Windows Azure Security

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Windows Azure™ Security Overview
By Charlie Kaufman and Ramanathan Venkatapathy

Abstract
Windows Azure, as an application hosting platform, must provide confidentiality, integrity, and availability of customer data. It must also provide transparent accountability to allow customers and their agents to track administration of services, by themselves and by Microsoft. This document describes the array of controls implemented within Windows Azure, so customers can determine if these capabilities and controls are suitable for their unique requirements. The overview begins with a technical examination of the security functionality available from both the customer’s and Microsoft operations’ perspectives - including identity and access management driven by Windows Live ID and extended through mutual SSL authentication; layered environment and component isolation; virtual machine state maintenance and configuration integrity; and triply redundant storage to minimize the impact of hardware failures. Additional coverage is provided to how monitoring, logging, and reporting within Windows Azure supports accountability within customers’ cloud environments. Extending the technical discussion, this document also covers the people and processes that help make Windows Azure more secure, including integration of Microsoft’s globally recognized SDL principles during Windows Azure development; controls around operations personnel and administrative mechanisms; and physical security features such as customer-selectable geolocation, datacenter facilities access, and redundant power. The document closes with a brief discussion of compliance, which continues to have ongoing impact on IT organizations. While responsibility for compliance with laws, regulations, and industry requirements remains with Windows Azure customers, Microsoft's commitment to providing fundamental security capabilities and an expanding range of tools and options to meet customers' specific challenges is essential to Microsoft's own success, and key to our customers' success with Windows Azure.

August, 2010

Windows Azure Security Overview

Table of Contents

1

INTRODUCTION ......................................................................................................................................... 3 1.1 1.2 1.2.1 1.2.2 AUDIENCE AND SCOPE.......................................................................................................................................................... 3 SECURITY MODEL BASICS ..................................................................................................................................................... 3 Customer View: Compute, Storage, and Service Management ................................................................... 3 Windows Azure View: Fabric ................................................................................................................................... 6

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CLOUD SECURITY DESIGN ........................................................................................................................ 7 2.1 2.1.1 2.1.2 2.1.3 2.1.4 2.2 2.3 2.4 CONFIDENTIALITY .................................................................................................................................................................. 7 Identity and Access Management .......................................................................................................................... 8 Isolation ........................................................................................................................................................................ 10 Encryption .................................................................................................................................................................... 12 Deletion of Data...
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