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Clever utility safety from edge to cloud with Azure Net Software Firewall | Azure Weblog and Updates


Risk intelligence at scale!

Modifications to how we work and function our companies have pushed each firm to now be a digital firm. This acceleration in digital transformation has additionally led to an increase in safety dangers. Cyberattacks have gotten extra widespread and superior with rising assault surfaces as a result of proliferation of cell and IoT units and growing cloud adoption. Primary safety measures are not adequate as new assault vectors have emerged and assaults have grow to be extra subtle with automated and large-scale assaults. To assist our prospects handle these safety challenges, we’ve been evolving Azure Net Software Firewall (Azure WAF), our cloud-native, self-managed safety service to guard your functions and APIs operating in Azure or wherever else—from the community edge to the cloud.

A fast primer on Azure WAF

We provide two choices—world and regional—for deploying Azure WAF on your functions and APIs.

Diagram of global and regional WAF

  • World WAF: Azure WAF attaches to Azure Entrance Door, our native, fashionable cloud content material supply community (CDN), to offer world utility acceleration and clever safety at scale. Azure WAF stops the safety assaults on the community edge nearer to the supply of assault with over tons of of edge areas all over the world.
  • Regional WAF: Azure WAF attaches to Azure Software Gateway, a extremely scalable, net utility regional load balancer operating in a digital community. It manages visitors for each inside and exterior web sites and offers utility safety in over 60 Azure areas worldwide.

What’s modified?

We’re excited to share current updates and announce many new options that can supply prospects higher safety, improved scale, simpler deployment, and higher administration of their functions.

Software and API safety

  • Improved safety posture with new rulesets: On March 29, we introduced the overall availability of Managed Default Rule Set 2.0 (DRS 2.0) built-in with Azure Entrance Door Premium tier. DRS 2.0 contains the most recent Microsoft proprietary guidelines authored by Microsoft Risk Intelligence. At this time, on regional WAF connected to Azure Software Gateway, we’re excited to announce the overall availability of Open Net Software Safety Mission (OWASP) ModSecurity Core Rule Set 3.2 (CRS 3.2). These up to date rulesets present elevated protection for net vulnerabilities, scale back false positives, and shield towards particular vulnerabilities, like Log4J and SpringShell CVEs.
  • Anomaly scoring with lowered false positives: Like regional WAF, we additionally launched anomaly scoring with DRS 2.0 on world WAF which drastically helps scale back false positives for buyer functions. In anomaly scoring mode, when an incoming request violates WAF rule, it’s assigned an anomaly rating based mostly on the severity of the rule, and an motion is taken solely when the anomaly rating reaches a threshold.
  • Elevated dimension limits: With CRS 3.2, regional WAF can now help request physique dimension inspection as much as 2MB and file add dimension as much as 4GB.
  • API safety: With DRS 2.0, world WAF now additionally helps XML and JSON content material sorts that permit request inspection to safe inbound visitors. Azure WAF on Azure Entrance Door and Azure Software Gateway seamlessly integrates with Azure API Administration to offer superior API administration and security measures.
  • Superior customization with per rule exclusions: As in world WAF, right this moment we’re additionally introducing per rule exclusions with CRS 3.2 on regional WAF with Software Gateway.  Exclusions assist you to override WAF engine conduct by specifying sure request attributes to omit from rule analysis. As well as, we now permit attribute exclusions definitions by title or worth of header, cookies, and arguments. Exclusions might be utilized to a rule, algorithm, rule group, or globally for the whole ruleset, offering elevated flexibility to assist scale back false positives and meet application-specific necessities. This characteristic is presently obtainable by way of Azure Useful resource Supervisor, PowerShell, CLI, and SDK. Azure portal integration might be obtainable quickly.

Bot safety

Bots have grow to be a necessary a part of our buyer’s digital footprint, serving to to automate and carry out key capabilities. Nonetheless, attackers are more and more benefiting from this by manipulating bots to hold out malicious duties. We’re constantly enhancing our platform capabilities to higher shield towards bot assaults—bot safety with Bot Supervisor 1.0 ruleset is on the market by way of integration with the Azure Entrance Door Premium tier. Our bot detection and safety guidelines are based mostly on Microsoft Risk Intelligence and help bot classification for good, unhealthy, and unknown bots. Unhealthy bots embody bots from malicious IP addresses or bots which have falsified identities. The malicious IPs are supplied by Microsoft’s Risk Intelligence feed, which relies on feeds from exterior suppliers and inside menace intel. For good bots, WAF makes use of reverse DNS lookups to validate if the user-agent and IP handle vary match what the agent claims it to be. Bot signatures are dynamically managed and routinely up to date by WAF when new menace actors are detected.

Efficiency and scale with the subsequent era of WAF engine

We’re excited to announce the overall availability of our next-generation WAF engine on Azure Software Gateway. The brand new WAF engine, launched with CRS 3.2, is a high-performance, scalable Microsoft proprietary engine and has vital enhancements over the earlier WAF engine.

Advantages of the brand new Azure WAF engine embody:

  • Improved efficiency: In our check lab, the brand new engine resulted in vital discount in WAF latencies when put next with the earlier model of engine. We additionally noticed vital discount in P99 tail latencies with as much as ~8 occasions in processing POST requests and ~4 occasions discount processing GET requests.
  • Elevated scale: Our next-gen engine can scale as much as 8 occasions extra RPS utilizing the identical compute energy and has the flexibility to course of 16 occasions bigger request sizes (now as much as 2MB request dimension), which was not doable earlier with the earlier engine.
  • Higher safety: New redesigned engine with environment friendly regex processing presents higher safety towards RegEx DoS assaults.
  • Richer characteristic set: The brand new engine is on the market with the CRS 3.2 model. New options and future enhancements will solely be obtainable by way of the brand new engine and the later variations of CRS. Prospects are strongly inspired to maneuver to CRS 3.2 model. We’re within the strategy of phasing out CRS 2.2.9 and can cease onboarding new prospects on the older CRS 2.2.9 model. Present prospects on CRS 2.2.9 will proceed to be supported.

To study extra in regards to the new engine, see WAF engine documentation.

Administration and monitoring

  • Native constant expertise with WAF coverage: Software Gateways WAF v2 now natively makes use of regional WAF coverage as an alternative of config by default, eradicating the necessity for the legacy WAF config expertise on Azure Software Gateway. All the most recent options and future enhancements might be obtainable by way of WAF insurance policies. Software Gateway configuration continues to be supported for current deployments of v1 and v2 SKUs, however prospects are strongly inspired emigrate to Software Gateway v2 with WAF insurance policies that provide a richer characteristic set and improved experiences at no extra value. Azure insurance policies might be shared throughout a number of utility gateway deployments, simplifying the administration expertise. With Azure coverage, prospects can simply automate deployment and provisioning of functions utilizing DevOps and APIs pleasant instruments—Azure Useful resource Supervisor, REST API, PowerShell, CLI, and Terraform.
  • Superior analytics capabilities: Now you can entry new Azure Monitor metrics on regional WAF for more practical monitoring, troubleshooting, and debugging. Azure Monitor logs and metrics for WAF might be streamed to a central log platform for superior log analytics and are additional consumed by Microsoft Sentinel and Microsoft Defender for Cloud for safety monitoring and alerting. Microsoft Sentinel integration permits safety analysts to research and correlate information from different sources, detect threats, and automate incidence response. For instance, we lately launched Sentinel searching queries to detect and reply to zero-day vital vulnerabilities like—Log4J Sentinel searching queries and SpringShell Sentinel searching queries.
  • Constructed-in safety reviews: Safety reviews on Azure Entrance Door present highly effective visualization of WAF patterns, developments by motion, and occasions by rule sorts and rule teams. Safety menace analysts can view breakdown prime occasions by totally different dimensions like IP, nation, URL, hostname, and user-agent for menace evaluation.

An example of WAF rules trend by action

  • Improved manageability: Azure WAF integration with Azure Firewall Supervisor is coming quickly. With this integration, prospects will be capable to handle WAF insurance policies at scale for functions hosted on Azure Entrance Door and Azure Software Gateway platforms.

Get began and share your suggestions

You may strive Azure WAF with Azure Software Gateway and Azure Entrance Door right this moment. Go to Azure WAF documentation to study extra. As we proceed to reinforce the Azure WAF providing, we’d love to listen to your suggestions. Submit your concepts and options on the networking neighborhood web page or e mail us at

Keep protected!



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