Service Account Privilege Management


GigaSpaces already secures user accounts by, for example, using IDP. This is now being expanded to include the securing of service accounts. A Service Account  is an account that is typically used by an application or a compute workload. It is an application that wishes to access GigaSpaces resources. This could either be a user of applications or components that wish to access GigaSpaces APIs. A service account differs to a user account in that it is associated with software that runs in our XAP SkylineClosed A highly customizable developer platform that allows building scalable HA with high throughput and ultra-low latency Java applications running on Kubernetes clusters or Smart DIHClosed Smart DIH allows enterprises to develop and deploy digital services in an agile manner, without disturbing core business applications. This is achieved by creating an event-driven, highly performing, efficient and available replica of the data from multiple systems and applications, environments.

The service account has both internal and external applications:

GigaSpaces has a mechanism that will manage the service account application types mentioned above.

Authentication Flow


  1. An application is introduced that wants to access the SpaceClosed Where GigaSpaces data is stored. It is the logical cache that holds data objects in memory and might also hold them in layered in tiering. Data is hosted from multiple SoRs, consolidated as a unified data model., like a PUClosed This is the unit of packaging and deployment in the GigaSpaces Data Grid, and is essentially the main GigaSpaces service. The Processing Unit (PU) itself is typically deployed onto the Service Grid. When a Processing Unit is deployed, a Processing Unit instance is the actual runtime entity.. By default the Space is locked for read/write access.

    The application contains a secret (hidden) secret.

  2. As part of the connection process, the application asks the authentication service (part of Kubernetes) if it accepts the secret and then tries to match that secret with an existing secret that it already has stored.

  3. If a match is found the secret is accepted.

  4. If no match is found, the access to the Space is denied.

  5. A JWTClosed JSON Web Token is a compact URL-safe means of representing claims to be transferred between two parties. The claims in a JWT are encoded as a JSON. JWTs are credentials, which can grant access to resources. token is created. The JWT token is used to check for validity and is authenticated. It is temporary and contains an expiration date.

  6. The JWT token is used to authenticate and authorize access to the Space.

  7. The Space checks the JWT token and the roles (for example read/write permission associated to the role).

  8. If the JWT or the role in the JWT are not permitted, the Space will deny access.

  9. If the access is granted, then access to the Space will be granted.


  • Internal Smart DIH: Services that are created from within our XAP Skyline or Smart DIH environments, such as a Pipeline or a Micro-Service, will automatically be registered.  A service account will be created for any new service and this will be transparent to the user.

  • External Applications: There is an interface through which a user can register their application as a service account so GigaSpaces is aware of it.

Once the services are defined, roles can be assigned to them. From then, all the privileges management uses the RBACClosed Role-based access control (RBAC), also known as role-based security, is a mechanism that restricts system access. It involves setting permissions and privileges to enable access to authorized users. model which replicates what is implemented for user accounts. Due to this, it seamlessly compliments the already available security authorization management.

Authentication APIs

The following authentication APIs are available

API Type Usage How Secret is Applied Result
Proxy Java apps that require access the Space from a micro-service, PU, etc. In a file (Kubernetes secret) Proxy initializes actions limited to the role defined
API Access APIs In the URL JWT created
Data Gateway Dbeaver, Tableau, PowerBI ID/secret contained in the credentials A connection to the Space
V3 Driver JDBCClosed Java DataBase Connectivity. This is an application programming interface (API) for the Java programming language, which defines how a client may access a database. access ID/secret contained in the credentials A connection to the Space

Service Account Secrets

Service account secrets are generated by GigaSpaces automatically.  Users cannot generate or provide their own secrets.  SpaceDeckClosed GigaSpaces intuitive, streamlined user interface to set up, manage and control their environment. Using SpaceDeck, users can define the tools to bring legacy System of Record (SoR) databases into the in-memory data grid that is the core of the GigaSpaces system. is used to manage the secrets of the Service Accounts. They are certain default Service Accounts that will always be displayed and they are required to run the system. These are predefined in the system.


Through SpaceDeck, roles can be defined per service accounts. This uses the same mechanism that is employed for user accounts.  The Space doesn't differentiate between a user or an application, it just checks the JWT token and authenticates it against the application which has created it. The Space checks the authenticity of the JWT token and receives the claim + role. In terms of authorization, the role is being checked according to the role and privileges contained in it and knows if the requested operations are allowed or not.

Best Practice

  • It is advised to change the secret if there is a problem with the application or if you think it has been compromised. In this case, the service account can also be revoked, which blocks it. The secret is not typically changed for internal processes (e.g. Pipeline) unless it is suspected that someone is compromising the secret, as this would block everything (e.g. the XAP Manager for performing scale operations, or the creation of Pipelines).

  • It is important to note that the expiration of the JWT token is not the same as the expiration of the secret. The JWT token can have an expiration time configured for 5 minutes, for example, and this means it can be used even if that service account is revoked. Only after the expiry time, after being revoked (in this example 5 minutes), and a new JWT token is requested will the application not be provided with one. In summary, the post revoke access is not blocked until the JWT token has expired.

  • Secrets should be rotated. GigaSpaces currently does not have the ability for automatic rotations.  This means, users should rotate the secrets manually through SpaceDeck, every half a year with the procedure provided by GigaSpaces.  When the secrets in the authentication server are rotated this will necessitate changing all the secrets in the external clients.

How To

Please refer to our SpaceDeck documentation which explains how service accounts,. secrets, roles and privileges are created and managed.