Home > Threat Management Gateway > Microsoft Reputation Services (MRS) Offline after December 31, 2015

Microsoft Reputation Services (MRS) Offline after December 31, 2015

December 15, 2015

Microsoft Reputation Services (MRS) Offline after December 31, 2015As I recently mentioned, Microsoft has discontinued and will be terminating their Microsoft Reputation Services (MRS) cloud URL categorization service on or shortly after December 31, 2015. Today, Microsoft released additional information vital to TMG administrators everywhere who are still relying on this service for URL filtering. Specifically, what happens with TMG once Microsoft officially turns off MRS and it is no longer available?

Bad things.

First, any firewall rules that rely on URL categorization to allow traffic will fail closed. That is, they will block all traffic. Second, any rules using URL categorization to deny traffic will fail open and allow that traffic instead. Finally, there is potential performance degradation that may occur with TMG after the service is disabled by Microsoft.

What to do?

First, update any TMG firewall rules that use URL Categories or URL Category Sets. You can replace them with Domain Name Sets or URL Sets, if desired. Next, disable the use of URL filtering in TMG by opening the TMG management console, right-clicking Web Access Policy and choosing Configure and then URL Filtering. Uncheck the box next to Enable URL Filtering and then click Ok.

Microsoft Reputation Services (MRS) Offline after December 31, 2015

Finally, consider a replacement solution for TMG’s URL filtering. There are a number of solutions available, both on-premises and cloud-based, that are capable replacements. The Zscaler solution is highly effective, and if you’re looking for a low-buck alternative, consider something like OpenDNS. There are many more, I’m sure.

Good luck!

  1. January 1, 2016 at 4:32 pm

    Microsoft (or its outsourced vendors) seem to have shutdown this service at approximately 10:36 pm CST on 12/31/2015. Interestingly, I am still getting intermittent results. I believe that Microsoft utilizes numerous 3rd parties for their URL filtering service. I suspect some will be shutting down at different dates/times after 12/31…

  2. January 4, 2016 at 10:16 am

    Thanks for the update Mike! 🙂

  3. Airinen
    January 31, 2016 at 10:38 pm

    It’s still alive… When they will shut it down?

  4. February 1, 2016 at 1:59 pm

    No idea. I would expect any time though! They must have had a few big customers still using it. 😉

  1. No trackbacks yet.
Comments are closed.