Control access to apps based on user and device context

Context-Aware Access examples

Context-Aware Access gives you control over which apps a user can access based on their context, such as whether their device complies with your IT policy.

This article describes some of the most common use cases for Context-Aware Access and includes sample configurations.

How do I configure these use cases?
To configure any of these sample use cases, use the step-by-step instructions in:

Before you configure Context-Aware Access policies
Review the best practices for rolling out Context-Aware policies.

Allow access to contractors only through the corporate network

Many companies want to restrict contractor access to corporate resources. For example, companies who use contractors to answer general support calls or work at help centers and call centers. Similar to full-time employees, contractors must have a supported license to be covered by Context-Aware Access policies.

In this example, contractors get access to corporate resources only from a specific corporate IP address range.

Access level name contractor_access
A contractor gets access if they Satisfy all the attributes in the condition
Condition 1 attribute IP subnet
   74.125.192.0/18
Access level assignment Organizational units for contractors
All apps contractors use

Block access from known hijacker IP addresses

To protect company resources from being compromised, many companies block access to known high-risk sources.

In this example, IP address 74.125.195.105 is blocked. Users get access to corporate resources if their sessions originate from any other IP address. You can specify multiple IP addresses and ranges.

Access level name block_highrisk
A user gets access if they Satisfy all the attributes in the condition
Condition 1 attribute IP subnet
   74.125.195.105
Access level assignment Top-level organizational unit
All apps

Allow or disallow access from specific locations

If you have employees who regularly travel to remote corporate or partner offices, you can specify the geographical locations where they can access corporate resources.

For example, if a group of sales people regularly visit customers in Australia and India, you can limit the group's access to their home office and Australia and India. If they travel to other countries for a personal holiday as part of a business trip, they can’t access corporate resources from those other countries.

In this example, the sales group can access corporate resources only from the US (home office), Australia, and India.

Access level name sales_access
Sales gets access if they Satisfy all the attributes in the condition
Condition 1 attribute Geographic origin
   US, Australia, India
Access level assignment Group of sales people
All apps sales people use

You could also create a policy to deny access from specific countries by specifying that users get access if they don’t meet the conditions. You would list the countries from which you want to block access.

Use nested access levels instead of selecting multiple access levels during assignment

In some cases when you try to assign access levels to a given organizational unit or group and an application (or a set of applications), you might see an error message asking you to reduce the number of applications or access levels.

To prevent this error, you can reduce the number of access levels used during assignment by nesting them into a single access level. The nested access level joins multiple conditions with an OR operation, with each condition containing an individual access level.

In this example, USWest, USEast, and USCentral are in 3 separate access levels. Let’s say you want users to be able to access applications if they satisfy any of USWest OR USEast OR USCentral access levels.You can create a single nested access level (called USRegions) using the OR operator. When it comes time to assign the access levels, assign the access level USRegions to the application for the organizational unit or group.

 

Access Level name

USRegions

A user gets access if they

Satisfy the attributes in the condition

Condition 1 attribute

(only 1 access level per condition)

Access level

   USWest

Join condition 1 and condition 2 with

OR

A user gets access if they

Satisfy the attributes in the condition

Condition 2 attribute

Access level

   USEast

Join condition 2 and condition 3 with 

OR

A user gets access if they

Satisfy the  attributes in the condition

Condition 3 attribute

Access level

   USCentral

Require basic device security

Most enterprise companies now require employees to access corporate resources through devices that are encrypted and meet minimum operating system versions. Some also require that employees use company-owned devices.

You can configure these policies for all of your organizational units or only for those that work with sensitive data, such as company executives, finance, or human resources.

There are several ways you can configure a policy that includes device encryption, minimum operating system version, and company-owned devices. They each have advantages and disadvantages.

1 access level that contains all security requirements

In this example, device encryption, minimum operating system version, and company-owned device attributes are included in one access level. Users must meet all conditions to get access.

For example, if a user device is encrypted and is company-owned but doesn’t run a compliant version of the operating system, they are denied access.

Advantage: Easy to set up. When you assign this access level to an app, a user has to satisfy all requirements.
Disadvantage: To separately assign the security requirements to different organizational units, you need to create a separate access level for each security requirement.
Access level name device_security
A user gets access if they Satisfy all the attributes in the condition
Condition 1 attribute
(You can add all attributes to one condition or 
create 3 conditions and join them with AND.)
Device policy
   Device encryption = encrypted
   Company-owned device = required
   Minimum operating system version =
   Windows, Mac, Chrome versions

3 separate access levels

In this example, device encryption, minimum operating system version, and company-owned device attributes are in 3 separate access levels. Users must meet the conditions in only one access level to get access. It’s a logical OR of access levels.

For example, a user who has an encrypted device and runs an older version of the operating system on a personal device gets access.

Advantage: A granular way of defining access levels. You can separately assign access levels to different organizational units.
Disadvantage: Users have to meet the conditions in only one access level.
Access level name device_encryption
A user gets access if they Satisfy all the attributes in the condition
Condition 1 attribute

Device policy
   Device encryption = encrypted

 

Access level name corp_device
A user gets access if they Satisfy all the attributes in the condition
Condition 1 attribute

Device policy
   Company-owned device = required

 

Access level name min_os
A user gets access if they Satisfy all the attributes in the condition
Condition 1 attribute

Device policy
   Minimum operating system version = 
   Windows Mac, Chrome versions

1 access level with nested access levels

In this example, device encryption, minimum operating system version, and company-owned device security requirements are in 3 separate access levels. These 3 access levels are nested inside a fourth access level.

When you assign the fourth access level to apps, users must meet the conditions in each of the 3 nested access levels to get access. It’s a logical AND of access levels.

For example, a user who has an encrypted device and runs an older version of the operating system on a personal device is denied access.

Advantage: You retain the flexibility of separating security requirements across access levels 1, 2, and 3. Using access level 4, you can also enforce a policy with all security requirements.
Disadvantage: The audit log only captures access denied to access level 4 (not to access levels 1, 2, and 3), because access levels 1, 2, and 3 aren’t directly assigned to apps.

Create 3 access levels as described in “3 separate access levels” above: “device_encryption,” “corp_device,” and “min_os.” Then create a fourth access level called “device_security” that has 3 conditions. Each condition has an access level as its attribute. (You can add only 1 access level attribute per condition.)
Access level name device_security
A user gets access if they Satisfy all the attributes in the condition
Condition 1 attribute
(only 1 access level per condition)
Access level
   device_encryption
Join condition 1 and condition 2 with AND
A user gets access if they Satisfy all the attributes in the condition
Condition 1 attribute Access level
   corp_device
Join condition 2 and condition 3 with  AND
A user gets access if they Satisfy all the attributes in the condition
Condition 1 attribute Access level
   min_os

Related information

 

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