FREMONT, CA: Microsoft announces the release of a free beta version of its Azure Storage Service Encryption which includes a New 256-bit Advanced Encryption Standard (AES-256) encryption for data at rest, more efficient storage Application Programming Interface (API) and an updated Storage Explorer application, reports Pedro Hernandez for eWeek.
The Azure Storage Service Encryption enables clients to safeguard Azure Blob data at rest. Blob is a unit of cloud storage that contains text and binary data. The Azure Storage Service Encryption automatically encrypts the Azure Blob storage data prior to persisting to storage and decrypts prior to retrieval. The encryption and decryption of data is performed by the AES-256.
The Azure Storage Service Encryption can be used with all Azure Storage versions and for both Standard and Premium plan users. The Azure Storage Service Encryption also features an updated GetPageRanges application programming interface (API) that generates a list of changes between a base blob and its snapshots. This capability will allow users to more easily find changes unique to a particular snapshot and copy only those changes, reducing the amount of data transferred during incremental snapshots.
Microsoft plans to extend its Azure Backup Service support to premium storage plans, helping businesses running critical applications on Premium storage virtual machines to protect their workloads.
Microsoft also added a “sneakernet” Azure Import/Export tool to the cloud, which enables transferring of data to the cloud by physically shipping hard drives. The updated Azure Storage Explorer tool has an updated UI, more performance tweaks, and support for Azure Table and Queue storage. Azure Storage Explorer is a stand-alone app that allows users to work directly with data stored in Azure Storage.
"Storage Service Encryption automatically encrypts your Azure Blob storage data prior to persisting to storage and decrypts prior to retrieval,” says Lavanya Kasarabada, a Microsoft Azure Storage program manager. "The encryption, decryption and key management is transparent to users, requires no changes to your applications, and frees your engineering team from having to implement complex key management processes," she added.