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1   Introduction

This document covers core technologies and interactions between services, APIs, and applications interacting with the LSST Science Platform. The authentication use cases covered in this cover interactive users who are primarily interacting with the LSP in the following ways:

  • Logged into the notebook aspect
  • Logged into the portal aspect
  • From a local terminal, exercising the API aspect from third party libraries or applications

For the users in question, we make a few assumptions about use of the LSP in this context:

  • Users include LSST staff and scientists that are members of science collaborations.
  • Users already have an NCSA/LSST account through some mechanism. If they wish to use federated credentials, the assumption is that their federated credentials have been associated with their NCSA account.
  • Users are active, continuously or intermittently, over the course of an extended work day. Interactions will typically last several hours, though the system should be prepared for interactions lasting up to 24 hours.
  • At the start of an interaction with the LSP system, users do not know which types of data they will access. Users do know which services they will access.

2   Basic Concepts

We define users and groups within this document, as well as minimal requirements from the IAM system as needed by the LSP, and likely the broader Data Management System.

Note

Further definition of the IAM system will be available in the future in a change controlled document.

2.1   User

A user is minimally identified by either a UNIX ID number (UID) or a user name. A service MUST be able to lookup a UID if it has a user name, or a user name if it has a UID.

2.1.1   Real Accounts

A user account identifying a specific person is a real account. All LSST users in the US and Chilean DACs have an LSST account. An LSST account is also the same account as an NCSA UNIX (Kerberos) account.

2.1.2   Shared Accounts

A user account might actually be a shared account, which does not identify a specific person. A shared account must have at least one real account managing the shared account.

A shared account is nominally for the use and organization resources shared across real users, such as disk storage, database tables, and compute, if available.

2.1.2.1   Shared Account Use Cases

The primary use case of a shared account is for quota management attributing to a group. It also provides a logical namespace to which users can manage resources like database tables.

A shared account might be created for a few limited use cases. This might include:

  • Science Collaborations
  • Data Releases
  • Projects, such as Stack Club
  • Teams, such as Alerts, DAX, SQuaRE

2.2   Groups

A user is a member of one or more groups. All groups defined for a given user are owned exclusively by that user. All groups a user creates MUST follow the group naming conventions outlined by the LSST Chief Security Officer. A core set of groups do not belong to a specific user. These are defined and managed by the LSST system administrators.

The IAM system SHOULD disallow group names that are not representable as UNIX group names or database role names within the Data Management System. This implies a 32 character limit, as limited by Red Hat Linux.

Note

Before Oracle 12.2, there's a limit of 30 characters on role names.

All users MUST be a member and the only member of a user-private group. The group name should be the name of the user. This follows the Red Hat feature called User Private Groups.

Some systems, to which Groups may be synced to, may not allow assignment of permissions directly to users, only groups. If this is the case, then a user can assign permissions to the user private group. This would enable another user to extend access to a resource by assigning a read permission to the user's group, for example.

Group membership MUST be discoverable through at least an LDAP service provided by the IAM system. Additional services for querying group membership MAY be implemented.

2.2.1   User and Groups Synchronization

When necessary, the IAM system SHOULD create users and groups in underlying systems, synchronizing membership accordingly. The synchronization SHOULD finish in under an hour and MUST finish within 24 hours.

In databases, groups should be represented as roles.

The assignment of privileges on resources according to users and groups is out of scope for this document.

2.2.2   Caching Group Information

Clients querying a group membership service SHOULD cache results. Results SHOULD be cached with a TTL for no less than 30 seconds and no longer than 1 hour. A 5 minute TTL is recommended.

Users and services should be made aware of the caching TTL as well as potential latencies due to user and groups synchronization. It may take up to 2 hours for groups to be synchronized and caches invalidated.

If group information is encoded in a token, users MUST be informed to destroy the token through some form of logout mechanism. Single Logout is out of scope for this document.

2.2.3   Privacy and File Sharing

Note

This section is informational

Through the use of sticky bits, umasks, and user-private groups, it will be possible to build a system that can both preserve privacy, by setting sticky bits on user-private directories for the user's user-private group, as well as preserve access on directories that are intended to be shared, such as those owned by a Science Collaboration.

2.3   Roles

Note

This section is informational

There's currently no concept of roles in the existing IAM system for NCSA. A system that represents roles must also have permissions associated with roles. As such, Roles are generally out of scope for this document, but they are mentioned for informational purposes.

Roles often are implemented as group membership. For example, the portal web application may rely on having the groups lsst_int_portal_usdac_user, lsst_int_portal_pdac_user, and lsst_int_portal_admin defined. In this example, these groups are effectively roles. The portal application can limit what a user can do based on membership in these groups. The portal may also manage the roles in a user session context: a user may be allowed to be an admin by being a member of the admin group, but the user may assume the user role by default, with forced re-authentication being necessary to assume the admin role.

2.4   Authentication

Authentication in LSST is the act of associating a user with their LSST account.

Authentication by a real user is handled by the IAM system. All authentication for LSP services is handled through the OAuth 2.0 Protocol by the IAM system. Normally this will be through the OpenID Connect layer.

Note

Authentication for a shared account is out of scope for this document. It's assumed that users may be members of groups that are owned by shared accounts, but they will always authenticate as themselves. These details are subject to change.

Note

Authentication using means such as Kerberos is out of scope of this document.

2.4.1   identity.lsst.org - Account Management

All accounts can be managed through identity.lsst.org. This will include profile information about the user as well as group management. Users may need to interact with an LSST administrator in order to be granted the ability to create groups. This can be done by emailing lsst-account _at_ ncsa.illinois.edu (and CC lsst-sysadmins _at_ lsst.org).

2.4.2   Federated Identity and LSST Accounts

In order to improve security and convenience for users, users may associate eligible accounts with their LSST account, enabling them to delegate to third-party authenticators. This association is called Federated Identity, which allows the user to authenticate to LSST services using the associated accounts. CILogon is used to determine eligible authenticators for federated identity; the list typically includes accounts from the InCommon federation, as well as OAuth accounts from services such as Google and GitHub. Association of accounts from third party authenticators to the user's LSST account is configured through the identity.lsst.org account management portal. Once an account is associated, a user can login using credentials and authentication services from their associated accounts.

After a successful federated authentication from the associated account, the CILogon service MUST produce the equivalent authentication information to that of a successful authentication of an LSST account via the NCSA identity provider.

2.5   Authorization Methods

Authorization in LSST helps determine what acts a user may perform in a given system.

2.5.1   Service Access Authorization

LSP services MAY limit access by users at the service level. The IAM system MUST return service access capabilities in the form of claims in tokens for services.

In these cases, a service needs to acquire a list of groups associated with a user, either as claims in a token, or through a membership query to a service.

.. seealso:: `Data and Service Classifications <#data-and-service-classifications>`__

2.5.2   Data Access Authorization

Low-Level systems SHOULD be relied upon to authorize access to data. This includes:

  • Disk storage, such as NFS, GPFS;
  • Databases, such as Oracle or Qserv

2.5.3   Capabilities-based Authorization

Note

This section is informational

We expect some form of capabilities-based authorization will be useful for the Data Management System in the future. This section is an overview of capabilities-based authorization and requirements to implement such a system.

Capabilties-based security system is based on the object-capability security model.

A capabilities-based system, in the context of LSST DM system, would rely on:

  1. A definition of resources across the LSST DM system to which you can assign access rights to; such as dataset collections (butler repos), database tables, services.
  2. A reference to a resource or set of resources; such as a token, which the system can validate and enforce access control
  3. A definition of operations to be performed on the resource; such as read, write, and execute, for example.

Together, the reference and operation can be included in a message and will represent a capability. In order for the system to be secure, the message MUST be unforgeable. This is implemented through a cryptographic signature.

For the issuance of the capabilities, the following are required:

  • A method of determining the set of those capabilities for a given user or use case; and
  • A system which either implements that method, which issues the unforgeable message (a token or certificate); or
  • A system that is notified notified by another system implementing the method;
2.5.3.1   Authorization

Low-level systems, including disk storage (NFS, GPFS, S3/Swift/Ceph) and databases (Oracle, MySQL), do not have a way of enforcing capabilities-based authorizations. As such, to integrate a security system with capabilities, it's required to have a service in front of those systems which can process the messages.

To process a request with a capabilities message, a service MUST:

  1. Agree to the definition of resources issued in the message, mapping them to the system the system (or underlying system) manages
  2. Agree to the definition of operations in the message; mapping them to the operations the system (or underlying system) implements
  3. Examine the request and verify ALL resource and operation pairs a request may need are represented in the message.

For the LSP, we have not finished defining the resources of the message, though we expect those resources will correspond roughly to services; we expect operations will be either read, write, or execute in the context of LSP; and we expect a service will largely control access to itself, and, transitively, the data served by that service. The resources, operations, and services currently identified are in the data and service classifications section below.

2.6   Data and Service Classifications

Note

This section is informational

Warning

This section is subject to change

These classifications are loosely based on LPM-122 classifications, LDM-542, and LSE-163. Work is being performed to clarify the classifications of data and services together.

Resources Operations Allowable Risk Level Services
Image Access read medium Imgserv/SODA (Butler via POSIX), POSIX
Image Access (Metadata) read low SIA, TAP
Table Access (DR, Alerts) read medium TAP, QServ (Only through TAP)
Table Access (Transformed EFD) read low TAP, Consolidated (Notebook via SQL Client)
Table Access (User and Shared) read, write high TAP, Consolidated (Notebook via SQL Client)
User Query History read high TAP
File/Workspace Access read medium WebDAV, VOSpace, POSIX, Notebook (via POSIX)
File/Workspace Access (User/Shared) read, write high WebDAV, VOSpace, POSIX, Notebook (via POSIX)
Portal execute high Portal
Notebook execute high Notebook

From these data classifications, a set of capabilities has been defined. These capabilities are expressly checked for authorization to the respective services. When a user first logs in, we map a list of all possible capabilities a user may have by checking group membership for a given instance. We do this by constructing LDAP groups and adding users to that group. A group that is defined for this explicit purpose is called a capability group. Membership in a capability group determines the possible capabilities a user may have. For LSST deployments, we use NCSA identity management to control these groups, so we name them using NCSA namespace rules, which assign predefined prefixes. The suffix used for the LSST deployments is given here. Other deployments can name these groups however they wish and can assign multiple capabilities to the same group.

Resources Capabilities API Access Capability Group Suffix
Image Access read:image Yes img
Image Access (Metadata) read:image/md Yes img_md
Table Access (DR, Alerts) read:tap Yes tap
Table Access (Transformed EFD) read:tap/efd Yes tap_efd
Table Access (User and Shared) read:tap/user, write:tap/user Yes tap_usr
User Query History read:tap/history Yes tap_hist
File/Workspace Access read:workspace Yes ws
File/Workspace Access (User/Shared) read:workspace/user, write:workspace/user Yes ws_usr
Portal exec:portal No portal
Notebook exec:notebook No nb

3   Tokens

Broadly speaking, there are two main types of tokens in the LSST DM system. Tokens whose primary use is for identity, which are similar to those issued from CILogon, and tokens whose primary use is for checking capabilities. Identity tokens are roughly equivalent to X.509 certificates; they include information about the user identity, including the username for the LSST account and/or and group memberships, in addition to a cryptographic signature for verifying the token integrity using public key encryption. Because of these similarities, they can be used in nearly all use cases covered by X.509 certificates. But identity tokens also allow encoding of much more authentication information about a subject, which is useful in the LSST system. More information can be found about the differences between tokens and certificates in the Tokens vs. X .509 section.

Capability tokens, as expanded in the LSST DM system, will minimally also include the UNIX UID and/or username for the LSST account, as well as a list of capabilities for the token. Those capabilities are listed in the scope claim of the token.

3.1   Approaches to Authorization

Approach 1 is authorization primarily through identity. LSP services will rely on identity from identity tokens, including UID and group membership, to authorize access to services; services, notably the LSP API aspect, will implement impersonation in some form to delegate authorization to the underlying systems.

Approach 2 is the implementation of authorization first through capabilities at the service level; followed by the same identity-based authorization techniques from Approach 1. It is layered on top of Approach 1, and as a result, gradually implemented.

Approach 2, when initially implemented, will rely on JWT tokens in the form of SciTokens access tokens, with a long but bounded lifetime - 24 hours or more. When fully implemented, Approach 2 will also implement PKCE with long-lived refresh tokens and short lived access tokens. This can enable delegation to untrusted computing environments, such as the Grid — realizing a complete implementation of SciTokens.

Note

We do not anticipate taking a capability-only approach to authorization, with no identity provided at all. This differs slightly from the SciTokens approach, which prefers detailed, path-based capabilities and provides identity solely for informational purposes.

3.2   Identity tokens - OpenID Connect

All identity tokens are in the form of OpenID Connect tokens. All OpenID connect tokens are JWT tokens. They are issued from CILogon in the exchange. In Approach 1, we only use claims from tokens issued by CILogon. Tokens may be reissued by the token issuer to satisfy the token acceptance guarantee, but all claims are equal to the CILogon claims.

.. seealso:: `OpenID Connect Core Specification for ID
   Token <https://openid.net/specs/openid-connect-core-1_0.html#IDToken>`__

3.2.1   Identity Token Claims

Minimally, the identity tokens issued by CILogon MUST include the following claims.

uidNumber:The LSST UNIX UID.
isMemberOf:A list of JSON Objects with the objects composed of a name key corresponding to UNIX group names and id key corresponding to the UNIX GID for the group name.

3.3   Capability tokens - SciTokens

All capability tokens are based on SciTokens.

3.3.1   Claims

Minimally, the capability token issued by the token issuer MUST include the following claims:

uidNumber:The LSST UNIX UID.
scope:scope is the scope claim. In our implementation, this is a list of space-separated capabilities. Capabilities are derived from the data and service classifications. This is similar to how GitHub allows scopes.

3.4   Tokens vs. X.509

Fundamentally, identity tokens are roughly equivalent to X.509 certificates, though there are several advantages.

X.509 certificates are handled in Layer 4 in the OSI model, which typically leads to a more complicated setup of servers, clients, and applications.

OAuth tokens are handled in Layer 7 of the OSI model, which adds flexibility to configuration.

OAuth JWT tokens can include additional claims that are useful for application developers. OAuth Identity tokens can include arbitrary pieces of data, such as the UNIX UID, UNIX GIDs of the group membership, and additional data about an external identities used during login. They can be short lived, limited in scope, and thanks to OpenID Connect and the JWK spec, they do not require complex certificate handling.

Capabilities-based tokens allow issuance of tokens scoped accordingly to the services that a given application may require. A user may select only the capabilities needed for a given use case, limiting access to sensitive information, such as query history. This is most important in lower trust environments, such as grid computing or shared university clusters.

4   Components

4.1   Clients

4.1.1   Portal

When a user first logs into the portal, the token proxy will intercept the login and redirect them to CILogon. They may select either NCSA as their Identity Provider or an associated external federated identity. CILogon executes the login, ultimately returning information about who the user is at NCSA to the token proxy through CILogon's OpenID Connect interface as well as an identity token with the proper identity token claims. The token proxy, through the token issuer component, will then reissue the token with the same claims but with a 24-hour lifetime.

The portal will be passed that token in an HTTP request header. It can use the information in the token to customize its behavior. It passes that token in requests to the API aspect as an OAuth 2.0 Bearer token via the HTTP Authorization header, according to the OAuth 2.0 Specification:

Authorization: Bearer [TOKEN]
.. seealso:: `Passing OAuth 2.0 Tokens <#passing-oAuth-2.0-tokens>`__

4.1.2   Notebook

The portal and the notebook will share the same login flow, both being behind the token proxy. Once the login has progressed past the token proxy and to the notebook, the notebook will initiate a notebook session based on the token that it has received. The notebook can then make the token available in the user's notebook environment.

A user logged in to the notebook aspect can be viewed as a special case of data access libraries, where we can inject tokens into the user's local environment. For software developed by LSST that utilizes the LSP API aspect services, we will ensure those applications can be automatically configured based on those tokens. Other third party software may be able to be similarly automatically configured; otherwise they will be configurable in the same way as if a user was running on their local machine and not in an LSP instance.

4.1.3   TOPCAT

LSST will be working with the TOPCAT developers to find the best method of authentication. It's expected that the embedded HTTP basic method will work to start, based on the HTTP Basic scheme for OAuth. Once Approach 2 is fully implemented, it may be desirable to switch to the PKCE flow with refresh tokens.

4.1.4   Data access libraries

We are targeting Astroquery and PyVO as primary libraries to be used within the Notebook environment. PyVO doesn't currently implement any form of authentication, though we've prototyped and tested a few strategies for adding it.

Within the Notebook aspect, tokens MUST be available, either in a well-defined environment variable or as a file in a well-defined location.

4.2   Token Manager

In both approaches, it's desirable for clients to auto-configure, if possible, based on the tokens they have available in their environment. Tokens may be issued manually through a token download interface, or they may be issued as part of an OAuth2 PKCE flow when Approach 2 is fully implemented.

4.3   Token Issuer

The token issuer component is fundamentally a part of the IAM system. The token issuer's primary purpose is to issue tokens with appropriate capabilities, based on a combination of information from LDAP and user-selected scopes.

The token issuer component is theoretically not needed for Approach 1, but due to complexities in implementation and integration with the notebook environment, it's desired for simplification.

The token issuer will handle several use cases:

  1. Token reissuance of identity tokens from Approach 1.
  2. Token reissuance to satisfy the token acceptance guarantee
  3. Token issuance, by way of the token download interface, of capability tokens from Approach 2.

4. Token issuance, by way of PKCE flow, of refresh tokens and capability tokens from Approach 2. With the PKCE flow, the refresh token can be presented at any time to the token issuer to issue a short-lived capability token.

The token issuer implements a token download interface. Minimally, the token download interface allows a user to select the capabilities a token should be configured with and to download the token.

4.4   Token Authorization

For both approaches, we use a common token authorizer component which validates the tokens.

For Approach 1, the token proxy is responsible for inspecting the token for any groups of interest, or delegating to a service, to control access to the service.

In Approach 2, services in the LSP API aspect rely on capabilities in the scope claim of the capability token to limit access to the requisite service. A service may then rely on impersonation for finer-grained authorization.

In both approaches, services in the LSP API aspect may also be responsible for inspecting the token for groups of interest or capabilities, but the token could be assumed to be validated.

4.5   Token Proxy

The Token Proxy is a single gateway to which can handle OAuth2 authentication flows, and integrate with the token authorization and token issuer components. Critically, through the token issuer, the token proxy implements transparent token reissuance for downstream services.

The reissued token MAY alter the values of the following iss, exp, and iat claims. All other claims MUST be included in the reissued token, unmodified. Additional claims may also be included.

When reissuing tokens, the token proxy MUST make those tokens available to the downstream services via HTTP headers:

  • X-Auth-Request-Token: [token]
  • Authorization: Bearer [token]

Additional information about the user may also be relayed to the services from the token proxy, such as the preferred identity email, LSST username, and LSST UNIX UID:

  • X-Auth-Request-Email: [email]
  • X-Auth-Request-User: [username]
  • X-Auth-Request-Uid: [uid]

Note

Downstream services may need to rely on some form of header renaming if the service is unable to accept the default headers. This is usually accomplished via reverse proxy configuration.

5   Sequence Diagrams

5.1   Approach 1 - Identity Tokens

5.1.1   Notebook with Identity Tokens

/_static/Authentication_to_Notebook_with_CILogon_OAuth_flow_OpenID_Connect.png

5.1.2   Portal with Identity Tokens

/_static/Authentication_for_Portal_with_data_request_using_CILogon_and_OpenID_Connect.png

5.1.3   Application with Identity Tokens

/_static/Authentication_for_Application_with_data_request_using_CILogon_and_OpenID_Connect.png

5.2   Approach 2 - Capability Tokens

5.2.1   Notebook with Capability Token

/_static/Authentication_to_Notebook_with_CILogon_OAuth_flow_and_Capability_token.png

5.2.2   Portal with Capability Token

/_static/Authentication_to_Portal_with_data_request_using_capability_token.png

5.2.3   Application with Capability Token

/_static/Authentication_for_Application_with_data_request_using_capability_token.png

6   Appendix

  • InCommon and eduPerson to verify attributes about scientists, when possible;
  • CILogon to federate those identities and implement the return of identity data about users in the form of claims.
  • OAuth 2.0 as the generic protocol to interface with CILogon. OpenID Connect is layered over the OAuth 2.0 protocol to enable an authentication implementation.
  • OpenID Connect as the simple authentication layer on top of OAuth 2.0.
  • JWT as the implementation for identity tokens. This is also required as a result of using OpenID Connect.

6.1   InCommon Federation

InCommon is an identity federation in the United States that provides a common framework for identity management and trust across member institutions. The InCommon Federation's identity management is built on top of eduPerson attributes. The interface used to interact with the federated institutions is Shibboleth.

6.2   OAuth 2.0

OAuth2 is a framework that enables users to authorize applications to retrieve information, either in the form of a token or through the use of a token, about the user from an identity provider. An identity provider may be Google, GitHub, or an institution. Typically, institutions themselves do not implement OAuth 2.0 interfaces, but they do implement interfaces with Shibboleth and SAML.

OAuth 2.0 specifies how you may ask for information about a user. It also specifies a method, through tokens, which a service may use to request and validate information about the user. OAuth 2.0 has several application flows that may be chosen based on the application at hand and desired security requirements.

6.2.1   Passing OAuth 2.0 Tokens

According to the OAuth 2.0 protocol, all tokens are transferred via the Authorization Header:

Authorization: Bearer [TOKEN]

This is the default, standard, and recommended way of passing ALL OAuth 2.0 tokens, whether it's an OpenID Connect Identity token or a SciToken.

In some cases, existing clients of LSP services may exist that may not allow a user to send an arbitrary authorization header, or would need code to do so. Clients that support authorization can often be configured to provide an interface for HTTP Basic Authorization.

For compatibility with such systems, some services in the LSP, most importantly the WebDAV service, MAY accept tokens in the Authorization header according to the HTTP Basic scheme, where the token is the username and the password is x-oauth-basic or empty, or vice versa.

.. seealso:: https://tools.ietf.org/html/rfc7617#section-2
.. seealso:: https://github.blog/2012-09-21-easier-builds-and-deployments-using-git-over-https-and-oauth/

For clients which do not allow specifying a username and a password directly, additional compatibility may be possible by manually constructing the URL with the token in it:

https://<token>:x-oauth-basic@lsp.lsst.org/api

Warning

Care should be taken to always make the URL https, so tokens aren't passed incorrectly.

6.3   OpenID Connect

OpenID Connect is a simple authentication layer on top of OAuth2. OpenID Connect specifies a small set of information about a user which may be used to authenticate a user using claims implemented according to the OAuth 2.0 specification.

6.4   CILogon

CILogon is a generic authentication proxy/clearing house for authentication providers from multiple services or institutions, especially institutions federated into the InCommon federation, as well as other services such as GitHub and Google. CILogon serves as a common endpoint for these various identity providers and translates their authentication mechanisms (OAuth 2.0, Shibboleth, OpenID Connect) to a common authentication mechanism while also translating claims when possible.

CILogon translates authentication information and user claims into OpenID Connect claims, layered on the OAuth 2.0 protocol. Using this, we typically know what institution a user is from, their email address, and whether or not they are faculty, staff, or a student. We may use this information to also map them to an NCSA user, provided that information has been previously captured, and potentially retrieve additional claims about that user, such as the groups they are a member of. Should we want additional claims beyond the subject of a token — claims such as group membership or capabilities — we will need to deploy a server to which we can present a refresh token that will provide us with those additional claims. We do not expect this implementation-specific server needs to be included in CILogon.

6.5   JWT

A JSON Web Token (JWT) is a way of representing claims as JSON, as well as information for validating those claims through the use of signatures (JWS) in the token, and a means of validating those signatures (JWE/JWK) — all in the same token. Included in the JWT specification is also a way of encoding a token using Base64 in a way that's friendly for the web.

For all LSST applications, we use RSA256, an asymmetric algorithm, to sign the tokens.

We rely on tokens generated by CILogon to authenticate users in the browser. CILogon always returns an OpenID Connect JWT token.

A whitelist of token issuers we trust MUST be maintained, which includes CILogon and the token issuer for a given instance. Public keys used to validate tokens must be available from all token issuers, following the JWK specification. Applications should cache the JWK for a given token issuer for at least 5 minutes and not more than 1 hour.

All Access Tokens are based on JWT. Some access tokens may also include claims implemented according to the SciTokens specification.

.. seealso:: https://tools.ietf.org/html/rfc7519

6.6   PKCE

Proof Key for Code Exchange (PKCE) is an extension to the Authorization Code flow for OAuth 2.0. Primarily, it doesn't require a secret OAuth 2.0 client_id, making it suitable for native applications, which are effectively public OAuth 2.0 clients.

6.7   SciTokens

SciTokens is an implementation of capabilities-based authorizations built as specific claims inside a JWT token. Those claims are modeled as lists of capabilities organized as colon-separated pairs of operations, such as read, write, or execute, with arbitrary named resources. A named resource may be a file path (e.g. read:/datasets/catalogs) or a more general resource (e.g. read:mysql://server:3806/schema)

SciTokens recommends not using the subject (sub claim) for identity purposes. This implies that SciTokens should not be used for authorizations based on identity.

SciTokens MUST be passed using one of the allowable methods defined for passing OAuth 2.0 Tokens.

A SciToken MUST come with a scope claim. The scope claim is a space-separated list of capabilities. This is defined in RFC6749.

In accordance with the principle of least-privilege, a SciTokens issuer SHOULD also allow a user to attenuate or remove those capabilities with successive calls to the SciTokens issuer, trading an existing token for a more-attenuated one. This may be especially useful with Grid computing, for example. It's important to consider the lifetime of a token in these scenarios to determine what token may be required.

6.8   Token lifetimes

Access token lifetimes are expected to be short, typically on the order of several hours or less, but may last as long as 24 hours, depending on the issuer and use case.

Refresh tokens, which are used to acquire access tokens in the OAuth 2.0 protocol, can last longer than those access tokens. It's expected a refresh token will last at least 24 hours and may in some cases last a week or longer.

6.8.1   Token Acceptance Guarantee

The token proxy guarantees that the tokens that it issues to other Aspects will actually be usable when given to the API service. In order to guarantee this, the token proxy MUST issue a new token, with the same claims, during initial login. The lifetime of this token cannot exceed the lifetime of the refresh token received from CILogon, which is set at 24 hours.

Note

This implies the maximum length for an authenticated login session for the LSP, in the browser, is also set at 24 hours.

The token proxy also guarantees that the tokens will be usable for the duration of a serviced API request. To accomplish this, the token proxy MUST issue a new token for every serviced API request, with only the API aspect as the intended audience. The lifetime of this token is the upper bound for the limit of time it takes to service an API request, set at 24 hours.

The LSP API aspect services SHOULD NOT reissue new tokens reissued from previously serviced API requests.

Note

Safe HTTP methods, such as HEAD and GET requests SHOULD NOT need reissuance, as they SHOULD NOT take any other action other than simple retrieval.

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