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Barracuda Web Application Firewall

Pre-Authentication for ActiveSync

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Exchange ActiveSync

Exchange ActiveSync (EAS) is a synchronization protocol that enables users to synchronize their mobile phones/devices with their Exchange Mailbox, so they can access e-mail messages, calendar information, contacts and tasks associated with the Microsoft Exchange server. Users can also manage their deleted items folder, e-mail signature and automatic reply settings. For more information, refer to the Exchange ActiveSync article in the Microsoft documentation.

Pre-Authentication

Pre-Authentication is a mechanism that allows a trusted third party to validate a user’s identity before accessing the Exchange Mailbox. The Barracuda Web Application Firewall acts as a trusted third party that performs pre-authentication before processing the request to your Exchange Mailbox, i.e. when a user attempts to access a mail application, the Barracuda Web Application Firewall authenticates the user by validating the user credentials (username and password) with the Active Directory, and then processes the request to the mail application.  

If you want the Barracuda Web Application Firewall to perform pre-authentication for your Exchange Mailbox, follow the steps below:

  1. Configuring the Barracuda Web Application Firewall for ActiveSync
    1. Create an HTTPS Service
    2. Associate OWA (2010 or 2013) Policy with the Service
    3. Create an LDAP Authentication Service
    4. Associate the Authentication Service with the Service
    5. Add Authorization Policy for the Service
    6. (Optional) Configure Session Timeout for ActiveSync
  2. Configuring the Mobile Phone for ActiveSync

Step 1 - Configuring the Barracuda Web Application Firewall for ActiveSync

Perform the steps below to configure the Barracuda Web Application Firewall for ActiveSync:

Step 1 (a) - Create an HTTPS Service

Create an HTTPS service by following the steps below:

  1. Go to the BASIC > Services page.
  2. In the Add New Service section, specify values for the following:
    1. Service Name - Enter a name for the service.
    2. Type - Select HTTPS.
    3. Version - Select the Internet Protocol version (IPv4 or IPv6) for the service.
    4. Virtual IP Address - Enter the virtual IP address that needs to be used for accessing this service.
    5. Port - Enter the port number on which your web server responds.
    6. Version - Select the Internet Protocol version (IPv4 or IPv6) for the server that hosts the service.
    7. Real Servers - Enter the IP address of the server that hosts the service. This is the back-end server that is protected by the Barracuda Web Application Firewall. Note: The IP address specified should be of an HTTPS Server.
    8. Service Groups - Select the group under which the service should be added.
    9. Certificate - Select a certificate from the drop down list. To upload a certificate, refer to the steps mentioned in the How to Add an SSL Certificate article.
    10. Click Add

Step 1 (b) - Associate OWA (2010 or 2013) Policy with the Service

  1. Go to the BASIC > Services page.
  2. In the Services section, click Edit next to the service created in Step 1 (a) – Create an HTTPS Service.
  3. In the Service window:
    1. Scroll down to the Basic Security section.
    2. Select owa2010 or owa2013 as the Web Firewall Policy for the service.
    3. Specify values for other parameters as required and click Save.

Step 1 (c) - Create an LDAP Authentication Service

An LDAP server should be configured as the authentication service on the ACCESS CONTROL > Authentication Services page, in the LDAP tab. The Barracuda Web Application Firewall uses this information to communicate with the LDAP server to authenticate a user. To configure an LDAP server, refer to the steps mentioned under Configuring LDAP Database Server in the How to Configure Authentication and Access Control (AAA) article.

Step 1 (d) - Associate the Authentication Service with the Service

  1. Go to the ACCESS CONTROL > Authentication Policies page.
  2. In the Authentication Policies section, click Edit Authentication next to the service created in Step 1 – Create an HTTPS Service. The Edit Authentication Policies page appears.
  3. In the Edit Authentication Policy section:
    1. Status - Set to On.
    2. Authentication Service - Select the LDAP authentication service created in Step 1 (c) – Create an LDAP Authentication Service.
    3. Specify values for other parameters as required and click Save.

Step 1 (e) - Add Authorization Policy for the Service

  1. Go to the ACCESS CONTROL > Authentication Policies page.
  2. In the Authentication Policies section, click Add Authorization next to the service created in Step 1 – Create an HTTPS Service. The Add Authorization Policy page appears.
  3. In the Add Authorization Policy section, do the following configuration:
    1. Policy Name – Enter a name for the policy.
    2. Status – Set to On.
    3. URL Match – Enter the URL that needs to be matched in the request. Any request matching the configured “URL” and “Host” is subjected to LDAP authentication. For example, if the web server URL is https://www.abc.com/sports/Tennis/group1, https://www.abc.com/sports/Football/group1, etc., then the URL Match can be one of the following: "/sports/Tennis/group1” OR “/sports/Tennis/*" OR  “/sports/*” OR “/*”.
    4. Host Match – Enter the host name to be matched against the host in the request. For example, if the web server URL is "https://www.abc.com", then the Host Match should be "www.abc.com".
    5. Login Method - Select HTTP ActiveSync.
    6. Specify values for other parameters as required and click Save.

Step 1 (f) - (Optional) Configure Session Timeout for ActiveSync

You can configure the session timeout for ActiveSync by editing the authentication policy associated with the service. Session Timeout for ActiveSync is an advanced feature, therefore, set Show Advanced Settings to Yes under Advanced Settings on the ADVANCED > System Configuration page, and perform the following steps:

  1. Go to the ACCESS CONTROL > Authentication Policies page.
  2. Click Edit Authentication next to the service created in Step 1 (a) - Create an HTTPS Service. The Edit Authentication Policies page appears.
  3. In the Edit Authentication Policy section:
    1. Click Show Advanced Settings.
    2. Scroll down to the Session Control subsection.
      1. Session Timeout for ActiveSync - Set the time (in minutes) that an ActiveSync session can remain valid, after which the Barracuda Web Application Firewall will communicate with the authentication server to validate the credentials again. By default, it is 480 minutes (8 hours).
      2. Modify the values of other parameters (if required).
    3. Click Save.

Step 2 - Configuring the Mobile Phone for ActiveSync

Perform the following steps on your mobile phone:

  1. Locate Settings > Accounts in your mobile phone.
  2. Select Add Account > Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync and configure the following details:
  3. Account Details:
    1. Email address: Enter the email address. Example: user2@exch.adfs.com
    2. Domain\user name: Enter the domain name of your organization followed by user name. Example:  exch\user2
    3. Password: Enter the password. Example: *******
  4. Exchange Server Details:
    1. Server: Enter the Virtual IP (VIP) address of the service configured in Step 1 (a) – Create an HTTPS Service.
    2. Port: Enter the port number. Example: 443
  5. Security Type:
    1. SSL/TLS (Accept all certificates)
  6. Select Save/Done.

Logs

All authentication and subsequent requests that pass-through the Barracuda Web Application Firewall are logged in the BASIC > Access Logs page. The access logs generated for ActiveSync contain the user-id, device-id, device-type, etc.

Logs-ActiveSync.png

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