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Hawk authentication support for Kinto

travis Coverage

Kinto-hawk enables Hawk authentication for Kinto based applications.

It adds the Hawk authentication protocol to the Kinto Accounts plugins.

Your users are handled the same way as usual Kinto Accounts Users.

The main benefit of Hawk for Kinto is to prevent replay attacks (very useful for score games) and to prevent sending the user and password over the network like with Basic auth.

It provides:

  • An authentication policy class;
  • Integration with Kinto cache backend for token verifications;
  • Some optional endpoints to perform to grab a new Hawk session.
  • Kinto documentation
  • Issue tracker


Install the Python package:

pip install kinto-hawk

Include the package in the project configuration:

# Enable plugin.
kinto.includes = kinto_hawk

And configure authentication policy using pyramid_multiauth formalism:

multiauth.policies = account

# Enable Hawk authenticated policy and name it account
multiauth.policy.account.use = kinto_hawk.authentication.HawkAuthenticationPolicy

By default, it will rely on the cache configured in Kinto.


As of today, there are no specific configuration for Hawk.

If necessary, override default values for authentication policy:

# multiauth.policy.account.realm = Realm
# hawk.nonce_ttl_seconds = 60  # A minute
# hawk.session_ttl_seconds = 2613600  # 2 months since last usage.

How to create a user?

You can use the kinto create-user command to create a user:

kinto create-user --ini config/kinto.ini -u admin

Login flow

Once you have a user and you have activated the kinto-hawk plugin, you will be able to request an Hawk Session from a new endpoint using Basic Auth or a previous Hawk Session.


This will only work with an account user. You cannot request an Hawk Session for an OAuth authenticated user for instance.

$ http POST -v --auth (userID):(password)
POST /v1/hawk-sessions HTTP/1.1

HTTP/1.1 201 Created Hawk-Session-Token: 47d5616e561443e79d0db605771db46234a984629a6e681059b76657f790583b