Azure security baseline for Container Instances

This security baseline applies guidance from the Microsoft cloud security benchmark version 1.0 to Container Instances. The Microsoft cloud security benchmark provides recommendations on how you can secure your cloud solutions on Azure. The content is grouped by the security controls defined by the Microsoft cloud security benchmark and the related guidance applicable to Container Instances.

You can monitor this security baseline and its recommendations using Microsoft Defender for Cloud. Azure Policy definitions will be listed in the Regulatory Compliance section of the Microsoft Defender for Cloud dashboard.

When a feature has relevant Azure Policy Definitions, they are listed in this baseline to help you measure compliance to the Microsoft cloud security benchmark controls and recommendations. Some recommendations may require a paid Microsoft Defender plan to enable certain security scenarios.

Note

Features not applicable to Container Instances have been excluded. To see how Container Instances completely maps to the Microsoft cloud security benchmark, see the full Container Instances security baseline mapping file.

Security profile

The security profile summarizes high-impact behaviors of Container Instances, which may result in increased security considerations.

Service Behavior Attribute Value
Product Category Compute, Containers
Customer can access HOST / OS No Access
Service can be deployed into customer's virtual network True
Stores customer content at rest False

Network security

For more information, see the Microsoft cloud security benchmark: Network security.

NS-1: Establish network segmentation boundaries

Features

Virtual Network Integration

Description: Service supports deployment into customer's private Virtual Network (VNet). Learn more.

Supported Enabled By Default Configuration Responsibility
True False Customer

Configuration Guidance: Deploy the service into a virtual network. Assign private IPs to the resource (where applicable) unless there is a strong reason to assign public IPs directly to the resource.

Reference: Deploy container instances into Virtual Network

Network Security Group Support

Description: Service network traffic respects Network Security Groups rule assignment on its subnets. Learn more.

Supported Enabled By Default Configuration Responsibility
True False Customer

Configuration Guidance: Use NSG rules to control container access to subnets or other network resources

Note: Placing an Azure Load Balancer in front of container instances in a networked container group is not supported.

NS-2: Secure cloud services with network controls

Features

Description: Service native IP filtering capability for filtering network traffic (not to be confused with NSG or Azure Firewall). Learn more.

Supported Enabled By Default Configuration Responsibility
False Not Applicable Not Applicable

Configuration Guidance: This feature is not supported to secure this service.

Disable Public Network Access

Description: Service supports disabling public network access either through using service-level IP ACL filtering rule (not NSG or Azure Firewall) or using a 'Disable Public Network Access' toggle switch. Learn more.

Supported Enabled By Default Configuration Responsibility
False Not Applicable Not Applicable

Configuration Guidance: This feature is not supported to secure this service.

Identity management

For more information, see the Microsoft cloud security benchmark: Identity management.

IM-1: Use centralized identity and authentication system

Features

Azure AD Authentication Required for Data Plane Access

Description: Service supports using Azure AD authentication for data plane access. Learn more.

Supported Enabled By Default Configuration Responsibility
False Not Applicable Not Applicable

Feature notes: Customer can create use or system assigned Managed identity to securely access resources in ARM

Configuration Guidance: This feature is not supported to secure this service.

Local Authentication Methods for Data Plane Access

Description: Local authentications methods supported for data plane access, such as a local username and password. Learn more.

Supported Enabled By Default Configuration Responsibility
False Not Applicable Not Applicable

Configuration Guidance: This feature is not supported to secure this service.

IM-3: Manage application identities securely and automatically

Features

Managed Identities

Description: Data plane actions support authentication using managed identities. Learn more.

Supported Enabled By Default Configuration Responsibility
True False Customer

Configuration Guidance: Use managed identities for Azure resources to run code in Azure Container Instances that interacts with other Azure services - without maintaining any secrets or credentials in code. The feature provides an Azure Container Instances deployment with an automatically managed identity in Azure Active Directory.

Reference: How to Use Managed Identitites with Azure Container Instances

Service Principals

Description: Data plane supports authentication using service principals. Learn more.

Supported Enabled By Default Configuration Responsibility
False Not Applicable Not Applicable

Configuration Guidance: This feature is not supported to secure this service.

IM-7: Restrict resource access based on conditions

Features

Conditional Access for Data Plane

Description: Data plane access can be controlled using Azure AD Conditional Access Policies. Learn more.

Supported Enabled By Default Configuration Responsibility
True False Customer

Configuration Guidance: There is no current Microsoft guidance for this feature configuration. Please review and determine if your organization wants to configure this security feature.

IM-8: Restrict the exposure of credential and secrets

Features

Service Credential and Secrets Support Integration and Storage in Azure Key Vault

Description: Data plane supports native use of Azure Key Vault for credential and secrets store. Learn more.

Supported Enabled By Default Configuration Responsibility
False Not Applicable Not Applicable

Configuration Guidance: This feature is not supported to secure this service.

Privileged access

For more information, see the Microsoft cloud security benchmark: Privileged access.

PA-7: Follow just enough administration (least privilege) principle

Features

Azure RBAC for Data Plane

Description: Azure Role-Based Access Control (Azure RBAC) can be used to managed access to service's data plane actions. Learn more.

Supported Enabled By Default Configuration Responsibility
True False Customer

Configuration Guidance: If using a cloud-based private registry like Azure Container Registry with Azure Container Instances, use Azure role-based access control (Azure RBAC) manage access to data and resources in an Azure container registry.

Reference: Security recommendations for Azure Container Instances

PA-8: Determine access process for cloud provider support

Features

Customer Lockbox

Description: Customer Lockbox can be used for Microsoft support access. Learn more.

Supported Enabled By Default Configuration Responsibility
False Not Applicable Not Applicable

Configuration Guidance: This feature is not supported to secure this service.

Data protection

For more information, see the Microsoft cloud security benchmark: Data protection.

DP-4: Enable data at rest encryption by default

Features

Data at Rest Encryption Using Platform Keys

Description: Data at-rest encryption using platform keys is supported, any customer content at rest is encrypted with these Microsoft managed keys. Learn more.

Supported Enabled By Default Configuration Responsibility
True False Microsoft

Configuration Guidance: Enable data at rest encryption using platform managed (Microsoft managed) keys where not automatically configured by the service.

Reference: Azure Container Instances - encrypt deployment data

DP-5: Use customer-managed key option in data at rest encryption when required

Features

Data at Rest Encryption Using CMK

Description: Data at-rest encryption using customer-managed keys is supported for customer content stored by the service. Learn more.

Supported Enabled By Default Configuration Responsibility
True False Customer

Configuration Guidance: If required for regulatory compliance, define the use case and service scope where encryption using customer-managed keys are needed. Enable and implement data at rest encryption using customer-managed key for those services.

Reference: Azure Container Instances - encrypt deployment data

DP-6: Use a secure key management process

Features

Key Management in Azure Key Vault

Description: The service supports Azure Key Vault integration for any customer keys, secrets, or certificates. Learn more.

Supported Enabled By Default Configuration Responsibility
True False Customer

Configuration Guidance: Use Azure Key Vault to create and control the lifecycle of your encryption keys used for the customer-managed key-based encryption for your container instance.

Reference: Create a Key Vault resource

DP-7: Use a secure certificate management process

Features

Certificate Management in Azure Key Vault

Description: The service supports Azure Key Vault integration for any customer certificates. Learn more.

Supported Enabled By Default Configuration Responsibility
False Not Applicable Not Applicable

Configuration Guidance: This feature is not supported to secure this service.

Asset management

For more information, see the Microsoft cloud security benchmark: Asset management.

AM-2: Use only approved services

Features

Azure Policy Support

Description: Service configurations can be monitored and enforced via Azure Policy. Learn more.

Supported Enabled By Default Configuration Responsibility
True False Customer

Feature notes: Azure Container Instances supports configuring policy for 2 features (CMK and deployments in private virtual network)

Configuration Guidance: Use Microsoft Defender for Cloud to configure Azure Policy to audit and enforce configurations of your Azure resources. Use Azure Monitor to create alerts when there is a configuration deviation detected on the resources. Use Azure Policy [deny] and [deploy if not exists] effects to enforce secure configuration across Azure resources.

Reference: Azure Policy built-in definitions for Azure Container Instances

Logging and threat detection

For more information, see the Microsoft cloud security benchmark: Logging and threat detection.

LT-4: Enable logging for security investigation

Features

Azure Resource Logs

Description: Service produces resource logs that can provide enhanced service-specific metrics and logging. The customer can configure these resource logs and send them to their own data sink like a storage account or log analytics workspace. Learn more.

Supported Enabled By Default Configuration Responsibility
True False Customer

Configuration Guidance: Log Analytics workspaces provide a centralized location for storing and querying log data not only from Azure resources, but also on-premises resources and resources in other clouds. Azure Container Instances includes built-in support for sending logs and event data to Azure Monitor logs.

Reference: Container group and instance logging with Azure Monitor logs

Backup and recovery

For more information, see the Microsoft cloud security benchmark: Backup and recovery.

BR-1: Ensure regular automated backups

Features

Azure Backup

Description: The service can be backed up by the Azure Backup service. Learn more.

Supported Enabled By Default Configuration Responsibility
False Not Applicable Not Applicable

Feature notes: ACI is recommended for stateless applications and we do not offer backup service. Customer can opt for regions which support AZ support to back their deployments in same region. For cross-region, they need to design backup and disaster recovery solution by deploying their apps in ACI in multiple regions and route traffic using traffic manager to handle disaster recovery use cases.

Configuration Guidance: This feature is not supported to secure this service.

Service Native Backup Capability

Description: Service supports its own native backup capability (if not using Azure Backup). Learn more.

Supported Enabled By Default Configuration Responsibility
False Not Applicable Not Applicable

Configuration Guidance: This feature is not supported to secure this service.

Next steps