By default the management interfaces (WebUI/SSH) of a Check Point firewall are using crypto settings that are not that great (MD5 and SSLv3, etc are enabled), but fortunately it is possible to change them.

SSH daemon is configured like in a normal Linux Distribution by just editing the /etc/ssh/sshd_config, Check Point in its support site also recommends you also modify the ssh client configuration located in /etc/ssh/ssh_config.  Basically in order to change the encryption algorithms available when connecting to the firewall using ssh add the following lines to the aforementioned configuration files using the vi command in Expert mode:

Ciphers aes256-ctr,aes256-cbc,aes128-ctr,aes192-ctr,aes128-cbc,aes192-cbc
MACs hmac-sha1

After modifying the config file restart the SSH server using the following command:

 service sshd restart

If everything is fine then your connection survives and if for some strange reason your ssh connectivity breaks and you can’t log back in you can undo the previous changes by using the terminal access that you can get in the WebUI.

Now that the SSHD settings have been changed, lets start changing the Cipher suites available for HTTPS used for WebUI. Just connect to command line using SSH and do the following in Expert mode.

  1. Backup the current file /web/templates/httpd-ssl.conf.templ:
    [Expert@HostName:0]# cp /web/templates/httpd-ssl.conf.templ /web/templates/httpd-ssl.conf.templ_ORIGINAL
  2. Edit the current /web/templates/httpd-ssl.conf.templ file:
    [Expert@HostName:0]# vi /web/templates/httpd-ssl.conf.templ
  3.  Find the line containing the SSLCipherSuite parameter and change the values behind it for example to ECDHE-RSA-AES256-SHA384:AES256-SHA256:!ADH:!EXP:RSA:+HIGH:+MEDIUM:!MD5:!LOW:!NULL:!SSLv2:!SSLv3:!eNULL:!aNULL:!RC4
  4. Close the editor by using :wq!  , the ‘!’ in the end will override the fact that the file has read only permissions.
  5. Update the current configuration of HTTPD daemon based on the modified configuration template:
    [Expert@HostName:0]# /bin/template_xlate : /web/templates/httpd-ssl.conf.templ /web/conf/extra/httpd-ssl.conf < /config/active
  6. To activate the configuration changes restart the HTTPD daemon by using the “tellpm” command:
    [Expert@HostName:0]# tellpm process:httpd2
    [Expert@HostName:0]# tellpm process:httpd2 t

To find out what you actually want to use as the SSLCipherSuite value you can use the cpopenssl to see what algorithms will be available with which value. Example:

[Expert@HostName:0]# cpopenssl ciphers -v 'ECDHE-RSA-AES256-SHA384:AES256-SHA256:!ADH:!EXP:RSA:+HIGH:+MEDIUM:!MD5:!LOW:!NULL:!SSLv2:!eNULL:!aNULL:!RC4' | sort -k1

Expected output:

AES128-SHA SSLv3 Kx=RSA Au=RSA Enc=AES(128) Mac=SHA1
AES256-SHA SSLv3 Kx=RSA Au=RSA Enc=AES(256) Mac=SHA1