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RBAC rules

Dgraph support Role Based Access Control (RBAC) on GraphQL API operations: you can specify who can invoke query, add, update and delete operations on each type of your GraphQL schema based on JWT claims, using the @auth directive.

To implement Role Based Access Control on GraphQL API operations :

  1. Ensure your have configured the GraphQL schema to Handle JWT tokens using # Dgraph.Authorization
    This step is important to be able to use the JWT claims
  2. Annotate the Types in the GraphQL schema with the @auth directive and specify conditions to be met for query, add, update or delete operations.
  3. Deploy the GraphQL schema either with a schema update or via the Cloud console’s Schema page.

The generic format of RBAC rule is as follow

type User @auth(
    query: { rule:  "{$<claim>: { eq: \"<value>\" } }" },
    add: { rule:  "{$<claim>: { in: [\"<value1>\",...] } }" },
    update: ...
    delete: ...

Where <claim> is a JWT claim from the JWT token payload.

You can use eq or in function to test the value of any claim.

For example the following schema has a @auth directive specifying that a delete operation on a User object can only be done in the connected user has a ‘ROLE’ claim in the JWT token with the value “ADMIN” :

type User @auth( 
     delete: { rule: "{$ROLE: { eq: \"ADMIN\" } }"} 
    ) { 
    username: String! 
    @id todos: [Todo] 

rules combination

Rules can be combined with the logical connectives and, or and not. A permission can be a mixture of graph traversals and role based rules.

In the todo app, you can express, for example, that you can delete a Todo if you are the author, or are the site admin.

type Todo @auth(
    delete: { or: [ 
        { rule:  "query ($USER: String!) { ... }" }, # you are the author graph query
        { rule:  "{$ROLE: { eq: \"ADMIN\" } }" }


Rules may use claims from the namespace specified by the # Dgraph.Authorization or claims present at the root level of the JWT payload.

For example, given the following JWT payload

   "": [
      "ROLE": "ADMIN"
  "USERROLE": "user1",
  "email": "[email protected]"

The authorization rules can use $ROLE (if is declared as the namespace to use ) and also $USEROLE or $email.

In cases where the same claim is present in the namespace and at the root level, the claim value in the namespacetakes precedence.

@auth on Interfaces

The rules provided inside the @auth directive on an interface will be applied as an AND rule to those on the implementing types.

A type inherits the @auth rules of all the implemented interfaces. The final authorization rule is an AND of the type’s @auth rule and of all the implemented interfaces.