SSL Decryption

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SSL Decryption

L1 Bithead

Hi guys,

Nowadays I am playing with a PA-VM (no license) and decryption policy. Basically there are many articles and that explain how Decryption policy works and how to set it up. I have checked and double checked my setting and I cannot make for instance work when I enable the Decryption. 


Here are the rules:Decryption RulesDecryption RulesSecurity RulesSecurity RulesCan you guys see any mistake on my settings?





Community Team Member

Hi @DaniloBarbosa,


Am I missing something because I don't see you allowing the facebook app in your policy which is what you're trying to achieve in your example ... correct ?  I see you only allowing ssl and web-browsing.


Also your policy order seems incorrect as you have a block all rule in front of your allow ssl and web-browsing rule as far as I see it, preventing you from ever hitting your allow rule. 


Cheers !


LIVEcommunity team member, CISSP
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You will need to remove the "application-default" on that rule, because once the SSL is stripped and the underlying application is seen, it's still on port 443 which is not in the list of default ports on 'web-browsing'.


The logic may seem odd, but it follows this flow:

1. Traffic is identified as SSL when the Client Hello is seen.

2. Decryption starts here, and when the TLS handshake is completed the app-id switches from "SSL" to "Web-browsing".

3. Because the app has changed, it is re-evaluated in security policy. Since the app is web-browsing, but it's not on port 80 as defined in the app, rule 4 will be skipped.

4. The application has no matching rules, so it falls to the Interzone-default which denies the rest of that session.

Hi @gwesson@DaniloBarbosa@kiwi


I think they should release an application list update, which add working port 443 for web-browsing application.


I also notice that once you decrypt traffic on 443-SSL it becomes 443-web-browsing, so policy rule that allow web-browsing on application-default will not work, because the application-default is 80.


You need to create another policy to allow web-browsing application on 443 port.



So here's the thing with what you are asking, it breaks the app-id for anyone that isn't decrypting traffic. So say for example the app-id is updated to allow tcp/443 in addition to the standard of tcp/80, for anyone that isn't decrypting traffic seeing web-browsing on tcp/443 would be a concern. 

Because of that, the guide for enabling SSL-Decryption specifically calls out the fact that you'll see web-browsing on tcp/443. As you have to actively enable SSL-Decryption, it makes sense to break things for people who are actively enabling a new feature versus breaking things for everybody else. 


Thank you for the reply,


So for the users who decrypting the traffic, do we need to create custom application for web-browsing on 443?


Because with the current situation I need to create another policy rule to allow web-browsing on 443.


I think it will be better to create new application like: Secure web-browsing.



That would be more of a personal preference. If you want to build out a new application signature and create a new app-id for identifying traffic you can certaintly do so; however, with that being said most environments would bypass that and simply allow web-browsing on tcp/443 via a seperate policy. 

Hi @gwesson,


I did follow you advice and changes the service from "application-default" to "any" but it did not work. 

Here is the Any on service tab for SSL and web-browsing. 


SSL with Any on service tab.SSL with Any on service tab.Then, I enabled the rule 5 (any application) but service TCP/443. Facebook access allowed like picture below. The rule basically says, any application on port 443 (TCP) is allowed. 


HTTPS with TCP/443 service only.HTTPS with TCP/443 service only.Another interesting point, the decryption rule is enable and very simple, but the certificate that I am getting is from not the self generated by the firewall. 


Decryption ruleDecryption ruleSSL certificate for decryption ruleSSL certificate for decryption rule

The decryption rule is not working because I should see the certificate from the firewall not from facebook. But let's not discuss this issue now, let's go back to the SSL/HTTPS issue. 


My goal is create a rule that allow HTTPS (application) on its default port (443) and protocol (TCP) only, any other application on tcp/443 will be blocked or if https on any port that is not 443 will be blocked. 


I don't want a generic rule allowing TCP on port 443, that would match any application. 




Hi @SShnap

I will try that. Maybe you gave me the answer and I didn't



Not yet SShnap, I cannot see what I am missing. 

Have you created an rule with application web-browsing and service-https that worked?


web-browsing with service-httpsweb-browsing with service-https

Hi @danilo.padula


Please check the logs if the traffic is being decrypted,

Pay attention, for Facebook site palo alto identify the application as facebook-base that's why it being blocked, for Facebook site you should add facebook-base for allowing it.

See my attachment, regular sites that palo alto identifies applicaiton as web-browsing will be match to that policy rule, if the site uses other application you need to allow that specific application.




It's still being blocked because you're only allowing 'web-browsing' and 'ssl'. Facebook has a large number of unique app-id definitions depending on what you're doing. From Applipedia:




Start with a rule allowing all apps for yourself, then use the traffic log to see the list of apps seen by the firewall when you hit that rule. Then, you can create a more complete rule to allow only what you want.

Hi @SShnap

I cannot chekc the logs because it is a VM without license. I am testing the solution before invest some money on it.





Hi @gwesson

I thought the main facebook page would pass on the web-browsing rule (without login into facebook), then if I log in all the extra "Apps" would need another rule. 


I will give a try. 


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