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Which Handshake, Which Identity?

It should be possible to permit different scopes to different client IDs

Last week, I had the pleasure of discussing REST access control patterns with Enterprise Architects and partnering technology folks. I also had the opportunity to present on this topic and one of the questions that came up afterwards was from a security architect who was unsure whether OAuth would be a good fit for some existing APIs that they have because those APIs happen to be consumed from two very different sources:

  1. from the inside, by internal applications that do not act on behalf of a particular subscriber but from the provider’s perspective
  2. from the outside, by applications that act on behalf of individual subscribers



OAuth 2.0 provides 4 core grant types that address different situations. In the case of the example described above, you could use the client creds grant type for the first type of access. It should be possible to permit different scopes to different client ids. The internal client ids would be allowed to request wider scopes. For the second type of consumption, the external one, any of the other 3 grant types could be applicable.

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Hope to see you at RSA next year,

-fl

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More Stories By Francois Lascelles

As Layer 7’s Chief Architect, Francois Lascelles guides the solutions architecture team and aligns product evolution with field trends. Francois joined Layer 7 in the company’s infancy – contributing as the first developer and designing the foundation of Layer 7’s Gateway technology. Now in a field-facing role, Francois helps enterprise architects apply the latest standards and patterns. Francois is a regular blogger and speaker and is also co-author of Service-Oriented Infrastructure: On-Premise and in the Cloud, published by Prentice Hall. Francois holds a Bachelor of Engineering degree from Ecole Polytechnique de Montreal and a black belt in OAuth. Follow Francois on Twitter: @flascelles

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