Scaling Privileged Access for Modern Infrastructure: Real-World Insights
Apr 25
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Application Access Role-Based Access Control

This article describes access control concepts particularly relevant to the Teleport Application Service.

Assigning labels to applications

The Teleport Application Service uses labels to control access to the proxied web applications.

Teleport administrators can assign static and dynamic labels to apps using configuration:

apps:
- name: "grafana"
  uri: "http://localhost:3000"
  # Static labels.
  labels:
    env: "prod"
    group: "metrics"
  # Teleport periodically executes commands in dynamic labels and uses the
  # commands output in label values.
  commands:
  - name: "arch"
    command: ["uname", "-p"]
    period: 1m0s

Configuring application labels in roles

Teleport administrators can configure roles to allow or deny users' access to applications with specific labels using app_labels property.

For example, this role will grant access to all applications from the group "metrics", except for the production ones:

kind: role
version: v5
metadata:
  name: dev
spec:
  allow:
    app_labels:
      group: "metrics"
  deny:
    app_labels:
      env: "prod"

Integrating with identity providers

You can configure roles to populate app labels dynamically based on the user's claims and attributes received from identity providers. This is done by using template variables with external prefix.

For example, this role will have its env and group label values set after the Okta user's attributes with the same names:

allow:
  app_labels:
    env: "{{external.env}}"
    group: "{{external.group}}"

Enabling a user to access Azure managed identities

You can authorize your Teleport user to assume an Azure identity and execute Azure CLI commands via Teleport. To do so, define a role with the spec.allow.azure_identities field, as shown below:

kind: role
version: v5
metadata:
  name: azure-cli-access
spec:
  allow:
    app_labels:
      '*': '*'
    azure_identities:
      - /subscriptions/00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000/resourceGroups/my-resource-group/providers/Microsoft.ManagedIdentity/userAssignedIdentities/teleport-azure

Modify the spec.allow.azure_identities field so that each item is the full URI of an Azure managed identity that you would like to enable users with this role to assume. The example above allows the user to assume the teleport-azure identity.

Another approach is to define a user's permitted Azure identities by configuring each user separately. To do so, create a role with one element within azure_identities set to the template variable {{internal.azure_identities}}:

kind: role
version: v5
metadata:
  name: azure-cli-access
spec:
  allow:
    app_labels:
      '*': '*'
    azure_identities:
      - '{{internal.azure_identities}}'

In this case, when a user authenticates to the Azure CLI via Teleport, the Teleport Auth Service populates the {{internal.azure_identities}} template variable with any Azure identities you have assigned to the user.

To assign Azure identities to a user, run a tctl users update command similar to the following:

tctl users update myuser --set-azure-identities \/subscriptions/00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000/resourceGroups/my-resource-group/providers/Microsoft.ManagedIdentity/userAssignedIdentities/id1,\/subscriptions/00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000/resourceGroups/my-resource-group/providers/Microsoft.ManagedIdentity/userAssignedIdentities/id2

This command uses the --set-azure-identities flag to add Azure identities to a user. The value of this flag is a comma-separated list of Azure identity URIs.

See our Azure CLI guide for more information on enabling access to Azure managed identities.

Next steps