The secret-token URI Scheme
draft-nottingham-how-did-that-get-into-the-repo-01

Document Type Active Internet-Draft (individual in art area)
Last updated 2018-11-06
Stream IETF
Intended RFC status Proposed Standard
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Document shepherd Murray Kucherawy
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Responsible AD Alexey Melnikov
IESG note Based on DISPATCH discussion: is this going to change to Informational?
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Network Working Group                                      M. Nottingham
Internet-Draft                                          November 7, 2018
Intended status: Informational
Expires: May 11, 2019

                      The secret-token URI Scheme
           draft-nottingham-how-did-that-get-into-the-repo-01

Abstract

   This document registers the "secret-token" URI scheme, to aid in the
   identification of authentication tokens.

Note to Readers

   _RFC EDITOR: please remove this section before publication_

   The issues list for this draft can be found at
   https://github.com/mnot/I-D/labels/how-did-that-get-into-the-repo
   [1].

   The most recent (often, unpublished) draft is at
   https://mnot.github.io/I-D/how-did-that-get-into-the-repo/ [2].

   Recent changes are listed at https://github.com/mnot/I-D/commits/gh-
   pages/how-did-that-get-into-the-repo [3].

   See also the draft's current status in the IETF datatracker, at
   https://datatracker.ietf.org/doc/draft-nottingham-how-did-that-get-
   into-the-repo/ [4].

Status of This Memo

   This Internet-Draft is submitted in full conformance with the
   provisions of BCP 78 and BCP 79.

   Internet-Drafts are working documents of the Internet Engineering
   Task Force (IETF).  Note that other groups may also distribute
   working documents as Internet-Drafts.  The list of current Internet-
   Drafts is at https://datatracker.ietf.org/drafts/current/.

   Internet-Drafts are draft documents valid for a maximum of six months
   and may be updated, replaced, or obsoleted by other documents at any
   time.  It is inappropriate to use Internet-Drafts as reference
   material or to cite them other than as "work in progress."

   This Internet-Draft will expire on May 11, 2019.

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Copyright Notice

   Copyright (c) 2018 IETF Trust and the persons identified as the
   document authors.  All rights reserved.

   This document is subject to BCP 78 and the IETF Trust's Legal
   Provisions Relating to IETF Documents
   (https://trustee.ietf.org/license-info) in effect on the date of
   publication of this document.  Please review these documents
   carefully, as they describe your rights and restrictions with respect
   to this document.  Code Components extracted from this document must
   include Simplified BSD License text as described in Section 4.e of
   the Trust Legal Provisions and are provided without warranty as
   described in the Simplified BSD License.

Table of Contents

   1.  Introduction  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   2
     1.1.  Notational Conventions  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   3
   2.  The secret-token URI scheme . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   3
   3.  IANA Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   4
   4.  Security Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   4
   5.  References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   4
     5.1.  Normative References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   4
     5.2.  URIs  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   5
   Author's Address  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   5

1.  Introduction

   It has become increasingly common to use bearer tokens as an
   authentication mechanism.

   Unfortunately, the number of security incidents involving accidental
   disclosure of these tokens has also increased.  For example, we now
   regularly hear about a developer committing an access token to a
   public source code repository, either because they didn't realise it
   was included in the committed code, or because they didn't realise
   the implications of its disclosure.

   This specification registers the "secret-token" URI scheme to aid
   prevention of such accidental disclosures.  When tokens are easier to
   unambiguously identify, they can trigger warnings in Continuous
   Integration systems, or be used in source code repositories
   themselves.  They can also be scanned for separately.

   For example, if cloud.example.net issues access tokens to its clients
   for later use, and it does so by formatting them as secret-token
   URIs, tokens that "leak" into places that they don't belong are

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   easier to identify.  This could be through a variety of mechanisms;
   for example, if repo.example.com can be configured to refuse commits
   containing secret-token URIs, it helps its customers avoid accidental
   disclosures.

   secret-token URIs are intended to aid in identification of generated
   secrets like API keys and similar tokens.  They are not intended for
   use in controlled situations where ephemeral tokens are used, such as
   things ike CSRF tokens.

1.1.  Notational Conventions

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