Information for: DEVELOPERS   PARTNERS

Acquia Cloud Shield

Available strictly for Acquia Cloud Enterprise and Acquia Cloud Site Factory subscribers with dedicated load balancers and current-generation hardware.

Acquia Cloud Shield provides isolated networks for Acquia Cloud Enterprise applications. Subscriber deployments in an isolated network environment are separated from other subscriber deployments at the network level.

Benefits of using Acquia Cloud Shield

Acquia Cloud Shield combines the benefits of Acquia Cloud platform-as-a-service with extra security benefits and capabilities, giving you a greater degree of isolation for your Acquia Cloud instances.

Acquia Cloud Shield includes the following product features:

  • Acquia Cloud Shield access management: Provides self-service IP whitelisting for occasions when you must manage SSH access to the environments in your subscription.

  • Private IP range with optional VPN connection: Adds an optional Virtual Private Network (VPN) hosted by Acquia Cloud Enterprise to connect between Acquia Cloud Enterprise and your private network. The VPN connection ensures you have secure bi-directional interaction between your websites and your internal IT systems (such as a CRM). Packaged in the price of Acquia Cloud Shield is the VPN configured to connect Acquia Cloud Enterprise with one subscriber-defined gateway device point. Added virtual private cloud (VPC) peering connections are available for a fee.

    To enable the VPN, you must first buy a subscription to Acquia Cloud Enterprise.

    If you change endpoints during the Subscription Term, you will incur added fees of $250 per hour of work. For Acquia to enable the VPN connection, you must meet the technical requirements described in the Amazon VPC FAQs.

  • AWS VPC Peering Connection: Enables a VPC peering connection between your Acquia Cloud Shield VPC and another AWS VPC. You can enable added VPC peering connections for a fee.

Note for Acquia Search users

Although you can access search from your Acquia Cloud Shield applications, the Acquia Search servers are located outside of your Acquia Cloud Shield dedicated section. Acquia Cloud Shield doesn’t protect your search index, because of the Acquia Search servers’ location.

Getting started with Acquia Cloud Shield

To use Acquia Cloud Shield, ensure you buy Acquia Cloud Shield with your Acquia Cloud Enterprise or Acquia Cloud Site Factory subscription. Acquia then provisions your servers within your dedicated network.

Getting started with Acquia Cloud Shield with VPN

To use Acquia Cloud Shield with VPN, you must buy Acquia Cloud Shield with VPN and have either an Acquia Cloud Enterprise or Acquia Cloud Site Factory subscription. The following list describes the main steps to complete when configuring Acquia Cloud Shield with VPN:

  1. You buy and deploy a VPN device.
  2. You provide Acquia with detailed information about your VPN device, and your network.
  3. Acquia provisions and configures a dedicated section for your applications.
  4. Acquia provides you with the Internet Protocol Security (IPSec)/ Internet Key Exchange information to properly configure your VPN.


Acquia Cloud Shield only supports Internet Key Exchange version 1 (IKEv1).

Learn more by visiting the Acquia Academy (sign-in required) for the video Establishing a VPN connection.

For additional help, see the following articles:

Network information you provide to Acquia

For Acquia to configure Acquia Cloud Shield, you must provide Acquia with the following information:

  • Contact information (such as name, phone, and email) for the members of your internal network team.

  • VPN device details:

    • VPN device type (vendor and model)
    • The Gateway IP address of the subscriber VPN device

    Confirm your VPN device meets the requirements.

  • Network details, including the following:

    • A network diagram, showing which systems Acquia Cloud Shield will connect to

    • Maintenance plan or schedule for your network services and hardware

    • CIDR IP blocks


      Acquia Cloud Shield requires a private, non-routable /16 or /20 private address space conforming with RFC 1597. Acquia Cloud Shield can use private, non-routable /16 or /20 CIDR blocks from the,, or ranges. Blocks of this size provide resources for Acquia-controlled servers (such as Elastic Load Balancers) and other elastic scaling needs, and also provide expansion space for your application’s future needs.

    • Subnet allocations

    • A list of networks requiring traffic statically routed to them

  • (Optional) A name for the Acquia VPN. If you have various VPNs, providing a name to Acquia may be useful for later communication.

Contact your Acquia Account Manager for more information.

VPN device requirements

To connect to Acquia Cloud Shield with VPN, your network must use a VPN (a secure Internet gateway) using IPsec. Your VPN device must handle each of the following:

  • Establish IKEv1 Security Associations using pre-shared keys
  • Establish IPsec Security Associations in Tunnel mode
  • Use the AES 128-bit encryption function
  • Use the SHA-1 hashing function
  • Use Diffie-Hellman Perfect Forward Secrecy in “Group 2” mode
  • Perform packet fragmentation before encryption

The gateway devices listed here are compatible with Acquia Cloud Shield with VPN. Other devices may work, but Acquia doesn’t support them.

You must properly configure your network’s gateway to connect to Acquia Cloud Shield with VPN. After provisioning your dedicated section, Acquia will provide you with the configuration and VPN details containing the Pre-Shared Key (PSK) information you must use to properly configure your VPN. Using SSH, you will access the information stored in a secure location.

Acquia Cloud Shield uses Dead Peer Detection (DPD), exchanging UDP packets between VPN peers to ensure both ends are available. If no traffic crosses the VPN tunnel in ten seconds, Acquia Cloud Shield sends a request. Three successive requests without a response will cause Acquia Cloud Shield to close the VPN tunnel.

Initiating your Acquia Shield tunnel

After Acquia provisions Acquia Cloud Shield and provides connection information to you, it’s your responsibility to configure your VPN device, establish the secure tunnel, and keep the network connection alive.

You must also confirm your secondary tunnel is configured properly in case your primary tunnel becomes unavailable. When properly configured, your gateway must fail over to the secondary tunnel in your Acquia Cloud Shield tunnel pair, if needed.

Changing your IP addresses

Moving an existing application hosted by Acquia Cloud Enterprise or Acquia Cloud Site Factory to Acquia Cloud Shield with VPN will change your IP address, including any elastic IP addresses (EIPs). You can’t move IP addresses into or out of a VPC.

As a result, when you configure your application in Acquia Cloud Shield with VPN, you must point the DNS records of your application to the new IP address in the VPC. For more information, see Configuring DNS records for your application.