Cisco Live Milan 2015

WOW!

Photo 26-01-15 13 30 14That’s my first word if someone asks me about my trip to Cisco Live Milan 2015 last week. It was my first Cisco Live ever and I really should have been there years and years ago! All those great sessions, a lot of awesome people to have great conversations, meeting a lot of people you know from the community… Cisco Live is the place to be for every Cisco engineer / consultant.

This edition of Cisco Live Europe was in MiCo, Milano. I was really impressed by the size of the event: a lot of people recommend to bring your best walking shoes and I can only confirm this. There are 30 minutes in between sessions and if you’re unlucky, you really need thesPhoto 26-01-15 13 22 33e 30 minutes to find, walk and locate the room of your next session. Another very good impression was the amount of attandees and everything Cisco is doing to make the event as much as comfortable for everyone. You will find Cisco employees on every floor, on every corner to help you with all your questions: where is room x? At what time is lunch? Where is lunch?

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Cisco WSA Authentication

In this and other posts we’ll discuss the Cisco Web Security Appliance. This is the blog agenda:

Part 1: Introduction
Part 2: Installing
Part 3: Deploying Proxy Services
Part 4: Policies
Part 5: Acceptable use & HTTPS Inspection
Part 6: Authentication
Part 7: Defending malware

This is the 6th part of the series.

A proxy is no real proxy without user authentication. That’s what I’m going to discuss in this post. Authentication is needed for logging and user tracking.

Authentication options:

  • Basic (local accounts)
  • NTLMSSP (for Microsoft Active Directory)

In explicit forwarding mode you can use straightforward proxy authentication. In transparant mode you have to fool the WSA.

In case all authentication services are unavailable, you can choose to permit or block all traffic. You can find this setting in Network > Authentication, click Edit Global Settings.

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Cisco WSA Acceptable Use and HTTPS inspection

In this and other posts we’ll discuss the Cisco Web Security Appliance. This is the blog agenda:

Part 1: Introduction
Part 2: Installing
Part 3: Deploying Proxy Services
Part 4: Policies
Part 5: Acceptable use & HTTPS Inspection
Part 6: Authentication
Part 7: Defending malware

This is the 5th part of the series

How can you enforce the Acceptable use?

Acceptable use is mostly defined by Application Visibility Control (AVC). Websites are classified by a URL lookup in the cisco database, based on the URL itself, or a dynamic scan of the website.

To configure this, click Security Services > Acceptable Use Controls

avc

AVC is enabled by default.

HTTPS Inspection (HTTPS Proxy)

It’s getting more important to decrypt HTTPS sessions to check against your policies. You can receive a lot of nasty stuff inside your HTTPS session. But there is one major drawback: the WSA shows the user a SSL certificate of the WSA appliance. In almost all circumstances this certificate wouldn’t match all requirements, so the users receive SSL certificate errors. Make sure your users are familiar with your HTTPS inspection!

How does it works? It’s pretty simple: the WSA creates the HTTPS session to the webserver and creates a new HTTPS session to the user. The responses from the webserver are checked and scanned and deliverd over the new HTTPS session to the user.

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Cisco Champion 2015 Rob Rademakers

Cisco Champion 2015 Datacenter

Today is a big day in Cisco social networks: the Cisco Champions for 2015 are selected and I’m proud, honored and excited to announce that I’m elected as a Cisco Champion 2015 for datacenter 2015.

As you might now, I was a Cisco Champion too in 2014, that was the first year the program existed. The second year started today!

For more information about the Cisco Champion program, click here.

As another bonus this year, my colleague Rob Heygele is selected as Cisco Champion in Enterprise networks! Congrats to him and offcourse to all other fellow Champions of 2015!

Cisco WSA Policies

In this and other posts we’ll discuss the Cisco Web Security Appliance. This is the blog agenda:

Part 1: Introduction
Part 2: Installing
Part 3: Deploying Proxy Services
Part 4: Policies
Part 5: Acceptable use & HTTPS Inspection
Part 6: Authentication
Part 7: Defending malware

This is the 4th part of the series.

Creating policies is one the major (en most fun) part of the WSA. In this blog I’ll cover the configuration of access policies and identities.

Click  Web Security Manager > Access Policies

access policy default

Only one policy can be applied. This is based on first match (top-down). If no policy matches, the Global Policy will be used.

First, you have to create a identity. An identity doesn’t identify a user, but it identifies a client or transaction that may require authentication. Identity membership is determined before authentication is done. Policy group membership is determined after authentication is performed.

Click  Web Security Manager > Identities > add identity and create the identity, based on IP’s ip ranges or IP subnets. Possible identities are:

  • Kiosk users
  • Update agents
  • Company users

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