Data stored in the OandMs system is stored securely in Microsoft Azure cloud hosting services.
Many people are concerned about the security of data hosted in the cloud but in many ways it is actually more secure than data stored on your own server. With multiple levels of encryption and multiple redundant backups you don’t need to worry about the security of your data. But rather than us telling you, let some industry-leaders put your mind at rest...
“Our independent performance testing has shown that Windows Azure is ahead of its competitors, thereby strengthening its position.”
InformationWeek Network Computing
“Microsoft federal chief technology officer Susie Adams announced that Azure was granted Provisional Authority to Operate (P-ATO) status from the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program’s (FedRAMP) Joint Authorization Board. FedRAMP certification means the Department of Defense, the Department of Homeland Security and the U.S. General Services Administration deem the platform secure.”
“But the question always comes up, is it “safe” to put SQL data and SharePoint content up in the cloud? The answer is absolutely YES.”
Design and operational security
Microsoft has developed industry-leading best practices in the design and management of online services. Theses include:
- Security Centers of Excellence - The Microsoft Digital Crimes Unit, Microsoft Cybercrime Center, and Microsoft Malware Protection Center provide insight into evolving global security threats.
- Security Development Lifecycle (SDL) - Since 2004, all Microsoft products and services have been designed and built from the ground up using its Security Development Lifecycle - a comprehensive approach for writing more secure, reliable and privacy-enhanced code.
- Operational Security Assurance (OSA) - The Microsoft OSA program provides an operational security baseline across all major cloud services, helping ensure key risks are consistently mitigated.
- Assume breach - Specialised teams of Microsoft security engineers use pioneering security practices and operate with an ‘assume breach’ mindset to identify potential vulnerabilities and proactively eliminate threats before they become risks to customers.
- Incident response - Microsoft operates a global 24x7 event and incident response team to help mitigate threats from attacks and malicious activity.
Security controls and capabilities
Azure delivers a trusted foundation on which customers can design, build and manage their own secure cloud applications and infrastructure:
- Encrypted communications - Built-in SSL and TLS cryptography enables customers to encrypt communications within and between deployments, from Azure to on-premise datacenters and from Azure to administrators and users.
- Data encryption - Azure offers a wide range of encryption capabilities up to AES‑256, giving customers the flexibility to implement the methods that best meets their needs.
- 24 hour monitored physical security - Datacenters are physically constructed, managed, and monitored to shelter data and services from unauthorised access as well as environmental threats.
- Monitoring and logging - Security is monitored with the aid of centralised monitoring, correlation, and analysis systems that manage the large amount of information generated by devices within the environment and providing timely alerts. In addition, multiple levels of monitoring, logging, and reporting are available to provide visibility to customers.
- Patching - Integrated deployment systems manage the distribution and installation of security patches. Customers can apply similar patch management processes for Virtual Machines deployed in Azure.
- Antivirus/antimalware protection - Microsoft Antimalware is built-in to Cloud Services and can be enabled for Virtual Machines to help identify and remove viruses, spyware and other malicious software and provide real time protection. Customers can also run antimalware solutions from partners on their Virtual Machines.
- Intrusion detection and DDoS - Intrusion detection and prevention systems, denial of service attack prevention, regular penetration testing, and forensic tools help identify and mitigate threats from both outside and inside of Azure.
- Zero standing privileges - Access to customer data by Microsoft operations and support personnel is denied by default. When granted, access is carefully managed and logged. Data center access to the systems that store customer data is strictly controlled via lock box processes.
- Isolation - Azure uses network isolation to prevent unwanted communications between deployments, and access controls block unauthorised users. Virtual Machines do not receive inbound traffic from the Internet unless customers configure them to do so.
- Azure Virtual Networks - Customers can choose to assign multiple deployments to an isolated Virtual Network and allow those deployments to communicate with each other through private IP addresses.
- Private connection - Customers can use ExpressRoute to establish a private connection to Azure datacenters, keeping their traffic off the Internet.
- Identity and access - Azure Active Directory enables customers to manage access to Azure, Office 365 and a world of other cloud apps. Multi-Factor Authentication and access monitoring offer enhanced security.