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Author's profile photo Ricardo Israel Mata Viejo

How To .. Configure Inbound AS2 with Dynamic Encryption and Signature Verification using Partner Directory on Cloud Integration

This blog will focus on configuring SAP BTP Cloud Integration AS2 Sender adapter and Partner Directory to dynamically select the security artifacts used for Encryption and Signature Verification by providing step-by-step instructions.

Bonus: Additionally will cover AS2 Outbound Adapter configuration using Encryption and Signature Verification.

Scenario

Our company R-Co is engaging organizations “Alpha” and “Bravo” and has agreed to exchange EDI documents through AS2 protocol, each of them has its respective security artifacts (Keypair, public and private certificates) which are used to secure the communication and protect the data exchanged.

Requirement

Our company has requested to build an integration service to exchange EDI documents that support multiple partners using AS2 protocol over HTTPS, authenticating using TLS mutual authentication, all messages must be encrypted and signed using specific certificates per partner.

Solution

Initial%20Solution

Organization Alpha will be Partner_A
Using:
Signing Algorithm – SHA1
Encryption Algorithm – 3DES
Signed MDN Algorithm – SHA1
X.509 – SXXXXXX813.p12

Organization Bravo will be Partner_B
Using:
Signing Algorithm – SHA512
Encryption Algorithm – AES256
Signed MDN Algorithm – SHA512
X.509 – SXXXXXX184.p12

Our company will be R-Co using SAP BTP Cloud Integration
Service Endpoint: https://r-co.it-cpi003-rt.cfapps.us10.hana.ondemand.com/as2/as2
Message Subject: msgB2BPartners
X.509 – Tenant Keypair: sap_cloudintegrationcertificate

Basic Certificate Usage

Let’s understand how a basic setup works.

B2B Sender Partner
Function Signature Self Private Key
Function Encryption B2B Receiver’s Public Key
Function MDN Verify Signature B2B Receiver’s Public Key

 

B2B Receiver Partner
Function Verify Signature B2B Sender’s Public Key
Function Decryption Self Private Key
Function MDN Signature Self Private Key

Now mapping to our scenario

Partner A
KeyStore Key Pair Self Private Key SXXXXXX813.p12
Self Public Key
Self Public Certificate SXXXXXX813.cer
B2B Sender’s Public Key Certificate sap_cloudintegrationcertificate.cer
Cloud Integration
Load Balancer Root Certificate
DigiCert Global Root G2.cer

 

Partner B
KeyStore Key Pair Self Private Key SXXXXXX184.p12
Self Public Key
Self Public Certificate SXXXXXX184.cer
B2B Sender’s Public Key Certificate sap_cloudintegrationcertificate.cer
Cloud Integration
Load Balancer Root Certificate
DigiCert Global Root G2.cer

 

Cloud Integration
KeyStore Key Pair Self Private Key sap_cloudintegrationcertificate.p12
Self Public Key
Self Public Certificate sap_cloudintegrationcertificate.cer
B2B Receiver’s Public Key Certificate SXXXXXX813.cer alias -> partner_a_813
SXXXXXX184.cer alias -> partner_b_184
Cloud Integration
Load Balancer Root Certificate
DigiCert Global Root G2.cer

Build

Now that we have defined how we should communicate with our partners let’s create our service.

Step 1: Create iFlow with Inbound AS2 Sender Adapter and Oubound JMS Receiver Adapter.

You may download the iFlow following link >> download

Note: I have included a script (optional) not in the scope of this blog, details can be found in the official documentation.
Note: In a productive scenario you may use EDI Integration Templates for SAP Integration Advisor >> “EDI to SAP SOAP – Inbound” or “EDI to SAP IDoc – Inbound”. Another option might be that you are building a custom iFlow and need to define an entry or routing iFlow for all your partners using the AS2 protocol

 

Step 2: Configure Inbound AS2 Sender Adapter.

Note: Link to the documentation here.

Processing Tab:

Message-ID Left & Right: We will configure a *wildcard* as we are not expecting any specific details from partners.

Partner AS2 ID: We will configure a *wildcard* to be able to receive multiple partners in the same iFlow.

Own AS2 ID: R-Co // We will set our company’s unique identifier.

Message Subject: msgB2BPartners // Message header of the incoming AS2 message.

The rest of the parameters we can leave as default values, if needed please refer to the documentation for all capabilities of the adapter, for now, we would be using the default role, and concurrent or parallel processes is recommended to be set at the minimum (1) per worker node.

Security Tab:

Decrypt Message: Checked // Message will be encrypted and sender side, decrypt is mandatory.

Private Key Alias: pd:ReceiverPrivateKey // Private key alias will be assigned at authentication via partner directory. The Keypair must be imported into the tenant’s keystore.

Verify Signature: Trusted Certificate // Signature will be validated against a certificate in the tenant’s keystore.

Public Key Alias: pd:SenderPublicKey // Public key alias will be assigned at authentication via partner directory. The certificate must be imported into the tenant’s keystore.

Note: However the settings of these parameters if Partner Directory entities are set, partner directory takes precedence and overwrites any configuration on the adapter, please find further details on official documentation.

MDN Tab:

Private Key Alias for Signature: sap_cloudintegrationcertificate // This could be any Keypair in the tenant’s keystore, recommended to use own tenant keypair.
Note: At the time of the writing of this blog this parameter could not be set dynamically.

The rest of the parameters will keep them with default values.

Certificates

Prerequisite: Exchange certificates with your partners.

A) sap_cloudintegrationcertificate. Navigate ➡️ Monitor >> Manage Security >> Keystore >> select certificate >> Actions >> Download Certificate

B) DigiCert Global Root G2 (Load Balancer root + chain). Navigate ➡️ Monitor >> Manage Security >> Connectivity Tests >> TLS. Type iFlow base URL and click Send. Click the Download button.

Note: Private certificates should never be exchanged, only share public certificates (.cer / .der) and complete chain (.pb7)

Step I: Create Service Instance and Service Key type X.509 for client certificate authentication
Note: Please find step by step guide <<wiki>>

Note: For purpose of this exercise we will use an S-User keypair to simulate each partner from where I have extracted the certificate; more details can be found in the following link.

Navigate BTP Cockpit >> Subaccount >> Spaces >> Instances >> Click on Create >> Service Instance
Select options as shown below and type a descriptive instance name > Next
Select Grant-types as shown below, and use the default role >>Create

Create a Service Key from Service Instance.
Type a descriptive Service Key Name and from the certificate file provided by the partner, copy and paste the value to X.509 field >> Create

View Service Key
Copy and save “clientid” value:

“clientid”: “sb-cb4b8731-0dc9-44a4-bd21-16cdfaf35aaf!b17506|          !b2455”
Repeat same actions for Partner_B
Note: If you don’t have access to the SAP BTP cockpit, request these values from your BTP Admin.

Step II: Import public certificate from partner and assign aliases (Optional: Only if you would like to test without Partner Directory)

Note: For purpose of this exercise we will use an S-User keypair to simulate each partner from where I have extracted the certificate; more details can be found in the following link.

Navigate ➡️ Monitor >> Manage Security >> Keystore >> Click on Add >> Certificate

Partner_A

Assign an Alias: partner_a_813

Partner_B

Assign an Alias: partner_b_184

Result

Step 3: Configure Outbound JMS Adapter

In our scenario, we will like to send the message to a JMS queue, in a production scenario you might want to pick from that queue or route to a specific iFlow using Process Direct instead.

Queue Name: B2B_Partners
Transfer Exchange Properties: Checked

We are ready to deploy our iFlow

Step 4: Configure Partner Directory

Now we are ready to configure the partner directory but first, we need some fundamentals from the official documentation.

The Partner Directory allows you to store information about communication partners and to parameterize integration flows using this information. The Partner Directory helps you to set up a communication network between many communication partners efficiently. You use the Partner Directory to store partner-specific information. Those components that are parameterized read this information during runtime from the Partner Directory.

The Partner Directory contains the following entities(which can be accessed using an OData API)

The following are specific iFlow components available in Partner Directory:

AS2 sender adapter: sender partner X.509 certificate to verify partner signature, sender partner-specific user, or client certificate

The AS2 sender reads the following parameters from the Partner Directory:

Let’s digest the previous information: Partner Directory is used to store partner-specific information and access this information from the runtime. Partner Directory has predefined entities which can be leveraged to determine specific values for your partners, such as unique ID per partner, authorized users linked to the partner id, and a directory of parameters linked to the partner id. Additionally, the AS2 Sender Adapter has built-in Partner Directory capabilities.

We can now start the configuration of the Partner Directory.
Note: Please refer to the official documentation or personally recommended blog on how to execute crud operation using Postman.

 

  1. Create Partner ID in Partner Directory.
    We can create Pid or Partner ID by creating a String Parameter.


    URL: {{UI_tenant_url}}/api/v1/StringParameters
    Method: Post
    Body in Json:

    {
        "Pid":   "MATARTEST_ZZ",
        "Id":    "R-Co_08_850_4010",
        "Value": "abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyz000001"
    }

    Note: In my case, I have used a specific naming convention for my partner id which includes values from an X12 header document as part of my own strategy, this is optional, Partner ID can be any value that is unique for your directory. Example: Pid can be an ERP ID “100000099”, Id can be the endpoint address “URL-Address”, and Value can be the actual endpoint “https://acme-as2.com/inbound”

  2. Create an Authorized User in Partner Directory
    We linked the Pid to a user by creating an Authorized Users entity.
    URL: {{UI_tenant_url}}/api/v1/AuthorizedUsers
    Method: Post
    Body in JSON:

    {
      "Pid": "MATARTEST_ZZ",
      "User": "sb-cb4b8731-0dc9-44a4-bd21-16cdfaf35aaf!b17506|              !b2455"
    }​

    Pid value is the unique value representing your partner.
    User value should be retrieved from the service key linked to the partner certificate, this is the same value we retrieve from SAP BTP Cockpit.

  3. Create Partner Directory Parameters for AS2 Sender Adapter
    • Decrypt Message. This parameter is needed if partners are encrypting the message. We create a String Parameter for our Pid and assign Id: “AS2_inbound_decrypt_message” and the value: “true”

      URL: {{UI_tenant_url}}/api/v1/StringParameters
      Method: Post
      Body in Json:

      {
        "Pid":   "MATARTEST_ZZ",
        "Id":    "AS2_inbound_decrypt_message",
        "Value": "true"
      }​
    • Private Key Alias. This is the alias for the keypair which is used for decrypting the message. Recommended to use tenant’s keypair but any keypair already imported can be used. We create a String Parameter for our Pid and assign id: “ReceiverPrivateKey” and the value: “sap_cloudIntegrationcertificate”
      URL: {{UI_tenant_url}}/api/v1/StringParameters
      Method: Post
      Body in Json:

      {
        "Pid":   "MATARTEST_ZZ",
        "Id":    "ReceiverPrivateKey",
        "Value": "sap_cloudintegrationcertificate"
      }​
    • Verify Signature. This parameter is to set request the adapter to verify the signature. We create a String Parameter for our Pid and assign id: “AS2_inbound_verify_signature”  and assign the value: “trustedCertificate”
      URL: {{UI_tenant_url}}/api/v1/StringParameters
      Method: Post
      Body in Json:

      {
        "Pid":   "MATARTEST_ZZ",
        "Id":    "AS2_inbound_verify_signature",
        "Value": "trustedCertificate"
      }​
    • Public Key. This parameter contains the public certificate in PEM format, without header and footer, no spaces, or newlines. We create a Binary Parameter for our Pid and assign content-type: “crt” and value: “{{certificate_PEM}}”

      URL: {{UI_tenant_url}}/api/v1/BinaryParameters
      Method: Post
      Body in Json:

      {
          "Pid": "MATARTEST_ZZ",
          "Id": "SenderPublicKey",
          "ContentType": "crt",
          "Value": "MIIDkDCCAnigAwIBAgIOAO...VNxcW4SwvUHIbSg=="
      }

We have completed the configuration for Partner_A, please repeat all tasks for Partner_B. When finalized if all API calls have been executed successfully you will be able to have the following parameters configured in your tenant.
Note: I have used Pid: “MATARTEST_ZZ” ➡️ Partner_A and Pid: “MATARSYST_ZZ” ➡️ Partner_B

String Parameters:


AuthorizedUsers:

Binary Parameter:

Testing

To be able to test we need an AS2 tool to send documents to our iFlow, a good option is Mendelson also referenced by the official documentation unfortunately at the moment of writing this article Mendelson support has confirmed that Client Certificate Authentication is not working in the community version (forum) so instead we will use SAP BTP Trial – Cloud Integration.
Note: Please find a blog on how to enable a trial account <<blog>>

Step 1: Certificate Management

Cloud Integration Trial tenant will be acting as B2B Sender System for Partner_A and Partner_B so we need to maintain the proper security artifacts.

  1. Import Keypair in Cloud Integration Keystore.
    Navigate ➡️ Monitor >> Manage Security >> Keystore >> Click on Add >> Key Pair
    Partner_A >> alias >> partner_a_813
    Partner_B >> alias >> partner_b_184

Cloud Integration r-co tenant will be acting as B2B Receiver System so we need to maintain the public key from the sap_cloudintegrationcertificate Key Pair.

  1. Navigate ➡️ Monitor >> Manage Security >> Keystore >> Click on Add >> Certificate
    assign alias >> cpi_w

If imported successfully must have the following entries on the trial’s tenant keystore

Keypair:

Certificate:

Step 2: Create iFlow

  1. Create an iFlow with two Integration processes, two HTTPS Sender Adapter, two AS2 Receiver Adapter.
  2. Configure HTTPS Sender Adapter
    2.1 Create first endpoint as: /partner_a2.2 Create second endpoint as: /partner_b
    For simplicity will disable CSRF protected, and leave all default values.

Step 3: Configure Outbound AS2 (Receiver) Adapter

Note: Please refer to the Certificate section above for clarification on certificate usage.

Note: For purpose of this exercise we will use an S-User keypair to simulate each partner from where I have extracted the certificate; more details can be found in the following link.

  1. Configure AS2 Receiver Adapter – Partner_A
    • Connection – Client Certificate Authentication – Select Authentication Type as Client Certificate and type in the alias created >> partner_a_813
    • Processing – Own AS2 ID: “Partner_A“, Partner AS2 ID: R-Co, Message Subject: “msgB2BPartners“, and Content-Type Application/EDI-X12
    • Security – As defined Sign Message: Checked, Algorithm: SHA1, Private Key Alias: partner_a_813, Encrypt Message: Checked, Algorithm: 3DES, and Public Key Alias: cpi_w (sap_cloudintegrationcertificate)
    • MDN – Type: Sync, Request Signing: Checked, Algorithm: SHA1, Verify Signature: Checked, and Public Key Alias: cpi_w (sap_cloudintegrationcertificate)
  2. Configure AS2 Receiver Adapter – Partner_B
    • Connection – Client Certificate Authentication – Select Authentication Type as Client Certificate and type in the alias created >> partner_b_184
    • Processing – Own AS2 ID: “Partner_B“, Partner AS2 ID: R-Co, Message Subject: “msgB2BPartners“, and Content-Type Application/EDI-X12
    • Security – As defined Sign Message: Checked, Algorithm: SHA512, Private Key Alias: partner_b_184, Encrypt Message: Checked, Algorithm: AES256, and Public Key Alias: cpi_w (sap_cloudintegrationcertificate)
    • MDN – Type: Sync, Request Signing: Checked, Algorithm: SHA512, Verify Signature: Checked, and Public Key Alias: cpi_w (sap_cloudintegrationcertificate)
  3. Save and Deploy

    After successfully deploying we should have two endpoints, which will simulate sending data as Partner_A and Partner_B in compliance with the initial requirement and technical details.

Step 4: Complete E2E testing

We can test our scenario using a local client, I will use Postman to call the HTTPS endpoint and send a dummy EDI file. Note: Please find a video tutorial on how to create credentials and execute iFlow <<video>>

  1. Partner_A Test – X12 850
    Note: If successful reply will contain MDN details
  2. Partner_B Test – X12 855

Results

After execution, we can check the logs on both tenants.

Monitoring – Outbound (Trial tenant)

Navigate ➡️ Monitor >> Message Processing >> All Integrations Flows
Select Message for iFlow: IF_AS2_T
A successful message with a Synchronous MDN should have a status of processing completed successfully and MDN Attachment.

Outbound Message: Partner_A

MDN Attachment – Partner_A

Outbound Message – Partner_B

MDN Attachment – Partner_B

Same values as per Postman responses.

Monitoring – Inbound

Navigate ➡️ Monitor >> Message Processing >> All Integrations Flows
Select Message for iFlow: IF_AS2_Inbound_to_JMS

Inbound Message – Partner_A 

The Partner ID was retrieved automatically using Partner Directory Binary Parameter and AuthorizedUser entity.

Trace – Partner_A

Will deep dive into the header values to validate the user, certificate, and AS2 envelop values.

Header Values – Partner_A

Note: We can compare x-forwarded-client-cert and SAPAuthenticatedUserName values against the service key in SAP BTP Cockpit.

At last, we analyze if the data was decrypted.

Payload – Partner_A

Analyze decrypted payload

Inbound Message – Partner_B

The Partner ID was retrieved automatically using Partner Directory Binary Parameter and AuthorizedUser entity.

Trace – Partner_B

Will deep dive into the header values to validate the user, certificate, and AS2 envelop values.

Header Values – Partner_B

Note: We can compare x-forwarded-client-cert and SAPAuthenticatedUserName values against the service key in SAP BTP Cockpit.

At last, we analyze if the data was decrypted.

Payload – Partner_B

Analyze decrypted payload

 

Monitor Queue

Messages are available for further processing we can corroborate the Message-ID corresponds to the ones shown in the Message Monitor screen.

Conclusion

We have demonstrated that SAP Cloud Integration with the Partner Directory can dynamically select the correct certificates, and configuration to process the incoming data from different business partners. Thanks

My goal was to provide you with a guide on how to configure AS2 Adapters in SAP BTP Cloud Integration while leveraging Partner Directory built-in capabilities using client certificate authentication, hopefully, this can help you in your projects, keep integrating 🖖🏻

Regards

Assigned tags

      2 Comments
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      Author's profile photo Deepa Dhamodharan
      Deepa Dhamodharan

      Hello , Thank you for the wonderful blog . A quick question , We have a integration suite standard edition and we would like to use AS2 , do we still need to subscribe to Event mesh/Enterprise messaging?  It will be great if you can reply ? Did you use Enterprise Edition or standard edition of integration suite?

      Author's profile photo Ricardo Israel Mata Viejo
      Ricardo Israel Mata Viejo
      Blog Post Author

      Hi Deepa,

      If you have a new pricing model for Standard Edition the JMS queue functionality is already included without any cap.

      For the blog, I was using Premium Edition and Trial.

      Best regards