Authentication and authorization

Services Authentication (Client-side)

Authentication can be configured per service instance with authentication_required. This is a boolean service class field which defines if the client needs to be authenticated before accessing the service.


OpenTAXII supports session-less token-based authentication as primary method of authentication with fallback to HTTP Basic Authentication.

If authentication is required, OpenTAXII expects clients to obtain a token first and send it as Authorization HTTP header value (formatted as Bearer TOKENVALUE) with every TAXII request.

To obtain a token, client sends a POST request with username and password to authentication service running on /management/auth endpoint.

Request data can be a form-encoded string or a JSON dictionary with username and password fields:

(venv) $ curl -d 'username=test&password=test' http://localhost:9000/management/auth


(venv) $ curl -H "Content-Type: application/json" -d '{"username":"test","password":"test"}' http://localhost:9000/management/auth

A server will reply with a JSON dictionary that contains a token. For example:

  "token": "eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJhY2NvdW50X2lkIjoxLCJleHAiOjE0Mjc2MzgyMjN9.oKd43j4KR1Ovu8zOtwFdeaKILys_kpl3fAiECclP7_4"

To query a service with authentication enabled, pass the token in a value of Authorization HTTP header. Example request using Cabby library CLI command:

# using raw HTTP header
(venv) $ taxii-poll \
            --path http://localhost:9000/services/poll-a \
            --collection collection-a \
            --header Authorization:'Bearer eyJleHAiOjE0MjY3OTMwOTYsImFsZyI6IkhTMjU2IiwiaWF0IjoxNDI2Nzg1ODk2fQ.eyJ1c2VyX2lkIjoxfQ.YsZIdbrU92dL8j5G8ydVAsdWHXtx371vC0POmXrS3W8'

# using JWT support in Cabby
(venv) $ taxii-poll \
            --host localhost \
            --port 9000 \
            --path /services/poll-a \
            --collection collection-a \
            --username test \
            --password test \
            --jwt-auth /management/auth

An alternative to that is to use Basic Authentication: client sends username/password formatted as Basic Authentication header with every TAXII request, OpenTAXII decodes it and passes username/password pair to Auth API for authentication.

Authentication Implementation

The build-in Authentication API implementation uses JWT (JSON Web Token) to create tokens.

Token TTL is set to 60 minutes by default but can be configured with token_ttl_secs in Auth API settings in custom configuration.

Authentication API needs to be able to identify a client based on the token (method opentaxii.auth.api.OpenTAXIIAuthAPI.get_account() of the API). The built-in implementation does that by encoding account ID inside the token.

Next steps

Continue to Public code-level APIs page for the details about OpenTAXII APIs.