In apstrata, all requests must be authenticated. There are three methods for authenticating apstrata requests:
1. Default signature: This is the most secure method of authentication because it requires hashing all content of a request along with the secret of the account or the password of the user and then sending the hash.
2. Simple signature: This is the easiest method of authentication. It requires hashing a few select parameters along with the secret of the account or the password of the user and then sending the hash. It is recommended for testing and for applications that do not have access to all parameters, like files, in a request.
3. Token-based authentication: This is the recommended method of authentication for applications that make most requests with apstrata users, as opposed to owners, for use with SSL encrypted connections over HTTP POST. It provides a similar experience to sessions since a token is generated and renewed over a period of time, without the need to generate a signature for every request.
The authentication roadmap for the apstrata database includes optional replay prevention.
Apstrata services only accept authenticated requests. Authenticating an apstrata service request means either sending it with the apsws.authSig parameter or a valid value for the apsdb.token parameter. Creating the signature parameter for owner requests requires the developer to know their authentication key (apsws.authKey) and their authentication secret. Creating the signature parameter for user requests requires the developer to know their authentication key (apsws.authKey), the user login, and the user password. generating tokens requires generating a user request to VerifyCredentials in order to generate a token and then sending the token with every consecutive request in order to authenticate it. The token needs to be constantly renewed and requires re-authentication when its lifetime expires. The authentication key and the secret will be provided upon registration. The user login and the password are chosen when creating an apstrata user. Note that the secret works as a password for accessing our services suite and hence your data.
Never reveal your authentication secret to a third party, an apstrata database affiliate will never ask for your secret. In case you feel that your authentication secret has been compromised, you can create a new one.
Two types of signatures exist, one which is more secure and complex to construct, and another version which is simpler to construct but less secure.