Airman able to access OWA from home

EIELSON AIR FORCE BASE, Alaska -- The pieces are finally in place to give Eielson users the ability to access their work e-mail accounts through Outlook Web Access via their common access card at home.

Although OWA has been around for some time, it has been inoperable since August 2006 due to the implementation of CAC-based authentication for network log-on. This has been a hot topic at the Air Force and PACAF levels as they worked with Microsoft to implement a CAC-enabled solution giving users back the ability to access e-mail, calendar and other Outlook resources from off-base locations.

With CAC-enabled OWA, personnel who are TDY or deployed will be able to access their Eielson e-mail account through the Internet from any computer with a CAC reader installed.

It also gives users the ability to access OWA from their home computers; however, a CAC reader and software must be installed. Squadron commanders will determine whether or not the squadron will provide unit-funded CAC readers to individuals.

If your unit does not fund a CAC reader for you, you can purchase one on your own. Your unit's client support administrators (CSAs) can provide web sites where you can purchase a CAC reader.

The ActiveCard Gold software required to operate the CAC reader is available free of charge to all DoD personnel for use on their home computers, and can be obtained through your unit's CSAs.

When it comes to AF networks, security versus convenience factors are always weighed heavily when it comes time for decision making. CAC-enabled OWA now returns some of the conveniences to the user while still maintaining an enhanced security posture on AF networks. The new OWA website is https://owa.eielson.af.mil/exchange.