Microsoft Graph PowerShell offers a powerful way to manage and handle administrative tasks for Microsoft 365 and Azure AD through the command line. However, just as with any powerful tool, ensuring security is paramount. This guide delves into the security considerations when using Microsoft Graph PowerShell and presents actionable steps to enhance its usage securely.
Security Considerations for Microsoft Graph PowerShell
Default Application Identification
Upon connecting to Microsoft Graph with delegate permissions, a default enterprise application named ‘Microsoft Graph Command Line Tools’ is registered within your tenant. Surprisingly, the application ID (’14d82eec-204b-4c2f-b7e8-296a70dab67e’) remains consistent across all tenants. This uniformity makes the application easily identifiable, which can be concerning from a security perspective.
Global Admin Consent Requirement
While connecting with delegate permissions is straightforward, it requires global admin rights in the tenant to consent to permissions for the ‘Microsoft Graph Command Line Tools’ application. These permissions are permanently assigned to the application, raising security considerations.
Permanent Permissions Assignment
Once a connection is established, permissions don’t need reconsenting for future sessions. Over time, permissions can accumulate and result in over-privileged sessions, especially concerning when dealing with third-party managed IT providers.
Default User Assignment
The default setting for the ‘Microsoft Graph Command Line Tools’ application is to not require user assignment. This enables any user in the environment to use the ‘Connect-MgGraph’ cmdlet in PowerShell, granting them access to the data within their user context. This opens avenues for data exfiltration in case of a compromise.
Removing consented permissions isn’t straightforward. As permissions build up, sessions may become over-privileged. Even when you delete and recreate the application, ensuring ‘Assignment required’ property is updated becomes essential.
Conditional Access Limitations
While Conditional Access can be used to restrict application access, it’s challenging to target ‘Microsoft Graph PowerShell’ specifically. Conditional Access settings may need to be broader, affecting other applications as well.
How to Secure Microsoft Graph PowerShell Access
Limit User Application Consent
Reduce the scope of user consent for applications to view account details. Modify settings to ensure only minimal, low-risk information can be consented to by users.
Require Assignment for Default App
Set the ‘Assignment required’ property for the ‘Microsoft Graph Command Line Tools’ app to ‘Yes’. This restricts access to specific users/groups, preventing general access.
Review Global Admins
Regularly review global admin accounts, ensuring only necessary users have such privileges. Use Privileged Identity Management (PIM) for monitoring and control.
Utilize Custom Applications
Create specific Microsoft Graph Applications with necessary permissions instead of relying solely on the default ‘Microsoft Graph Command Line Tools’ app. This prevents over-privileged applications.
Employ Unique Identities
Use separate user accounts for administrative tasks and enforce strong conditional access for these accounts. Although ‘Microsoft Graph PowerShell’ isn’t directly targetable, applying stricter conditional access enhances security.
Microsoft Graph PowerShell presents a potent way to manage Microsoft 365 and Azure AD, but it demands careful attention to security. By understanding the unique security considerations, implementing best practices, and continuously educating your IT staff, you can harness the power of this tool while safeguarding your organization’s data and infrastructure. In a rapidly evolving landscape, where security is paramount, taking proactive steps to secure access to Microsoft Graph PowerShell is not an option—it’s a necessity.