CloudSimple security overview

Shared responsibility

Azure VMware solution by CloudSimple uses a shared responsibility model for security. Trusted security in the cloud is achieved through the shared responsibilities of customers and Microsoft as a service provider. This matrix of responsibility provides higher security and eliminates single points of failure.

Azure infrastructure

Azure infrastructure security considerations include the datacenters and equipment location.

Datacenter security

Microsoft has an entire division devoted to designing, building, and operating the physical facilities supporting Azure. This team is invested in maintaining state-of-the-art physical security. For details on physical security, see Azure facilities, premises, and physical security.

Equipment location

The bare metal hardware equipment that runs your Private Clouds is hosted in Azure datacenter locations. The cages where that equipment is, requires biometric based two-factor authentication to gain access.

Dedicated hardware

As part of the CloudSimple service, all CloudSimple customers get dedicated bare metal hosts with local attached disks that are physically isolated from other tenant hardware. An ESXi hypervisor with vSAN runs on every node. The nodes are managed through customer dedicated VMware vCenter and NSX. Not sharing hardware between tenants provides an additional layer of isolation and security protection.

Data security

Customers keep control and ownership of their data. Data stewardship of customer data is the responsibility of the customer.

Data protection for data at rest and data in motion within internal networks

For data at rest in the Private Cloud environment, you can use vSAN encryption. vSAN encryption works with VMware certified external key management servers (KMS) in your own virtual network or on-premises. You control the data encryption keys yourself. For data in motion within the Private Cloud, vSphere supports encryption of data over the wire for all vmkernel traffic (including vMotion traffic).

Data Protection for data that is required to move through public networks

To protect data that moves through public networks, you can create IPsec and SSL VPN tunnels for your Private Clouds. Common encryption methods are supported, including 128-byte and 256-byte AES. Data in transit (including authentication, administrative access, and customer data) is encrypted with standard encryption mechanisms (SSH, TLS 1.2, and Secure RDP). Communication that transports sensitive information uses the standard encryption mechanisms.

Secure Disposal

If your CloudSimple service expires or is terminated, you are responsible for removing or deleting your data. CloudSimple will cooperate with you to delete or return all customer data as provided in the customer agreement, except to the extent CloudSimple is required by applicable law to retain some or all of the personal data. If necessary to retain any personal data, CloudSimple will archive the data and implement reasonable measures to prevent the customer data from any further processing.

Data Location

When setting up your Private Clouds, you choose the Azure region where they will be deployed. VMware virtual machine data is not moved from that physical datacenter unless you perform data migration or offsite data backup. You can also host workloads and store data within multiple Azure regions if appropriate for your needs.

The customer data that is resident in Private Cloud hyper-converged nodes doesn't traverse locations without the explicit action of the tenant administrator. It is your responsibility to implement your workloads in a highly available manner.

Data Backups

CloudSimple doesn't back up or archive customer data. CloudSimple does perform periodic backup of vCenter and NSX data to provide high availability of management servers. Prior to backup, all the data is encrypted at the vCenter source using VMware APIs. The encrypted data is transported and stored in Azure blob. Encryption keys for backups are stored in a highly secure CloudSimple managed vault running in the CloudSimple virtual network in Azure.

Network Security

The CloudSimple solution relies on layers of network security.

Azure edge security

The CloudSimple services are built on top of the base network security provided by Azure. Azure applies defense-in-depth techniques for detection and timely response to network-based attacks associated with anomalous ingress or egress traffic patterns and distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks. This security control applies to Private Cloud environments and the control plane software developed by CloudSimple.


The CloudSimple service has logically separate Layer 2 networks that restrict access to your own private networks in your Private Cloud environment. You can further protect your Private Cloud networks using a firewall. The CloudSimple portal allows you to define EW and NS network traffic controls rules for all network traffic, including intra Private Cloud traffic, inter-Private Cloud traffic, general traffic to the Internet, and network traffic to on-premises over IPsec VPN or ExpressRoute connection.

Vulnerability and Patch Management

CloudSimple is responsible for periodic security patching of managed VMware software (ESXi, vCenter, and NSX).

Identity and Access Management

Customers can authenticate to their Azure account (in Azure AD) using multi-factor authentication or SSO as preferred. From the Azure portal, you can launch the CloudSimple portal without reentering credentials.

CloudSimple supports optional configuration of an identity source for the Private Cloud vCenter. You can use an on-premises identity source, a new identity source for the Private Cloud, or Azure AD.

By default, customers are given the privileges that are necessary for day-to-day operations of vCenter within the Private Cloud. This permission level doesn't include administrative access to vCenter. If administrative access is temporarily required, you can escalate your privileges for a limited period while you complete the administrative tasks.

Documentation Feedback

You can provide feedback on documentation here (requires Github account). You can also email us your feedback.