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JavaScript App Security: Auth and Identity on the Client

JavaScript App Security: Auth and Identity on the Client

The story is always the same; if you want to create a JavaScript centric app with API and identity security, you’re told that you need to have a server-side component for handling your identity and application security. That’s simply not the case in modern development.

In this session we'll look at client-side identity, API, and token security, exploring token downscoping methodologies, key management tools, and security on the client.

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Jonathan LeBlanc

March 15, 2019
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Transcript

  1. JavaScript App Security: Auth and Identity on the Client Jonathan

    LeBlanc Director of Developer Advocacy @ Box Email: jleblanc@box.com
  2. What are the issues on the client? Front-end JavaScript code

    should be treated as a completely insecure environment when making privileged API requests Jonathan LeBlanc • Director of Developer Advocacy @ Box • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com
  3. Agenda for Today Browser and Data: Working with browser security

    and identifying sensitive data. API Communication Hurdles: Services and standards for handling auth and identity. Improving Token Security: How to work with tokens linked to highly secure information. Jonathan LeBlanc • Director of Developer Advocacy @ Box • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com
  4. Part 1: Browser and Data

  5. 1 What data should be secured? Jonathan LeBlanc • Director

    of Developer Advocacy @ Box • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com Application Keys (app identity) Public / private keys, application access keys, or any other app authentication keys. Access Tokens (app access) Generated access tokens, pre-authorized access tokens, or any other string that grants privileged access to resources. Sensitive Information Any sensitive non-anonymized, unencrypted, information that can be attributed back to a user.
  6. What are the issues on the client? The browser security

    model restricts API requests to the same domain, subdomain, and port as the originating request. Jonathan LeBlanc • Director of Developer Advocacy @ Box • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com 1 What problem do we need to solve?
  7. What are the issues on the client? Jonathan LeBlanc •

    Director of Developer Advocacy @ Box • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com 1 The technology we’re looking at CORS (Cross Origin Resource Sharing) Allows a web app running at one origin to access resources from another origin by using additional HTTP headers. https:/ /www.w3.org/TR/cors/
  8. OPTIONS /cors HTTP/1.1 Origin: http://mysite.com Access-Control-Request-Method: POST Access-Control-Request-Headers: Authorization Host:

    api.service.com Accept-Language: en-US Connection: keep-alive User-Agent: Mozilla/5.0... Example CORS Preflight Request
  9. Access-Control-Allow-Origin: http://mysite.com Access-Control-Allow-Methods: GET, POST, OPTIONS Access-Control-Allow-Headers: Authorization, Content-Type Content-Type:

    text/html; charset=utf-8 Example CORS Preflight Response
  10. Part 2: API Communication Hurdles

  11. 2 Authentication versus Authorization Jonathan LeBlanc • Director of Developer

    Advocacy @ Box • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com Authentication Services, specifications, or processes that are used to identify a user or an application. Authorization Processes that are used to grant an application permission to make requests on behalf of the user or application.
  12. What are the issues on the client? When making API

    requests, most services require that you are authorized to make those requests, either as the application or the user. Jonathan LeBlanc • Director of Developer Advocacy @ Box • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com 2 What problem do we need to solve?
  13. 2 The technology we’re looking at Jonathan LeBlanc • Director

    of Developer Advocacy @ Box • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com CORS As previously discussed, this will allow us to make HTTP requests to the required API service at another origin. OAuth 2 OAuth 2 is the open authorization system that may be used to make authorized requests to the API service.
  14. What are the issues on the client? Jonathan LeBlanc •

    Director of Developer Advocacy @ Box • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com 2 How the standard OAuth 2 flow works Client Application OAuth Service / Resource Owner 1. Client app redirects user to log in / authorization 2. OAuth Service sends authorization grant 3. Client POST request to fetch access token 4. OAuth service validates and sends access token 5. Client makes requests for privileged resources
  15. What are the issues on the client? Jonathan LeBlanc •

    Director of Developer Advocacy @ Box • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com 2 How the OAuth 2 implicit grant flow works Client Application OAuth Service / Resource Owner 1. Client app redirects user to log in / authorization 2. OAuth Service validates client app and responds with access token in query string 3. Client makes requests for privileged resources
  16. https://www.myapp.com/callback #access_token=T9cE5asGnuyYCCqIZFoWjFHvNbvVqHjl &refresh_token=J7rxTiWdOHbUnsUfGMinKBDLZWP9BgR &expires_in=7200 &state=mystate Example of a returned token

    is the OAuth 2 implicit grant flow
  17. What are the issues on the client? The standard 3-legged

    auth process means that you have to log in to the API service. How can I use my existing identity system to use the service behind the scenes? Jonathan LeBlanc • Director of Developer Advocacy @ Box • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com 2 What problem do we need to solve?
  18. 2 The technology we’re looking at Jonathan LeBlanc • Director

    of Developer Advocacy @ Box • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com OAuth 2 OAuth 2 is the open authorization system that may be used to make authenticated requests to the API service. JWT JSON Web Tokens provides a mechanism for including an existing identify system to bypass the OAuth 3rd leg.
  19. What are the issues on the client? Jonathan LeBlanc •

    Director of Developer Advocacy @ Box • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com 2 Which part of the flow does JWT target? Client Application OAuth Service / Resource Owner 1. Client app redirects user to log in / authorization 2. OAuth Service validates client app and responds with access token in querystring 3. Client makes requests for privileged resources
  20. 2 What are the components of a JWT request? Jonathan

    LeBlanc • Director of Developer Advocacy @ Box • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com X (Header): Token type and hashing algorithm Y (Payload): User / verification content Z (Signature): Header, payload, and secret XXXXXXXX.YYYYYYYY.ZZZZZZZZ
  21. 2 The components of a JWT header Jonathan LeBlanc •

    Director of Developer Advocacy @ Box • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com alg: The hashing algorithm to be used (RSA / HMAC). typ: The token type, always JWT.
  22. 2 The components of a JWT payload Jonathan LeBlanc •

    Director of Developer Advocacy @ Box • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com iss (issuer): The person that issued the token. sub (subject) : The subject of the token. aud (audience) : Audience the token is intended for. exp (expiration time) : Expiration time of the token. nbf (not before) : Starting time token is available. iat (issued at) : When the token was issued. jti (JWT ID) : Unique identifier for the token.
  23. 2 The components of a JWT Signature Jonathan LeBlanc •

    Director of Developer Advocacy @ Box • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com Encoded Data: Base64 encoded header + payload. Secret: A private key.
  24. const header = { alg: HMAC', typ: 'JWT' }; const

    payload = { sub: '4355676', exp: '1481160294', jti: '841112’ }; HMACSHA256( base64UrlEncode(header) + "." + base64UrlEncode(payload), secret) Sample JWT Request Segments
  25. 2 Securing JWT / OAuth 2 Communication Jonathan LeBlanc •

    Director of Developer Advocacy @ Box • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com Web App Doesn’t hold persistent token, simply assumes a token is available Identity Provider Service like Auth0 to manage secure identity / token procurement from the API service Serverless Function Serverless API gateway function with code to procure tokens (e.g. Webtask, AWS Lambda) API Service Service that provides endpoints for data which the web app would like to consume
  26. Part 3: Improving Token Security

  27. What are the issues on the client? When using an

    access token within frontend code, you are exposing a potentially long lived keys with extensive data access permissions. Jonathan LeBlanc • Director of Developer Advocacy @ Box • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com 3 What problem do we need to solve?
  28. What are the issues on the client? Jonathan LeBlanc •

    Director of Developer Advocacy @ Box • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com Token Downscoping The ability to programmatically generate a highly restricted child token with the intent of minimizing information exposure in insecure code / environments. 3 The technology we’re looking at
  29. What are the issues on the client? Jonathan LeBlanc •

    Director of Developer Advocacy @ Box • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com 3 Token downscoping process Fully Scoped Token Standard OAuth 2 token that is fully scoped with the application and user permissions Downscoped Token New child token that is tightly restricted for read / write access and permissions. Client-side Code Downscoped token is deployed to client-side code, mobile, or UI to make HTTP requests.
  30. 3 Jonathan LeBlanc • Director of Developer Advocacy @ Box

    • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com Tightly scoped for single file: A token should only be scoped for the item needed for processing, such as a file. Short lived: Downscoped tokens should only live for their natural useful time (e.g. 1 hour) and should not be refreshable. Revocable: Downscoped tokens may be revoked before natural expiration through the API. Split read / write functions: To further scope token exposure, separate read / write tokens can be issued. Least privilege principle for downscoped tokens
  31. What are the issues on the client? Jonathan LeBlanc •

    Director of Developer Advocacy @ Box • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com 3 Downscoped Token Components New Scopes • Preview item • Download item • Share item New Access Rights • Read access to file id 1234567 • Token revokes in 1hr Fully Scoped, Long Lived Token • Read / write all files / folders • Manage all users • Create webhooks • Manage enterprise settings
  32. client.exchangeToken(“item_preview, item_share, item_download”) .then((tokenInfo) => { // token available in

    tokenInfo.accessToken }).catch((err) => { console.error(err); }); Downscoping a Token Example
  33. Topic Recap Browser and Data: How do we communicate from

    JS and what data should we protect. API Communication Hurdles: Tech to handle authentication / authorization / key management. Improving Token Security: Taking long lived tokens from the API service and scoping down based on least privilege principle. Jonathan LeBlanc • Director of Developer Advocacy @ Box • Twitter: @jcleblanc • Email: jleblanc@box.com
  34. Thank You https:/ /speakerdeck.com/jcleblanc Jonathan LeBlanc Director of Developer Advocacy

    @ Box Email: jleblanc@box.com