Skip navigation

Duo Single Sign-On for Meraki Secure Client

Last Updated: August 9th, 2023

Add two-factor authentication and flexible security policies to Meraki Secure Client SAML 2.0 logins with Duo Single-Sign On. Our cloud-hosted SSO identity provider offers inline user enrollment, self-service device management, and support for a variety of authentication methods — such as passkeys and security keys, Duo Push, or Verified Duo Push — in the Universal Prompt.


As business applications move from on-premises to cloud hosted solutions, users experience password fatigue due to disparate logons for different applications. Single sign-on (SSO) technologies seek to unify identities across systems and reduce the number of different credentials a user has to remember or input to gain access to resources.

While SSO is convenient for users, it presents new security challenges. If a user's primary password is compromised, attackers may be able to gain access to multiple resources. In addition, as sensitive information makes its way to cloud-hosted services it is even more important to secure access by implementing two-factor authentication and zero-trust policies.

About Duo Single Sign-On

Duo Single Sign-On is our cloud-hosted SSO product which layers Duo's strong authentication and flexible policy engine on top of Meraki Secure Client logins. Duo Single Sign-On acts as an identity provider (IdP), authenticating your users using existing on-premises Active Directory (AD) or another SSO IdP. Duo SSO prompts users for two-factor authentication and performs endpoint assessment and verification before permitting access to Meraki Secure Client.

Duo Single Sign-On is available in Duo Premier, Duo Advantage, and Duo Essentials plans, which also include the ability to define policies that enforce unique controls for each individual SSO application. For example, you can require that Salesforce users complete two-factor authentication at every login, but only once every seven days when accessing Meraki Secure Client. Duo checks the user, device, and network against an application's policy before allowing access to the application.

Configure Single Sign-On

Before configuring Meraki Secure Client with Duo SSO using Security Assertion Markup Language (SAML) 2.0 authentication you'll first need to enable Duo Single Sign-On for your Duo account and configure a working authentication source.

Once you have your SSO authentication source working, continue to the next step of creating the Meraki Secure Client application in Duo.

Create the Meraki Secure Client Application in Duo

  1. Log on to the Duo Admin Panel and navigate to Applications.

  2. Click Protect an Application and locate the entry for Meraki Secure Client with a protection type of "2FA with SSO hosted by Duo (Single Sign-On)" in the applications list. Click Protect to the far-right to start configuring Meraki Secure Client. See Protecting Applications for more information about protecting applications in Duo and additional application options. You'll need the information on the Meraki Secure Client page under Downloads later.

  3. Meraki Secure Client uses the Mail attribute when authenticating. We've mapped the bridge attribute to Duo Single Sign-On supported authentication source attribute as follows:

    Bridge Attribute Active Directory SAML IdP
    <Email Address> mail Email

    If you are using non-standard attributes for your authentication source, check the Custom attributes box and enter the name of the attributes you wish to use instead.

    Custom Attributes Checkbox for Meraki Secure Client
  4. You can adjust additional settings for your new SAML application at this time — like changing the application's name from the default value, enabling self-service, or assigning a group policy.

  5. Keep the Duo Admin Panel open. You will come back to it later.

Duo Universal Prompt

The new Universal Prompt provides a simplified and accessible Duo login experience for web-based applications, offering a redesigned visual interface with security and usability enhancements.

Universal Prompt Traditional Prompt
 Duo Push in Universal Prompt  Duo Push in Traditional Prompt

We've already updated the Duo Meraki Secure Client application hosted in Duo's service to support the Universal Prompt, so there's no action required on your part to update the application itself. You can activate the Universal Prompt experience for users of new and existing Duo Meraki Secure Client applications from the Duo Admin Panel.

Before you activate the Universal Prompt for your application, it's a good idea to read the Universal Prompt Update Guide for more information about the update process and the new login experience for users.

Activate Universal Prompt

Activation of the Universal Prompt is a per-application change. Activating it for one application does not change the login experience for your other Duo applications.

The "Universal Prompt" area of the application details page shows that this application is "New Prompt Ready", with these activation control options:

  • Show traditional prompt: (Default) Your users experience Duo's traditional prompt via redirect when logging in to this application.
  • Show new Universal Prompt: Your users experience the Universal Prompt via redirect when logging in to this application.

Universal Prompt Info - Application Ready for Universal Prompt

Enable the Universal Prompt experience by selecting Show new Universal Prompt, and then scrolling to the bottom of the page to click Save.

Once you activate the Universal Prompt, the application's Universal Prompt status shows "Update Complete" here and on the Universal Prompt Update Progress report.

Universal Prompt Info - Universal Prompt Activation Complete

Should you ever want to roll back to the traditional prompt, you can return to this setting and change it back to Show traditional prompt. However, this will still deliver the Duo prompt via redirect, not in an iframe.

Universal Update Progress

Click the See Update Progress link to view the Universal Prompt Update Progress report. This report shows the update availability and migration progress for all your Duo applications in-scope for Universal Prompt support. You can also activate the new prompt experience for multiple supported applications from the report page instead of visiting the individual details pages for each application.

Enable Meraki Secure Client for SSO

Add Duo Single Sign-On as a new single sign-on provider in Meraki Secure Client.

  1. Contact Meraki Support to have SAML authentication enabled for your MX. Do not continue until this feature is on.

  2. Open a new tab in your browser and log on to your Meraki Secure Client account.

  3. In the menu on the left, hover over Security & SD-WAN and click Client VPN.

  4. Click the AnyConnect Settings tab. Make sure Enabled is selected next to "Anyconnect Client VPN".

  5. Under "Client Connection Details", copy the Hostname URL.

  6. Under "Authentication and Access", type https:// into the AnyConnect Server URL field and then paste the hostname URL.


  7. Under "Client Connection Details", check the AnyConnect Port number. If the port number is different than 443, go to step 8. If the port number is 443, skip to step 9.

  8. Copy the AnyConnect Port number. Scroll down to the AnyConnect Server URL and type a : (colon) at the end of the URL. Paste the port number after the : (colon).


  9. Copy the AnyConnect Server URL.

  10. Return to the Duo Admin Panel and paste the AnyConnect Server URL into the AnyConnect Server URL field.

  11. In the Duo Admin Panel, click Download XML to download the SAML Metadata XML file.

AnyConnect Server URL from Meraki Secure Client
  1. Scroll to the bottom of the Duo Admin Panel and click Save.

  2. Return to the Meraki Secure Client page. Under "Authentication and Access", click Choose File and upload the SAML metadata XML file.

SAML Metadata File Uploaded to Meraki
  1. Scroll to the bottom of the page and click Save Changes.

Learn more about Meraki Secure Client SSO at Cisco Meraki Documentation.

Using SSO

You can log on to Meraki Secure Client by navigating to your Meraki Secure Client SSO page e.g., Enter your password and click Log In to be redirected to Duo Single Sign-On to begin authentication.

Active Directory Login

With Active Directory as the Duo SSO authentication source, enter the primary username (email address) on the Duo SSO login page and click or tap Next.

Duo Single Sign-On Login

Enter the AD primary password and click or tap Log in to continue.

Duo Single Sign-On Password

SAML Login

With another SAML identity provider as the Duo SSO authentication source, Duo SSO immediately redirects the login attempt to that SAML IdP for primary authentication. Users do not see the Duo SSO primary login screen.

Duo Authentication

Successful verification of your primary credentials by Active Directory or a SAML IdP redirects back to Duo. Complete Duo two-factor authentication when prompted and then you'll return to Meraki Secure Client to complete the login process.

Duo Universal Prompt

* Universal Prompt experience shown.

Cisco AnyConnect mobile or desktop apps require version 4.6 or higher. On the Meraki Secure Client page, copy the AnyConnect Server URL and paste it into your AnyConnect client and click Login. You will be redirected to authenticate to Duo Single Sign-On.

Meraki Secure Client supports SP-initiated authentication only, meaning that you must start your SSO login from that application's sign-in page. You won't be able to add Meraki Secure Client as an application tile in Duo Central for IdP-initiated logins.

Congratulations! Your Meraki Secure Client users now authenticate using Duo Single Sign-On.

See the full user login experience, including expired password reset (available for Active Directory authentication sources in the Duo End User Guide for SSO.

Enable Remembered Devices

To minimize additional Duo two-factor prompts when switching between Meraki Secure Client and your other Duo Single Sign-On SAML applications, be sure to apply a shared "Remembered Devices" policy to your SAML applications.


Need some help? Try searching our Knowledge Base articles or Community discussions. For further assistance, contact Support.