How To: Use secret scoping

Use scoping to limit the secrets that can be read by your application from secret stores

Once you configure a secret store for your application, any secret defined within that store is accessible by default from the Dapr application.

You can limit the Dapr application’s access to specific secrets by defining secret scopes. Simply add a secret scope policy to the application configuration with restrictive permissions.

The secret scoping policy applies to any secret store, including:

  • A local secret store
  • A Kubernetes secret store
  • A public cloud secret store

For details on how to set up a secret store, read How To: Retrieve a secret.

Watch this video for a demo on how to use secret scoping with your application.

Scenario 1 : Deny access to all secrets for a secret store

In this example, all secret access is denied to an application running on a Kubernetes cluster, which has a configured Kubernetes secret store named mycustomsecretstore. Aside from the user-defined custom store, the example also configures the Kubernetes default store (named kubernetes) to ensure all secrets are denied access. Learn more about the Kubernetes default secret store.

Define the following appconfig.yaml configuration and apply it to the Kubernetes cluster using the command kubectl apply -f appconfig.yaml.

apiVersion: dapr.io/v1alpha1
kind: Configuration
metadata:
  name: appconfig
spec:
  secrets:
    scopes:
      - storeName: kubernetes
        defaultAccess: deny
      - storeName: mycustomsecreststore
        defaultAccess: deny

For applications that need to be denied access to the Kubernetes secret store, follow these instructions, and add the following annotation to the application pod:

dapr.io/config: appconfig

With this defined, the application no longer has access to any secrets in the Kubernetes secret store.

Scenario 2 : Allow access to only certain secrets in a secret store

This example uses a secret store named vault. This could be a Hashicorp secret store component set on your application. To allow a Dapr application to have access to only secret1 and secret2 in the vault secret store, define the following appconfig.yaml:

apiVersion: dapr.io/v1alpha1
kind: Configuration
metadata:
  name: appconfig
spec:
  secrets:
    scopes:
      - storeName: vault
        defaultAccess: deny
        allowedSecrets: ["secret1", "secret2"]

The default access to the vault secret store is deny, while some secrets are accessible by the application, based on the allowedSecrets list. [Learn how to apply configuration to the sidecar]](https://docs.dapr.io/concepts/configuration-concept/).

Scenario 3: Deny access to certain sensitive secrets in a secret store

Define the following config.yaml:

apiVersion: dapr.io/v1alpha1
kind: Configuration
metadata:
  name: appconfig
spec:
  secrets:
    scopes:
      - storeName: vault
        defaultAccess: allow # this is the default value, line can be omitted
        deniedSecrets: ["secret1", "secret2"]

This example configuration explicitly denies access to secret1 and secret2 from the secret store named vault while allowing access to all other secrets. [Learn how to apply configuration to the sidecar]](https://docs.dapr.io/concepts/configuration-concept/).

Permission priority

The allowedSecrets and deniedSecrets list values take priority over the defaultAccess policy.

Scenarios defaultAccess allowedSecrets deniedSecrets permission
1 - Only default access deny/allow empty empty deny/allow
2 - Default deny with allowed list deny [“s1”] empty only “s1” can be accessed
3 - Default allow with deneied list allow empty [“s1”] only “s1” cannot be accessed
4 - Default allow with allowed list allow [“s1”] empty only “s1” can be accessed
5 - Default deny with denied list deny empty [“s1”] deny
6 - Default deny/allow with both lists deny/allow [“s1”] [“s2”] only “s1” can be accessed

Last modified October 7, 2022: Upmerge v1.8 to v1.9 - 10/07 (#2868) (ce4600bd)