Securing XMPP

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Contents

Clients

need to add something...

Servers

An XMPP Server is considered secure when the following (minimum) items are present:

  • The server is running with a server certificate
  • The server is configured to not allow any cleartext communications - S2S and C2S
  • The server supports XEP-198
  • ...

Step1: Get a server certificate

Let's say you run an XMPP service for example.net (jids of user@example.net), you will need to order a certificate for with a subject or alt-name of example.net (not server.example.net) from your preferred cert provider (StartSSL offers free certificates and is quite good).

Step 2: Disable cleartext connections

These instructions will disable any cleartext communication between servers and client connections.

ejabberd

Make sure that your ejabberd.yml contains the following settings.

  • For client-to-server connections:
listen:
  -
    port: 5222
    module: ejabberd_c2s
    starttls_required: true
    certfile: "/etc/ejabberd/certificate.pem"
  • For server-to-server connections:
s2s_use_starttls: required
s2s_certfile: "/etc/ejabberd/certificate.pem"

Further help:

Prosody

Ensure that prosody.cfg.lua contains the following settings in the global section of your config, or under the specific VirtualHost you want to secure:

 c2s_require_encryption = true
 s2s_require_encryption = true

Further help:

Metronome

In Metronome's latest development tip, encryption requirement is the default setting, as long as TLS capability is available, and no configuration change is needed. Otherwise ensure that metronome.cfg.lua contains the following settings in the global section of your configuration:

 c2s_require_encryption = true
 s2s_require_encryption = true

Further help:

Tigase

See http://www.tigase.org/content/vhost-tls-required for more details:

--vhost-tls-required = true

By default Tigase will read VHosts certificates from certs/ subdirectory match domain name against .pem filename of the certificate. Alternatively configuration for particular vhost certificate could be specified explicitly in init.properties:

basic-conf/virt-hosts-cert-<domain>=path/to/cert.pem

TLS for s2s connection is enabled by default; no option to configure it as required (certain domains can be configured to skip TLS for s2s with following configuration. For more information: --s2s-skip-tls-hostnames):

--s2s-skip-tls-hostnames = domain1,domain2

In order to have improved security Tigase features "hardened mode" which turns off workaround for SSL issues, turns off SSLv2, forces enabling more secure ciphers suites and also forces requirement of StartTLS.

--hardened-mode=true

Further help:

Openfire

  1. Open the Openfire administration console
  2. Go to Server Settings under Server
  3. Then open Security Settings in the list to the left
  4. Check both radiobuttons labeled Required
  5. Check the checkbox marked Accept self-signed certificates
  6. Done!

Further help:

Step 3: Check your XMPP Server Security

Test your XMPP security to be sure.

Encryption Manifesto (archived)

Aim: Encrypt All XMPP Connections

This page provides instructions for XMPP server administrators to secure XMPP client and server connections ready for the following ubiquitous encryption manifesto test days:

  • January 4, 2014 - first test day requiring encryption
  • February 22, 2014 - second test day
  • March 22, 2014 - third test day
  • April 19, 2014 - fourth test day
  • May 19, 2014 - permanent upgrade to encrypted network

To achieve this, we need to:

  • Encrypt connections between clients and servers (C2S)
  • Encrypt server to server connections (S2S)