This package contains utilities that can help protect parts of Plone or applications build on top of the Plone framework.
1. Restricting to HTTP POST
a) Using decorator
If you only need to allow HTTP POST requests you can use the PostOnly checker:
from plone.protect import PostOnly from plone.protect import protect @protect(PostOnly) def manage_doSomething(self, param, REQUEST=None): pass
This checker operates only on HTTP requests; other types of requests are not checked.
b) Passing request to a function validator
from plone.protect import PostOnly ... PostOnly(self.context.REQUEST) ...
2. Form authentication (CSRF)
A common problem in web applications is Cross Site Request Forgery or CSRF. This is an attack method in which an attacker tricks a browser to do a HTTP form submit to another site. To do this the attacker needs to know the exact form parameters. Form authentication is a method to make it impossible for an attacker to predict those parameters by adding an extra authenticator which can be verified.
Generating the token
To use the form authenticator you first need to insert it into your form. This can be done using a simple TAL statement inside your form:
<span tal:replace="structure context/@@authenticator/authenticator"/>
this will produce a HTML input element with the authentication information.
If you want to create the token value programmatically, use the following:
from plone.protect.authenticator import createToken token = createToken()
Validating the token
a) Zope Component Architecture way
Next you need to add logic somewhere to verify the authenticator. This can be done using a call to the authenticator view. For example:
authenticator=getMultiAdapter((context, request), name=u"authenticator") if not authenticator.verify(): raise Unauthorized
b) Using decorator
You can do the same thing more conveniently using the
from plone.protect import CheckAuthenticator from plone.protect import protect @protect(CheckAuthenticator) def manage_doSomething(self, param, REQUEST=None): pass
c) Passing request to a function validator
from plone.protect import CheckAuthenticator ... CheckAuthenticator(self.context.REQUEST) ...
You can also pass in the token by using the header
X-CSRF-TOKEN. This can be
useful for AJAX requests.
The most common way to use plone.protect is through the
decorator. This decorator takes a list of checkers as parameters: each
checker will check a specific security aspect of the request. For example:
from plone.protect import protect from plone.protect import PostOnly @protect(PostOnly) def SensitiveMethod(self, REQUEST=None): # This is only allowed with HTTP POST requests.
This relies on the protected method having a parameter called REQUEST (case sensitive).
Customized Form Authentication
If you'd like use a different authentication token for different forms, you can provide an extra string to use with the token:
<tal:authenticator tal:define="authenticator context/@@authenticator"> <span tal:replace="structure python: authenticator.authenticator('a-form-related-value')"/> </tal:authenticator>
authenticator=getMultiAdapter((context, request), name=u"authenticator") if not authenticator.verify('a-form-related-value'): raise Unauthorized
With the decorator:
from plone.protect import CustomCheckAuthenticator from plone.protect import protect @protect(CustomCheckAuthenticator('a-form-related-value')) def manage_doSomething(self, param, REQUEST=None): pass
Automatic CSRF Protection
Since version 3, plone.protect provides automatic CSRF protection. It does this by automatically including the auth token to all internal forms when the user requesting the page is logged in.
Additionally, whenever a particular request attempts to write to the ZODB, it'll check for the existence of a correct auth token.
Allowing write on read programmatically
When you need to allow a known write on read, you've got several options.
Adding a CSRF token to your links
If you've got a GET request that causes a known write on read, your first
option should be to simply add a CSRF token to the URLs that result in that
plone.protect provides the
addTokenToUrl function for this
from plone.protect.utils import addTokenToUrl url = addTokenToUrl(url)
If you just want to allow an object to be writable on a request...
You can use the
safeWrite helper function:
from plone.protect.auto import safeWrite safeWrite(myobj, request)
Marking the entire request as safe
Just add the
IDisableCSRFProtection interface to the current request
from plone.protect.interfaces import IDisableCSRFProtection from zope.interface import alsoProvides alsoProvides(request, IDisableCSRFProtection)
Warning! When you do this, the current request is susceptible to CSRF exploits so do any required CSRF protection manually.
plone.protect also provides, by default, clickjacking protection since version 3.0.
To protect against this attack, Plone uses the X-Frame-Options
header. plone.protect will set the X-Frame-Options value to
To customize this value, you can set it to a custom value for a custom view
override it at your proxy server, or you can set the environment variable of
PLONE_X_FRAME_OPTIONS to whatever value you'd like plone.protect to set
this to globally.
You can opt out of this by making the environment variable empty.
Disable All Automatic CSRF Protection
To disable all automatic CSRF protection, set the environment variable
PLONE_CSRF_DISABLED value to
It is very dangerous to do this. Do not do this unless the ZEO client with this setting is not public and you know what you are doing.
This doesn't disable explicit and manual CSRF protection checks.
Fixing CSRF Protection failures in tests
If you get
Unauthorized errors in tests due to unprotected form submission
where normally automatic protection would be in place you can use the following
blueprint to protect your forms:
from plone.protect.authenticator import createToken from ..testing import MY_INTEGRATION_TESTING_LAYER import unittest class MyTest(unittest.TestCase): layer = MY_INTEGRATION_TESTING_LAYER def setUp(self): self.request = self.layer['request'] # Disable plone.protect for these tests self.request.form['_authenticator'] = createToken() # Eventuelly you find this also useful self.request.environ['REQUEST_METHOD'] = 'POST'
This package monkey patches a number of modules in order to better handle CSRF protection:
- Archetypes add forms, add csrf - Zope2 object locking support - pluggable auth csrf protection
If you are using a proxy cache in front of your site, be aware that
you will need to clear the entry for
time you update this package or you will find issues with modals while
plone.protect version 3 was made for Plone 5. You can use it on
Plone 4 for better protection, but you will need the
plone4.csrffixes hotfix package as well to avoid getting
needless warnings or errors. See the hotfix announcement and the