Setting up MFA with Duo

strongDM permits setting up multi-factor authentication (MFA) with Duo. Here’s how to set it up.

Setup with Duo

The first part of the setup process takes place on the Duo website. Log in as an administrator and perform the following steps.

  1. Go to Applications, then Protect an Application

    Duo/Applications

  2. From the list of applications, find Web SDK and select Protect this Application

    Web SDK

  3. Note the integration key, secret key, and API hostname, as they will be needed later

    Details/Keys

  4. Under Settings, change the name to something like Organization strongDM
  5. Set the policy, voice greeting, and self-service options according to your organization’s preferences
  6. Save changes

You’re done here, but keep this browser window open to copy the key and API information in Step 3 below.

Setup with strongDM

The setup continues on the strongDM Admin UI.

  1. Go to Settings, then Authentication

    Settings/Authentication

  2. Enable MFA, and select Duo from the drop-down menu
  3. Copy and paste the integration key, secret key, and API hostname from the Duo page

    MFA Setup

  4. Set the idle time (default 2 hours)

    Note: This determines when your strongDM login session will lock and require reauthorization with MFA to continue using it.

  5. Click Test MFA to test the MFA settings. This will require your admin account to be registered as a user in Duo

    MFA Test Success

  6. Click Activate to enable Duo MFA. This will pop up a warning message that users will be unable to log in without MFA enrollment going forward

    MFA Warning

    Warning: Ensure that Test MFA is successful before activating MFA, or your admin account may become locked out!

Logging in with Duo MFA enabled

The login process once Duo MFA is enabled has only one change: after entering the username and password, the login page will say ‘Waiting for MFA…’ until the Duo challenge has been accepted. The process is similar for SDM GUI and SDM CLI logins.

Registering a new user with Duo MFA enabled

When Duo MFA is enabled, the new user registration process will halt when the user clicks the link in the invitation email, then display a link to the Duo self-enrollment process. Once this process is complete, the user will be able to return to the strongDM window and complete the initial login process.