Browser-based Remote Access
By Bob Corum, Network Services, OIT
The Office of Information Technology (OIT) has implemented a new remote access service, Juniper, available to users as of March 1, 2007. The service allows for browser-based, secure connections to State of Maine network resources. Via a browser, the basic user level will be able to connect to Outlook Web Access (OWA), TAMS, INET, and their file shares on remote file servers. The next level of service will allow users with special application access requirements to connect to those applications in addition to the basic service offering. In the event that those levels are not sufficient, a third level of access will provide full VPN tunneling, similar to Secure Remote.
Testing of the Juniper system has proven to eliminate a majority of the problematic behaviors of Secure Remote. For example, it eliminates the issue of trying to connect to the state’s resources from a hotel that also uses the 10.0.0.0 IP address scheme. Juniper has also provided a smooth access method for some agencies that could not get Secure Remote to function properly.
Juniper provides a higher level of anti-virus protection for the state by enforcing the need for a valid anti-virus program on the accessing PC. This feature is called Host Checker. If your PC fails Host Checker, you will receive a warning message, but you will still be allowed to use the basic Web access level minus file shares.
Coming features include:
- Secure Meeting which provides encrypted meetings for collaborations
- Secure Virtual Desktop which allows files to be viewed from a kiosk then removes all file residue for that session and PC
To access the state’s network via Juniper, you need to meet the following requirements:
- have a browser on the PC (IE-6, IE-7, Firefox, etc.)
- have a valid Active Directory user account and user id (e.g. john.doe) (Vendors and other special accounts may be authenticated by Securid alone)
- have a valid RSA SecurID card
- have anti-virus software with the latest updates for complete access
For more information, contact the OIT Network Systems Group at 624-8828.