Infrastructure as a service is a growing trend in cloud computing. One of the reasons enterprises move to the cloud is the decreased infrastructure costs and higher scalability. The sheer accessibility of the data allows flexible work arrangements and will enable companies to hire staff across the globe. However, the downside is you are not in total control of data security. Hence, you should be cautious when choosing a cloud platform for hosting your IT infrastructure.
Microsoft Azure is a top-notch cloud computing service provider that manages your IT infrastructure while managing your software. Here we have discussed why Azure Cloud security is an excellent option for your IT infrastructure.
Secure Network Infrastructure
Businesses using the Azure platform may share networks, but Microsoft has several mechanisms to keep clients’ systems segregated and secure.
For example, management (Microsoft managed) networks and customer’s networks are isolated. The segregation protects customer networks from attacks targeting management networks. The Azure network also has built-in mechanisms that continuously monitor traffic and perform customer traffic profiling to detect and deflect DDoS attacks.
Secure Hardware and Firmware
Azure cloud security controls are integrated into hardware and firmware. This ensures the equipment is secure by default and remains secured throughout its lifetime. Project Cerberus is a technology initiative from Microsoft that protects against malicious updates and unauthorized access.
Cerberus is a micro-controller that secures the pre-boot, boot-time, and runtime integrity of the firmware. Azure hardware has access to the boot environment before operating system loads to detect and stop any malware. Microsoft uses Hyper-V and Intel SGX chip-enabled servers to segregate data and execution from the underlying operating systems.
Secured Testing and Monitoring
Microsoft has around 3500 cybersecurity experts working 24x7x365 to secure your Azure IT infrastructure. This team includes professionals who perform red and blue team exercises to find out vulnerabilities. The Red team tries to compromise Azure infrastructure while the Blue team tries to defend it.
The team codifies its finding in the Azure operational security process to make the team effective in detecting and responding to cyber threats. Azure also offers a service known as the Azure Express route to establish a secure connection for your on-premises environment to Azure. The Azure DDoS Protection standards provide additional protection against layer 3-7 attacks.
Azure’s Built-In Security Controls
Azure Cloud security has several built-in security controls to provide efficient and effective protection to identities, networks, and data.
- The Azure Active directory acts as a central system to manage all cloud services. It supports multi-factor authentication and role-based access to secure cloud resources from unauthorized access.
- The Azure Security Center provides insights into security issues with Azure workloads. The Just-In-Time VM access can protect your virtual machine management ports from brute-force attacks.
Azure’s Unique Intelligence
The Azure platform benefits from Microsoft Intelligence Security Graph that brings signals from different Microsoft products. The collective intelligence gathered from signals helps protect from evolving threats. The combination of Microsoft Intelligence Security Graph with visualizations and machine learning helps understand critical issues and visualize the attack chain.
Best Operational Practices
The operational practices also play an essential role in making the Azure platform more secure.
Secure Deployment Practices
The security development lifecycle (SDL) followed by Microsoft is one of the best practices in software development. It includes seven phases of development and helps build more secure software that also meets compliance requirements. Developers follow the SDL cycle throughout the development process and ensure all security issues are resolved before code is deployed. They also provide the security code developed for the Azure platform in adherence to the security standards of the platform.
Secure Administrator Access and Secure Workstations Access
Azure operations and security professionals also work to protect your data from unauthorized access. For this purpose, it has controls like Just-In-Time Administrative Access, Customer Lockbox for Azure, and Secure Access Workstation. These controls provide a safe environment from Internet-based attacks, phishing attacks, impersonation attacks, or credential theft attacks that put your data and systems at risk.
Fast and Expert Response to Threats
The Azure platform has a global security incident management team that detects and responds to a wide array of security threats. The security incident teams are required to complete technical and security-awareness training. With this training, the security incident team is better positioned to understand technical issues that could create a security issue.
Microsoft has left no stone unturned to offer the right protections to secure all IT resources used by your organization. The Azure security center gives you the visibility of cloud resources and access to advanced security tools to protect your organization from sophisticated cyber-attacks.