Skip to main content

Announcing #WMUG_NL Tuesdays Webinar 13 on October 27th featuring Erik Loef and Kenneth van Surksum

For Tuesday, October 27th we are proud to announce that Erik Loef, CTO and Microsoft MVP at Proxsys, and Kenneth van Surksum, Modern Workplace consultant at Insight24 will host a session about: “What is this Modern Authentication everyone is talking about, and why you should phase out Legacy authentication?”

Read More

Azure AD Continuous access evaluation (CAE), a first look

In April 2020 Alex Weinert, Director of Identity Security at Microsoft announced that Microsoft was working on moving towards real time policy and security enforcement. The first implementation for this move is now available as an option you can enabled within Azure AD, called Continuous access evaluation (CAE). The functionality released in April was only applicable for customers using the Azure AD Security defaults, on which I wrote a blogpost in January this year. Yesterday (October 9th 2020) though, Alex Simons announced that the CAE functionality is now also available for customers using Conditional Access policies. Keep in mind though that at time of writing this functionality is still in preview, and works with Exchange Online, SharePoint Online and Teams for now.

Continuous access evaluation allows for a quicker response by forcing an access token refresh in case of a certain events taking place. In this version of the preview the following events will be supported:

  • User Account is deleted or disabled
  • Password for a user is changed or reset
  • MFA is enabled for the user
  • Admin explicitly revokes all Refresh Tokens for a user
  • Elevated user risk detected by Azure AD Identity Protection
Read More

Announcing #WMUG_NL Tuesdays Webinar 12 featuring Thijs Lecomte

Due to the COVID-19 crisis, we (the Windows Management User Group Netherlands) were forced to move our activities to virtual events, which we call WMUG_NL Tuesdays Webinars.

For Tuesday, October 13th we are proud to announce that Thijs Lecomte, senior Microsoft 365 consultant at The Collective Consulting and technical editor for the Microsoft 365 Security for IT Pros ebook will host a session about: “Managing Enterprise Applications in Azure AD”

Read More

Assigning groups to Azure AD roles and Privileged access groups, a first look!

On August 13th 2020, Alex Simons (Microsoft Identity PM) announced that assigning groups to Azure AD roles in now in public preview. This feature is one of the most requested features to be found in the Azure AD feedback forum.

I have been following this feature request for a while now, and up until recently Microsoft stated that implementing Azure AD role assignment for Azure AD groups wasn’t the issue, the issue was more related to who is able to manage those groups. For example, if enabled how can we circumvent that someone with the “User Administrator” role (capable of adding users to groups) is capable of adding someone to the group used to assign Global Administrator rights. When implemented incorrectly, this new “feature” could then introduce a new security risk in your environment.

Assigning groups to Azure AD roles requires an Azure AD Premium P1 license at minimum, for the Privileged Identity Functionality an Azure AD Premium P2 license is needed.

Disclaimer: This post reflects the status of assigning groups to Azure AD roles as of August 20, 2020. Functionality may change, even right after this post has been published.

So, let’s walk through on what was announced and see..

Read More

Limit Access to Outlook Web Access, SharePoint Online and OneDrive using Conditional Access App Enforced Restrictions

One of the scenario’s we can build with Conditional Access, is the scenario where we restrict access inside the web application itself. By doing so, you could for example limit the functionality of the web applications on non-managed devices, or when accessing the web application from a country where your company normally doesn’t operate. The web applications can be configured to behave differently if the user is applicable for a Conditional Access policy where App Enforced restrictions are configured.

Within the Office 365 suite of applications, the following web applications are supported for App Enforced Restrictions:

  • Outlook Web Access
  • SharePoint and OneDrive

In this post I will go into detail on how to setup these app enforced restriction and what the expected behavior will be from an end-user perspective.

Read More

May 2020 update of the Conditional Access Demystified Whitepaper, Workflow cheat sheet, Implementation workflow and Documentation spreadsheet

In August last year, I published eight articles in a series on Conditional Access, and later when finished I decided to bundle those articles in a paper which I made available on the TechNet Gallery. In March this year, Microsoft decided to retire the TechNet Gallery, so I had to find another solution to host this paper and some of the additional workflows and spreadsheets I posted as well. For now I’ve decided to host these on GitHub since that is an easy accessible location as well.

The articles I wrote at that time, will remains as is, and I’ve decided to update the paper once in a while to reflect the current status of Conditional Access. Even though some of the information in the articles is outdated, I still think that they can be of value.

Below I’ve summarized the articles I published last year:

Read More

Some welcome additions to the Admin consent workflow in Azure AD

Update October 7 2020: This functionality is now GA, see Publisher verification and app consent policies are now generally available

In February this year, I wrote an article about Admin consent in Azure Active Directory. The article titled: “Did you already modify your Azure AD consent defaults settings? Here is why you should“, explained why giving end-users within your Azure AD the ability to give consent for every Application might not be such a good idea.

While disabling this option for the end-users is recommended by Microsoft, and having a workflow in place to review any requests and approve if found valid is a more secure solution it introduced an administrative burden since each request must be reviewed by one of the defined users in the list of users to review admin consent requests.

In order to address this, Microsoft made some changes to the way the Admin consent workflow is working which allows an Azure AD administrator more control over which requests must be approved and which are allowed automatically.

Note: This post reflects the status of Admin consent as of May 22, 2020. Functionality may change, even right after this post has been published.

Read More

Azure AD Identity Protection deep dive

One of the advantages of Microsoft having many customers using its services is that Microsoft can leverage data from those customers and apply some real fancy Machine Learning on that data, coming from Azure AD, Microsoft Accounts and even Xbox services.

Based on all that data the Machine Learning capabilities are able to identify identity risks. Based on the risk, automatic investigation, remediation and sharing of that data with other solutions able to leverage it is possible. The outcome of risk is expressed as either High, Medium, Low or No Risk. This outcome can later be used to define policies.

By leveraging Azure AD Identity Protection you are able to use the signals provided by Microsoft and trigger “actions” – the signals can also be leveraged in your conditional access policies.

This article covers the following topics:

Disclaimer: This post reflects the status of Azure AD Identity Protection as of April 7th 2020. Functionality may change, even right after this post has been published.

Read More

Lessons learned while implementing Azure AD Privileged Identity Management (PIM)

In this blogpost I will share my experiences with implementing Azure AD Privileged Identity Management (PIM).  PIM is a service that enables you to manage, control, and monitor access to important resources in your Azure environment. These resources include resources in Azure AD, Azure, and other Microsoft Online Services like Exchange Online, SharePoint Online or Microsoft Intune. 

PIM provides the following functionality: 

  • Just-in-time privileged access to Azure AD and Azure resources 
  • Assign time-bound access to resources using start and end dates 
  • Require approval to activate privileged roles 
  • Enforce multi-factor authentication to activate any role 
  • Use justification to understand why users activate 
  • Get notifications when privileged roles are activated 
  • Conduct access reviews to ensure users still need roles 
  • Download audit history for internal or external audit 

This article will cover the following topics:

Note: This post reflects the status of Azure AD Privileged Identity Management as of March 24th 2020. Functionality may change, even right after this post has been published.

Read More

License requirements for administering Microsoft 365 services

Microsoft licensing is tough and vague but something we must deal with while implementing our solutions. I’m also aware that some of the features I describe on my blog are only available in the most expensive licensing options Microsoft provides, making some of the features I describe not usable for some of my readers.

Update June 23rd 2020: Microsoft has removed the Intune license requirement for administrators, see this blogpost by Peter van der Woude for more information: Quick tip: Allow access to unlicensed admins

If you administer Microsoft 365 services like Azure Active Directory (AzureAD), Exchange Online (EXO), SharePoint Online (SPO), Intune and many other products the license requirements for your administrative accounts are extra vague. I’ve asked Microsoft in December last year to clarify this, but until now no response was given.

There is some fragmented information available in the Microsoft documentation, that in combination with some other information to be found on the internet, like on twitter concludes that the license requirements are indeed very vague and could really use some official documentation from Microsoft to clear things up.

One thing in known, is that when asked about licensing requirements for the online services provided by Microsoft the statement returned is: “When the user benefits from the service, a license is required”

So let’s see what I found available online and see if it makes sense in some way…

Read More