How To Secure Azure Resources With Azure Governance Tools

microsoft azure

This post was last Updated on by Himanshu Tyagi to reflect the accuracy and up-to-date information on the page.

Azure is a widely spread environment where users can only perform permitted operations. Sometimes, due to a lack of knowledge or curiosity, users do things that directly or indirectly affect the business.

So, ensuring compliance and tracking the changes made is always better. Following the changes or actions can help an organization revert to the previous safe state if needed and help investigate who has made the changes.

  • Azure has its Governance option, which is more advanced than any primary cloud provider. The native Azure Governance services are as follows:
  • Azure Blueprint
  • Azure Policy
  • Azure Cost management
  • Azure Resource Graph

How Governance services in Azure help users

The Governance mentioned above Services in Azure:

  • Enforce internal standards and guardrails
  • Apply consistent security & management
  • Setup environments faster
  • Meet regulatory compliance requirements
  • Release compliant code faster
  • Control costs
  • Organize resources to match your organization

Azure Blueprints

Azure Blueprint enables a user to deploy resources in a series. The resources deployed will follow specific standards and requirements. Also, it provides an overall architectural view even before the resources are deployed.

This can help users to predict the cost and risk upfront. Azure Blueprints are highly reusable and hence can ensure consistency and can maintain compliance among resources.

Azure Blueprints enable cloud governance at scale with templates for creating and managing enterprise environments.

Azure Blueprint lifecycle

The life cycle of Azure Blueprint starts with creating a Blueprint and ends with Deletion. In between these two stages, the blueprint can be modified or altered.

The typical Azure Blueprint lifecycle consists of the following:

  1. Creation of a blueprint
  2. Publishing the blueprint
  3. Creating or editing the latest version of the blueprint
  4. Publishing an updated version of the blueprint
  5. Deletion of a specific version of the blueprint
  6. Deleting the blueprint altogether

Enabling quick, repeatable creation of governed environments

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Cost Management in Azure

As the cloud is emerging with more potential as days grow, organizations adapt more towards the cloud, moving away from the native on-prem solution. Initially, it will be easy for users to track their resources and spending in the cloud.

But as their Azure footprint increases, an organization is entirely into the cloud, the resources increase drastically, and so do the cost. Any organization will have colossal trouble without keeping track of the cost and their expansion in the cloud. Azure cost management helps the user to take control of their Azure spending and to optimize it.

Get transparency into what you are spending on cloud resources.

With Cost management, users can picture the cost of Resources, Subscription, or even region-wise. This helps users keep track of their spending in the cloud to determine which services they consume the most.

azure cost management

Triggering alerts whenever the spending grows beyond the configured threshold value (Cost) is also possible. With this alert, users can realize when their spending exceeds the limit and take appropriate actions.

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Compliance with Azure Policies

Azure Policy helps users to create/update resources with organizational standards and to assess compliance at scale.

Set policies across resources and monitor compliance

Azure Policies integration is a beautiful way to ensure the Standard and reliability of any resources created, ensuring security. Azure Policies can make sure all the deployments meet the Standards.

One such effective ways are Integration with Azure DevOps. When integrated with Azure DevOps, Azure policies can ensure the developed code is not deployed until it complies with defined policies. This can increase innovation as the user has to change the code until it is compliant.

The compliance dashboard gives the user an aggregated view of the environment’s overall status. With this dashboard, the user can also ensure that the existing resources are factual. This provides security on your Azure Application.

  • During the resource lifecycle, resources are evaluated at specific times.
  • When a resource is created, updated, or deleted in a scope with a policy assignment
  • When a policy or initiative is newly assigned to a scope
  • When a policy or initiative already assigned to a scope is updated
  • Every 24 hours, during the standard compliance evaluation cycle

Azure Resource Graph

Define Azure policies directly from the Azure resource graph Query – KQL (Kusto Query Language). Absolute Governance can be achieved in your environment with Azure Resource Graph, as it provides efficient and performant resource exploration and the ability to query across a set of subscriptions.

It can also query changes made to a resource property. Exporting Query results from Azure resource graphs to various platforms makes it handy to view insights from a single place.

Besides the native governance services, Severless360, a third-party tool, helps achieve better Azure governance in the Azure environment. Now let us explore this in detail.

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Serverless360 is a SAAS (software as a service) offering to manage and monitor your Azure serverless application. Despite its operational solid and monitoring capabilities, Serverless360 also provides Governance of your Azure resources at the Application level.

A one-platform tool to manage and monitor your Azure serverless resources

Serverless360 pulls resources from various Tenants, Regions, Subscriptions, and Resource groups to logically group them, providing an application-level view of your Azure Serverless Application. And it also provides a dashboard in the name of Resource Map that gives the cost spent on each application built-in multiple environments.


Serverless360 can also picture the cost spent in each application environment, like staging, production, and Dev. This helps users get a rough overview of their spending on each application and its environment.

serverless360 pricing

Governance and Audit Logs in Serverless360

Serverless360 has its governance and audit feature, which logs all the activities performed by any user in the Serverless360 portal.

Serverless360 can do some operational activities via the Serverless360 portal itself. This will be particularly useful for an organization investigating who has done what?

audit logs in serverless360

Users can also export these logs in an Excel or PDF format for future reference.

While performing the operational tasks via the Serverless360 portal has its advantages. In the Azure portal, all the audit logs are stored in JSON format, which is difficult for any user to understand what has happened. But in Serverless360, actions are audited in an exact GUI representation.

Serverless360’s User management User can also create a custom role to access application-level and resource-type levels. This can proactively help the organization restrict users from doing specific volatile tasks.


With both Azure native governance solutions and Serverless360, the user can achieve industry standards and improve innovation.

Setting up all these different solutions together is difficult, but the user can aim small, set up one solution, understand it better, and then move to the next governance solution.

In this method, the user will have adequate knowledge of the capabilities and limitations of each solution.

Running the Governance scan in a timely interval or regularly can help the user identify a lack of standards immediately. Educate the organization on the configured standards and policies should be educated to ensure the consistency of standards.

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