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Include default headers by default in API mode #32484
ActionDispatch's default headers are now moved into their own module that are by default included in both Base and API. This allows API-mode applications to take advantage of the default security headers, as well as providing an easy way to add more.
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I'm not sure we want to have the default headers in API mode since most of them are present to be interpreted by browsers, not by API clients
Per #32483, I thought your idea was moving this to a module that can be optionally included in ApplicationController in API applications, not making it a default
@guilleiguaran it was both - as mentioned above I can definitely move it out, but it seemed like a good feature to have. APIs are still vulnerable to these things even if they're only meant to be consumed by API clients, seems like a push toward secure-by-default.
I don't see any benefit in making it a default when most of the security headers we added are specific to give advice/instructions to browsers about how to act in certain circumstances. This is a summary of the headers that we include by default:
"X-Frame-Options" => can be used to indicate whether or not a browser should be allowed to render a page in a , <iframe> or . Sites can use this to avoid clickjacking attacks, by ensuring that their content is not embedded into other sites
"X-XSS-Protection" => instructs the XSS Auditor from browsers to not render the site when it detects a reflected XSS attempt.
"X-Content-Type-Options" => prevents browsers from making assumptions about the content type if the site didn't declare the type correctly.
"X-Download-Options" => Prevent auto-opening of files, this only for IE8
"X-Permitted-Cross-Domain-Policies" => This one is specific for Adobe Flash Player/Acrobat
"Referrer-Policy" => This is for browser Referrer header
There are any cases where you want to use those headers in the context of JSON/XML APIs?
We don't know what kind of content people are serving from their APIs. Any one of those headers could apply. Just because one usage of api_only is JSON/XML doesn't mean other content types couldn't be served.
For reference, here's all the stuff github's API responds with:
I really don't see why you wouldn't want this. Is there some kind of downside that I'm not seeing?
Regardless, the feature I actually wanted was for default_headers to even be applied to API controllers, because it was confusing to set them and then not see them applied. If this is an issue, I can just strip down the default headers but still allow them to be configured.