So I am about to embark on a client who is interested in two factor authentication in their existing Office 365 environment.
What is Two Factor Authentication?
Single factor authentication is via a single method such as a Username and Password.
Two Factor Authentication adds an extra measure into the mix to ensure that you are who you say you are. This could be an RSA Security Key or more recently the market is shifting towards using mobile phones as the security key with the use of automated phone calls, text messaging (SMS) or mobile apps.
In October 2012, Microsoft acquired a company called PhoneFactor (more info) which has been developing two factor authentication solutions in the cloud for a while now and recently the capabilities have been added to Office 365 in the form of a preview which is free to try for Administrators.
NB: Please be aware that this is currently in preview, so they are still working out the kinks, pricing model, release schedules etc..
Given that we are in preview, not everything will be perfect, but there is still options that you can try out now assuming you have an Enterprise plan.
Three options are available:
- The various pros and cons of each option are described below in the video presentation.
NB: I can confirm that this is not available on the P1/P2 plans but unsure about the small business plans.
How does it work?
As part of my research I came across this excellent presentation from Microsoft Consulting Services which goes into detail about how the solution works.
NB: Please note that some limitations exist with non-ADFS setups and local client software (Outlook, Office etc.). (it is a preview after all)
2nd Factor Authentication Options
So we know what two factor authentication is all about and we have seen how it is likely to work within Office 365, lets explore the options we have available to us:
Phone Call & SMS
Using any mobile phone (smart, non-smart or event an office phone), you can log-in with an automated phone call from Microsoft or an SMS Text Message which provides and authentication code.
Mobile App – Windows Phone 7 & 8
If you don’t have phone signal, then you can use generated no. authentication methods via a mobile app. Microsoft of course support their own platforms
- Release Details: PhoneFactor Extends Comprehensive Line of Authentication Solutions with App for Windows Phone
- App Download Link: http://www.windowsphone.com/en-gb/store/app/multi-factor-auth/0a9691de-c0a1-44ee-ab96-6807f8322bd1
- NB: Apps were originally called PhoneFactor but are now called Active Authentication
- Name Change Details: PhoneFactor Becomes Windows Azure Active Authentication
Mobile App – iOS / Android
The mobile app is also available for iOS and Android as well which pretty much covers most of the mobile market. Search for Active Authentication from the Microsoft Corporation or use the links provided below.
iOS (iPhone / iPad) App Download: https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/active-authentication/id475844606?mt=8
Android App Download: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.phonefactor.phonefactor&hl=en
That’s great, how do I get started?
Excellent question, it’s available in your Office 365 admin panel right now and is incredibly easy to setup without ADFS…
Login to your Office 365 admin portal, click Users and Groups:
Click the set up link shown above.
Now select the name you want to use two factor authentication with and click enable.
Please keep at least one admin account with single factor authentication whilst you are using this preview version.
NB: Admins are free to use the capability, standard users require a license.
Once you have turned it on against your admin user account. Log out and log back in. You will be asked to initially verify your second type of authentication.
Choose your preferred option from below:
NB: You will find this link useful later as in the preview there doesn’t appear to be a link within the Office 365 interface:
Even though it is Windows Azure based, login with your Office 365 account details.
That is it. You are setup and working.
Preview documentation is available on TechNet here:
- If you would like to use ADFS, take a look at the links above and perhaps contact your favourite Microsoft partner (hint: CPS (http://www.cps.co.uk) to help you out.
- Ok, v.long post today but hopefully you will all find it useful. Till the next time…
#SharePoint #ProjectServer community application updates #SP2010 #PS2010 #MSProject #ios #iphone #android
Another quick blog post to highlight some of the updates the community mobile app has received over the last few weeks:
Podcast links updated
- Mr Excel podcast – remember a lot of formulas can be used in calculated columns but also useful for Excel Services!!!
- Microsoft Update Center
For Microsoft Office and SharePoint / Project Server related products linking to the latest CU and Service Packs as well as older updates. (I don’t know about you but I always find it a nightmare finding update links)
SharePoint and related product feature comparisons
So you are at a client and they ask you whether a particular feature is in a certain version of the product. You think you know the answer, but you are not sure. So here is the answer, right on your phone. The Feature Comparison tables for SharePoint, Office, Lync and others as I find them.
Never be stuck again knowing which BCS features are in which version of the product again!
SharePoint User Group UK
SharePoint User Group (UK) dates updated (including the one I shall be speaking at. More about that in a blog post later)
Last of all I would like to say a big thank you for all the people who have downloaded the app so far. I am working on getting a version of the app onto Windows Phone 7, Blackberry and a number of other OS’s so watch this space!
Once again if you have any suggestions for the app, please let me know.
Podcasts now available on the #SharePoint / #ProjectServer community app #Android #iOS #SP2010 #PS2010 #MSProject
Another week and another update to the SharePoint and Project Server community mobile app.
This time, wrap your audio visual senses around these podcasts that stream directly from the application (watch out for your mobile data caps!!!)
I shall add more as I find them and as ever, if you have any suggestions for the application… get in contact.
The application is currently available for iOS (iPad / iPhone) and Android.
Further mobile app updates #iOS #Android #iPhone #SP2010 #SharePoint #PS2010 #ProjectServer #MSProject
Now that the Android release is out of the way, the application content can be updated.
New features in this content update:
- Location and date updates for Conferences, SharePoint Saturday’s and User Groups (UK)
- CodePlex Project video updates
- Minor link updates to SharePoint and Project Server RSS feeds including adding one of the site authors RSS feed for his new blog (Paul Mather: http://pwmather.wordpress.com)
If you have a blog, user group meeting or anything else you would like to add to the app, please get in contact.
Shenanigans community app now available on Android #in #PS2010 #ProjectServer #SP2010 #SharePoint #Android
As promised last week, the SharePoint (and Project Server) Shenanigans mobile application is now available for Google’s phone OS on Android Market.
Features are exactly the same as the iPhone version of the application and all future updates to the app will be kept in sync via in-app updates for both iPhone and Android.
Application Name: SP & PS Shenanigans
Application Categories: Social
Search Keywords: SharePoint, Project Server, Giles Hamson, Shenanigans, Social