How to Connect Azure-based Virtual Machines Securely

Microsoft Azure is an innovative technology that helps organizations adopt services and cloud-based infrastructures. For a long time, azure remote access solutions have helped many small and medium-sized companies drive their growth and establish their fortunes. 

A well-known and commonly used Microsoft remote desktop azure protocol is RDP or Remote Desktop Protocol, used to access distant computers and servers from the comforts of the users’ desks. But in recent times, with so many azure remote access solutions, it has become quite challenging for IT professionals to show their virtual machines to the public because of the threats of hackers.

So here are some of the ways you can mitigate these threats and securely connect your VMs with RDP:

  1. Using a Private IP Address Across a Site to Site VPN

This is the ideal form of RDP connection. Protecting against vulnerabilities such as brute force, port scanning, and DDoS attacks keeps your communication with the Virtual Machine safe from the public Internet. From the Azure network to the on-premises network Azure, via a VPN getaway, VMs can be connected with the RDP using a private IP address, securely from the public eye.

The public IP address, if not needed, can be removed, but If somehow it is necessary for something, the RDP port will just be closed automatically. This reduces the risks of attacks by seamlessly connecting to Azure VM without public IP addresses. Most of the web development Companies prefer to use this to safeguard sites from DDoS Attacks.

  • By Locking Down RDP to an IP Range or Source IP

The default RDP port – 3389 – allows any IP In the world to connect to RDP, thus enabling it to become a security risk. It can be avoided if RDP access is only restricted to a particular source IP address or range with Azure Network Security Groups.

Allowing RDP connection from a specific IP address or denying all other RDP traffic -these two inbound rules can raise some pros and cons. The pros are that it effectively decreases outside risks by only allowing the particular on-premises machines to RDP into the Microsoft remote desktop azur’s virtual machines. But its only con is that the port stays visible on the public Internet. This is only suitable for small businesses and organizations.

  • Right time VM access

As it takes several days to weeks to complete brute force attacks and an even more significant number of attempts to connect through the RDP ports, the situation becomes less vulnerable if the ports are open when you need them. Just-in-time (JIT) VM access exactly do this work and closes down the ports to your IP address after your need is done on the VM. It also has its pros and cons, which are as follows:

Pros: Decrease the risk of successful brute force attacks effectively.

Cons: It sets the allotted time frame when you open port 3389, making you vulnerable to the public Internet.

  • Public Load Balancer With NAT or Network Address Translation

A Public Load Balancer generally goes with a public IP address, and a Network Address Translation (NAT) is a rule that transfers traffic from a particular port of the front-end IP address to a specific port of a back-end VM on its Private IP. So, if you want to access a VM with RDP, it doesn’t necessarily need to have a Public IP, and its private IP isn’t can not be seen on the Internet. The advantages are that it reduces the number of public IP addresses of Azure and load somewhat able to balance traffic across the virtual machines under it. This approach can produce specific limitations, so it may not be suitable for some types of scenarios.

  • Providing a Jumpshot VM

Instead of exposing your virtual machines to the public Internet, you can create a single VM – named the Jumphost – in Azure with the connection of RDP to the Internet. You can contact other VMs in the virtual network from this box.


There are many other ways to connect RDP with the Azure VMs, which make a secure connection without any threat of prying eyes from the Internet. So, you must try it and have a wonderful experience in the Microsoft remote desktop Azure services without a doubt.

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