Remote access best practices

Decisions on the best way to provide remote access will vary depending on the tools you have chosen. Security guru Roberta Bragg shares her thoughts on the matter.

Decisions on the best way to provide remote access will vary depending on the tools you have chosen. Here are some...


  • Install and test RRAS servers before making them IAS (Internet Authentication Services) clients.
  • Immediately after installation, back up the IAS database file, ias.mdb, from the %systemroot%system32ias folder.
  • Back up the ias.mdb file whenever changes to the IAS configuration are made.
  • The IAAS and RRAAS servers should be dedicated servers. This will help eliminate the possibility that unauthorized users will gain access and weaken the security configuration.
  • Physically secure IAS, VPN and RRAS servers.
  • Protect IAS and VPN routers behind a firewall.
  • Turn on the account lockout feature.
  • Disable authentication protocols you do not use. Do not use PAP (Password Authentication Protocol) unless you must support legacy systems.
  • Determine desired logging for audit purposes and back up IAS logs.
  • Do not use telnet.
  • Secure remote administration sessions with IPsec or with VPNs if these sessions are being initiated externally to your network.
  • Increase encryption levels on Terminal Services when providing remote access.

To learn more about Windows 2000 Security, or to buy this book, click here.

This was first published in January 2001

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