AWS Diagram Security Groups

If you are building on AWS cloud infrastructure then security is almost certainly at the forefront of every move you make when designing, deploying and operating your network environments.

With large, complex environments, the ability to lock down your infrastructure and data is extremely important, so anything that makes the job easier and doesn’t involve trawling through network logs and thousands of console settings can only be a good thing.

Provided unauthorised parties don’t have access to your admin consoles, a very effective way to ensure your network is safe, is to visualize how traffic can enter your network and to visualize what that traffic would be able to access. This is of course best done proactively. If you are checking access logs to see who got in and how, then it’s a bit late. Getting to know your publicly visible attack surface is a good starting point.

With new methodologies like DevOps comes the idea of Infrastructure as Code (IaC), in which infrastructure is automated, managed and provisioned by machine-readable definition files. This API-driven approach is a core premise of automated cloud-first environments because it makes it easy to change the infrastructure on the fly, however it also makes it easy to program in misconfigurations that leave the environment open to vulnerabilities. Gartner states that 95 percentof all security breaches are due to misconfigurations, and those mistakes cost companies nearly$5 trillion in between 2018 and 2019 alone.

Underlying these automation issues is the greatest potential vulnerability of all: Lack of Visibility. In environments as fluid and complex as enterprise cloud deployments, there are hundreds or thousands of instances and accounts. Knowing what is running where and who has access to what is only possible through visualization. Without visualization, vulnerabilities arising from misconfigurations can remain undetected for days, or weeks, or in the worst case scenario, when there has been a breach.

Cloud security posture management addresses these issues by continuously monitoring risk in the cloud through prevention, detection, response, and prediction of where risk may appear next, however giving experienced engineers line of sight through well laid out diagrams can give you a head start over CPMA automation.

As part of the AWS Diagram set automatically created by Hava when you connect your AWS read-only account credentials is the security group view.

AWS Security Groups Diagram

With the standard infrastructure view built by Hava, you get to see your network gateways and the availability zones, VPC’s and subnets that are present and the connections between the gateways and individual resources.

The above security group view comes at the network configuration from another angle. The diagram lays out all the discovered security groups and overlays the ports and traffic ingress / egress details.

Whether you are freshly qualified or a wizened, battle scarred cloud security engineer, the ability to immediately see all your ports and potential vulnerabilities on one diagram is incredibly useful. At a glance, you can see whether the security has been configured in line with your cloud security architect’s intentions and that nothing has been missed or left vulnerable.

On the above ‘demo’ environment you can immediately see port 443 is wide open.

On this AWS security group diagram view, you can see all of your security groups stacked on top of each other. These security group rows are interactive. If you can see an open port and want to know what resources are governed by the security group, all you need to do is click on the group and the attribute information pane to the right of the diagram changes to display that information.

Selecting the “Demo-Internal-Servers” security group on the above diagram for instance, changes the attribute pane metadata. Now we can see specific details about the group like:

  • Region
  • Ingress Ports and IP addresses
  • Egress Ports and IP addresses
  • Connected resources EC2 instances / Network Interfaces / Load Balancers
  • Tags

Most of these resources in the attribute pane are also ‘selectable’, so you can dig deeper into each resource from the security attribute pane should you need to without leaving the security group view diagram.

If you are recommending particular cloud security group frameworks as part of a cloud security solutions offering or are a cloud security services consultant or engineer, you can probably appreciate how much time you could save adding Hava’s security view diagrams to your engineering tool set.

How secure is Hava?

The irony isn’t lost on us. The first question security consultants ask is how does Hava work and can we host it on our own infrastructure to ensure the ultimate secure environment.

What CREDENTIALS Does Hava Require?

AWS keys are stored within our database using AES encryption, but we also promote and prefer using Amazon Cross Account Roles for allowing access. Finally, you are free to tighten the associated IAM policy to whatever it is that you are comfortable with, and Hava will work past any resources that can’t be identified due to policy. This of course will limit the accuracy of the diagrams and security views.

Hava also supports and recommends AWS cross-account role access, Amazon’s best practice methodology for 3rd party connectivity.

Originally published at




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Alan Blackmore

Alan Blackmore

Tech Writer, Developer, Marketer and Generator of Leads.

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