Ensure 'external scripts enabled' database flag for Cloud SQL SQL Server instance is set to 'off'

external scripts enabled enable the execution of scripts with certain remote language extensions. This property is OFF by default. When Advanced Analytics Services is installed, setup can optionally set this property to true. As the External Scripts Enabled feature allows scripts external to SQL such as files located in an R library to be executed, which could adversely affect the security of the system, hence this should be disabled.

Risk Level: Medium
Cloud Entity: GCP CloudSql
CloudGuard Rule ID: D9.GCP.VLN.06
Covered by Spectral: Yes
Category: Database


CloudSql where databaseVersion like 'SQLSERVER%' should have settings.databaseFlags contain [ name like 'external scripts enabled' and value like 'off' ]


From Portal

  1. Navigate to the instance where the flag needs to be set: https://console.cloud.google.com/sql/instances
  2. Click Edit Configurations
  3. Under flags section, choose add flag, look for 'external scripts enabled' and choose value - off.
  4. Save and review your changes

From TF
Set the flag 'external scripts enabled' to 'off':

resource 'google_sql_database_instance' 'default' {
	settings {
		database_flags {
			name  = 'external scripts enabled'
			value = 'off'

From Command Line

  1. First retrieve all existing flags values:
gcloud sql instances describe INSTANCE_NAME
  1. Add all existing flags and their value to the patch request - otherwise they will get set to their default value.
gcloud sql instances patch INSTANCE_NAME --database-flags (ExistingFlag1=Value1,ExistingFlag2=Value2,...),'external scripts enabled'=off


  1. https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/sql/database-engine/configure-windows/external-scripts-enabled-server-configuration-option?view=sql-server-ver15
  2. https://cloud.google.com/sql/docs/sqlserver/flags
  3. https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/sql/advanced-analytics/concepts/security?view=sql-server-ver15
  4. https://www.stigviewer.com/stig/ms_sql_server_2016_instance/2018-03-09/finding/V-79347

GCP CloudSql

Cloud SQL is a fully managed database service that makes it easy to set up, maintain, manage, and administer your relational PostgreSQL, MySQL, and SQL Server databases in the cloud.

Compliance Frameworks

  • CloudGuard GCP All Rules Ruleset
  • GCP CIS Controls V 8
  • GCP CIS Foundations v. 1.2.0
  • GCP CIS Foundations v. 1.3.0
  • GCP CIS Foundations v. 2.0
  • GCP CloudGuard Best Practices
  • GCP MITRE ATT&CK Framework v12.1
  • GCP NIST 800-53 Rev 5