end up with security issues leading to severe business impact and losses.

Microsoft Azure offers a large portfolio of security services to secure all your resources on Azure.

I explain five core security services that are easy to deploy and provide exceptional protection to your Azure Cloud Application Environment.

Top 5 Microsoft Security Services are :
    • Azure Bastion
    • Azure Firewall
    • Azure Defender
    • Azure DDoS Protection
    • Azure Security Center

1.Azure Bastion
One of the best practices to protect your cloud servers is to disable direct login (SSH/RDP) from the internet. Bastion host is a secured server that you login first and then access your production servers.

It can be time consuming and complex to set up and manage your own bastion host. Azure Bastion security service makes the job a lot easier. No hassles to manage the bastion host since it is a completely managed security service from Microsoft Azure.

Provisioning Azure Bastion is a simple and quick process. Ater provisioning you access your linux servers (SSH protocol) or Windows Servers(RDP protocol) using the Azure Bastion host. Azure bastion host protects all your servers in a given Azure virtual network since you disable direct access to servers from the internet.

Currently Azure Bastion is available only in selected regions. So check out if it is available in your region before planning to deploy it.

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2.Azure Firewall
Azure firewall protects your virtual networks on Azure cloud. You configure security rules to allow or restrict traffic entering or leaving the virtual network. If you have more than one virtual network on Azure then you can also use the firewall to control traffic within those virtual networks.

If you have many virtual networks with different access requirements then you can configure one firewall per network. You can manage all your firewalls from a single point using Azure firewall manager.

Launching the firewall is a simple process. You provide details like the resource group, virtual network to be protected , select public IP for the firewall,etc.

3.Azure Defender
Azure Defender protects your Windows and Linux VMs from threats and vulnerabilities. We use an antivirus tool for laptops or desktops to protect from malware and other vulnerabilities. Likewise Microsoft Azure Defender is an advanced and powerful security tool to protect your cloud server workloads.

An agent is installed on each of the servers to be protected. You can automate the installation during server provisioning or do it manually. Azure defender also does vulnerability scanning, file integrity checks and much more.

Azure Defender is Integrated with Azure Security center. This makes it easier to monitor , manage and protect servers and other resources from a single console.

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4.Azure DDoS Protection
Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks on servers or the network makes application non responsive and impacts it’s availability. There are different approaches to mitigating DDOS attacks like using a firewall to block traffic from specific sources . A firewall only security approach is not enough to mitigate DDoS attacks. An automated and large capacity to protect and mitigate DDoS attacks is required. Azure DDoS security service does exactly that .

By default your Azure network has Basic DDoS protection and is free. But Basic DDoS does not guarantee protection or availability of your network/application. Subscription to advanced and priced versions of DDoS (Standard DDoS) is required. Standard DDoS Security Service provides guaranteed protection and availability. You also have access to metrics , reports and DDoS response support .

5.Azure Security Center
Microsoft Azure Security Center allows you to assess the security profile of all your cloud resources, including servers, storage, SQL, networks, applications, and workloads that are running in Microsoft Azure Cloud, on-premises and in other clouds.

Security Center is a single place to know:

    • How protected are your cloud resources ?
    • Recommendations to address vulnerabilities
    • Measure compliances to industry standards policy like ISO 27001
    • Understand and handle security alerts
    • Security score that gives an idea of the security posture of your complete subscription.
Azure Firewall and Azure Defender are integrated with the security center. This ensures that you can manage your complete security posture in a single place.

Need guidance or support to decide on choosing the right option?  Click here to know how you can get help.

And if  you wish to check out all the Microsoft Azure Services here’s the Azure services page. For more details on specific product like Azure Security Center Checkout the Microsoft Azure Security Center

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