Who should read this guide?
The Halo Operations Guide explains nearly everything you need to know if you access, configure, use, and administer the CloudPassage Halo service—everything that allows you to provide strong, dynamic protection to all of your cloud and physical servers, all across the globe. From your first login to the portal, through your server-architecture implementations, agent installations, and security scans, this guide steps you through the procedures and best practices that can guard your assets and intellectual property against malicious actions.
Consult portions of this manual if you are—
- A DevOps architect responsible for designing Halo protection for your organization. Also be sure to read How Halo Works for a broad overview of Halo's capabilities and depth of protection.
- A security specialist responsible for monitoring and addressing security issues and events. Also be sure to read Interpreting Halo Security Issues and Events for detailed recommendations.
- A Security Ops admin responsible for implementing strong policies to secure your server infrastructure. Also be sure to read the policy-implementation portions of each of the individual Halo module Setup Guides.
- A sysadmin responsible for conducting ongoing Halo operations across your networks. Also be sure to read the procedural portions of each of the Halo module Setup Guides.
- A developer looking to add Halo capabiities to your existing or new orchestration and security tools. This and other Halo guides describe the capabilities that you can implement through the Halo REST API.
Note: This guide is the core of a suite of documents that describe in detail the core Halo platform and each of the specific security modules and services that Halo offers. The entire documentation suite is available on our Customer Support forums site.
About Halo and the Halo Portal
(For a more comprehensive overview of the capabilities of Halo, see How Halo Works: a Technical Summary.)
CloudPassage Halo is a software-as-a-service offering that provides strong security for your cloud servers, across all public, private, and hybrid could environments. In use, the components of Halo are distributed across the customer's clouds and other clouds, as shown below.
- The Halo agent is a lightweight and secure software component that runs as a service on each cloud server. The agent monitors important server security factors, communicates with the Halo security analytics engine as needed, and takes actions based on pre-configured or customized security policies.
- The Halo security analytics engine is a powerful elastic compute grid that provides sophisticated analytics that evaluate data collected by the Halo agents. The analytics engine does the "heavy lifting" on behalf of the agents, preserving customer server resources and performance.
- The Halo portal is the convenient "single pane of glass" used to manage all Halo product capabilities, create policies, set up alerting, view reports, manage users, and other tasks.
- The Halo REST API gives you an alternative to the Halo portal for managing Halo operations. Your developers can create new tools or add Halo capability to existing tools.
Through the Halo portal, you apply Halo's group-based policy management to efficiently add and manage security to server fleets of all sizes. You can apply security policies at initial server launch, or at any time for operational servers. Halo automatically monitors all servers and reports any security violations in real time. You can view recent and historical violations in the portal, and you can use the portal to create, assign, and retire policies as needed.
All Halo users automatically have access to the portal to create and manage server groups, control their Halo accounts, apply any available Halo security features, conduct scans to detect security issues, respond to events and alerts, and automate tasks through the Halo REST API. Depending on your account type, you may also be able to install Halo agents, add and manage new Halo users, and activate additional Halo security features.
Note: This document describes all portal features, equivalent to what a Halo site administrator user can access.
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