Tag Archives: Access management

Use IAM Access Analyzer policy generation to grant fine-grained permissions for your AWS CloudFormation service roles

Post Syndicated from Joel Knight original https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/security/use-iam-access-analyzer-policy-generation-to-grant-fine-grained-permissions-for-your-aws-cloudformation-service-roles/

AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM) Access Analyzer provides tools to simplify permissions management by making it simpler for you to set, verify, and refine permissions. One such tool is IAM Access Analyzer policy generation, which creates fine-grained policies based on your AWS CloudTrail access activity—for example, the actions you use with Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2), AWS Lambda, and Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3). AWS has expanded policy generation capabilities to support the identification of actions used from over 140 services. New additions include services such as AWS CloudFormation, Amazon DynamoDB, and Amazon Simple Queue Service (Amazon SQS). When you request a policy, IAM Access Analyzer generates a policy by analyzing your CloudTrail logs to identify actions used from this group of over 140 services. The generated policy makes it efficient to grant only the required permissions for your workloads. For other services, Access Analyzer helps you by identifying the services used and guides you to add the necessary actions.

In this post, we will show how you can use Access Analyzer to generate an IAM permissions policy that restricts CloudFormation permissions to only those actions that are necessary to deploy a given template, in order to follow the principle of least privilege.

Permissions for AWS CloudFormation

AWS CloudFormation lets you create a collection of related AWS and third-party resources and provision them in a consistent and repeatable fashion. A common access management pattern is to grant developers permission to use CloudFormation to provision resources in the production environment and limit their ability to do so directly. This directs developers to make infrastructure changes in production through CloudFormation, using infrastructure-as-code patterns to manage the changes.

CloudFormation can create, update, and delete resources on the developer’s behalf by assuming an IAM role that has sufficient permissions. Cloud administrators often grant this IAM role broad permissions–in excess of what’s necessary to just create, update, and delete the resources from the developer’s template–because it’s not clear what the minimum permissions are for the template. As a result, the developer could use CloudFormation to create or modify resources outside of what’s required for their workload.

The best practice for CloudFormation is to acquire permissions by using the credentials from an IAM role you pass to CloudFormation. When you attach a least-privilege permissions policy to the role, the actions CloudFormation is allowed to perform can be scoped to only those that are necessary to manage the resources in the template. In this way, you can avoid anti-patterns such as assigning the AdministratorAccess or PowerUserAccess policies—both of which grant excessive permissions—to the role.

The following section will describe how to set up your account and grant these permissions.

Prepare your development account

Within your development account, you will configure the same method for deploying infrastructure as you use in production: passing a role to CloudFormation when you launch a stack. First, you will verify that you have the necessary permissions, and then you will create the role and the role’s permissions policy.

Get permissions to use CloudFormation and IAM Access Analyzer

You will need the following minimal permissions in your development account:

  • Permission to use CloudFormation, in particular to create, update, and delete stacks
  • Permission to pass an IAM role to CloudFormation
  • Permission to create IAM roles and policies
  • Permission to use Access Analyzer, specifically the GetGeneratedPolicy, ListPolicyGenerations, and StartPolicyGeneration actions

The following IAM permissions policy can be used to grant your identity these permissions.

{
    "Version": "2012-10-17",
    "Statement": [
        {
            "Sid": "DeveloperPermissions”,
            "Effect": "Allow",
            "Action": [
                "access-analyzer:GetGeneratedPolicy",
                "access-analyzer:ListPolicyGenerations",
                "access-analyzer:StartPolicyGeneration",
                "cloudformation:*",
                "iam:AttachRolePolicy",
                "iam:CreatePolicy",
                "iam:CreatePolicyVersion",
                "iam:CreateRole",
                "iam:DeletePolicyVersion",
                "iam:DeleteRolePolicy",
                "iam:DetachRolePolicy",
                "iam:GetPolicy",
                "iam:GetPolicyVersion",
                "iam:GetRole",
                "iam:GetRolePolicy",
                "iam:ListPolicies",
                "iam:ListPolicyTags",
                "iam:ListPolicyVersions",
                "iam:ListRolePolicies",
                "iam:ListRoleTags",
                "iam:ListRoles",
                "iam:PutRolePolicy",
                "iam:UpdateAssumeRolePolicy"
            ],
            "Resource": "*"
        },
        {
            "Sid": "AllowPassCloudFormationRole”,
            "Effect": "Allow",
            "Action": [
                "iam:PassRole"
            ]
            "Resource": "*",
            "Condition": {
                "StringEquals": {
                    "iam:PassedToService": "cloudformation.amazonaws.com"
                }
            }
        }
    ]
}

Note: If your identity already has these permissions through existing permissions policies, there is no need to apply the preceding policy to your identity.

Create a role for CloudFormation

Creating a service role for CloudFormation in the development account makes it less challenging to generate the least-privilege policy, because it becomes simpler to identify the actions CloudFormation is taking as it creates and deletes resources defined in the template. By identifying the actions CloudFormation has taken, you can create a permissions policy to match.

To create an IAM role in your development account for CloudFormation

  1. Open the IAM console and choose Roles, then choose Create role.
  2. For the trusted entity, choose AWS service. From the list of services, choose CloudFormation.
  3. Choose Next: Permissions.
  4. Select one or more permissions policies that align with the types of resources your stack will create. For example, if your stack creates a Lambda function and an IAM role, choose the AWSLambda_FullAccess and IAMFullAccess policies.

    Note: Because you have not yet created the least-privilege permissions policy, the role is granted broader permissions than required. You will use this role to launch your stack and evaluate the resulting actions that CloudFormation takes, in order to build a lower-privilege policy.

  5. Choose Next: Tags to proceed.
  6. Enter one or more optional tags, and then choose Next: Review.
  7. Enter a name for the role, such as CloudFormationDevExecRole.
  8. Choose Create role.

Create and destroy the stack

To have CloudFormation exercise the actions required by the stack, you will need to create and destroy the stack.

To create and destroy the stack

  1. Navigate to CloudFormation in the console, expand the menu in the left-hand pane, and choose Stacks.
  2. On the Stacks page, choose Create Stack, and then choose With new resources.
  3. Choose Template is ready, choose Upload a template file, and then select the file for your template. Choose Next.
  4. Enter a Stack name, and then choose Next.
  5. For IAM execution role name, select the name of the role you created in the previous section (CloudFormationDevExecRole). Choose Next.
  6. Review the stack configuration. If present, select the check box(es) in the Capabilities section, and then choose Create stack.
  7. Wait for the stack to reach the CREATE_COMPLETE state before continuing.
  8. From the list of stacks, select the stack you just created, choose Delete, and then choose Delete stack.
  9. Wait until the stack reaches the DELETE_COMPLETE state (at which time it will also disappear from the list of active stacks).

Note: It’s recommended that you also modify the CloudFormation template and update the stack to initiate updates to the deployed resources. This will allow Access Analyzer to capture actions that update the stack’s resources, in addition to create and delete actions. You should also review the API documentation for the resources that are being used in your stack and identify any additional actions that may be required.

Now that the development environment is ready, you can create the least-privilege permissions policy for the CloudFormation role.

Use Access Analyzer to generate a fine-grained identity policy

Access Analyzer reviews the access history in AWS CloudTrail to identify the actions an IAM role has used. Because CloudTrail delivers logs within an average of about 15 minutes of an API call, you should wait at least that long after you delete the stack before you attempt to generate the policy, in order to properly capture all of the actions.

Note: CloudTrail must be enabled in your AWS account in order for policy generation to work. To learn how create a CloudTrail trail, see Creating a trail for your AWS account in the AWS CloudTrail User Guide.

To generate a permissions policy by using Access Analyzer

  1. Open the IAM console and choose Roles. In the search box, enter CloudFormationDevExecRole and select the role name in the list.
  2. On the Permissions tab, scroll down and choose Generate policy based on CloudTrail events to expand this section. Choose Generate policy.
  3. Select the time period of the CloudTrail logs you want analyzed.
  4. Select the AWS Region where you created and deleted the stack, and then select the CloudTrail trail name in the drop-down list.
  5. If this is your first time generating a policy, choose Create and use a new service role to have an IAM role automatically created for you. You can view the permissions policy the role will receive by choosing View permission details. Otherwise, choose Use an existing service role and select a role in the drop-down list.

    The policy generation options are shown in Figure 1.

    Figure 1: Policy generation options

    Figure 1: Policy generation options

  6. Choose Generate policy.

You will be redirected back to the page that shows the CloudFormationDevExecRole role. The Status in the Generate policy based on CloudTrail events section will show In progress. Wait for the policy to be generated, at which time the status will change to Success.

Review the generated policy

You must review and save the generated policy before it can be applied to the role.

To review the generated policy

  1. While you are still viewing the CloudFormationDevExecRole role in the IAM console, under Generate policy based on CloudTrail events, choose View generated policy.
  2. The Generated policy page will open. The Actions included in the generated policy section will show a list of services and one or more actions that were found in the CloudTrail log. Review the list for omissions. Refer to the IAM documentation for a list of AWS services for which an action-level policy can be generated. An example list of services and actions for a CloudFormation template that creates a Lambda function is shown in Figure 2.
    Figure 2: Actions included in the generated policy

    Figure 2: Actions included in the generated policy

  3. Use the drop-down menus in the Add actions for services used section to add any necessary additional actions to the policy for the services that were identified by using CloudTrail. This might be needed if an action isn’t recorded in CloudTrail or if action-level information isn’t supported for a service.

    Note: The iam:PassRole action will not show up in CloudTrail and should be added manually if your CloudFormation template assigns an IAM role to a service (for example, when creating a Lambda function). A good rule of thumb is: If you see iam:CreateRole in the actions, you likely need to also allow iam:PassRole. An example of this is shown in Figure 3.

    Figure 3: Adding PassRole as an IAM action

    Figure 3: Adding PassRole as an IAM action

  4. When you’ve finished adding additional actions, choose Next.

Generated policies contain placeholders that need to be filled in with resource names, AWS Region names, and other variable data. The actual values for these placeholders should be determined based on the content of your CloudFormation template and the Region or Regions you plan to deploy the template to.

To replace placeholders with real values

  • In the generated policy, identify each of the Resource properties that use placeholders in the value, such as ${RoleNameWithPath} or ${Region}. Use your knowledge of the resources that your CloudFormation template creates to properly fill these in with real values.
    • ${RoleNameWithPath} is an example of a placeholder that reflects the name of a resource from your CloudFormation template. Replace the placeholder with the actual name of the resource.
    • ${Region} is an example of a placeholder that reflects where the resource is being deployed, which in this case is the AWS Region. Replace this with either the Region name (for example, us-east-1), or a wildcard character (*), depending on whether you want to restrict the policy to a specific Region or to all Regions, respectively.

For example, a statement from the policy generated earlier is shown following.

{
    "Effect": "Allow",
    "Action": [
        "lambda:CreateFunction",
        "lambda:DeleteFunction",
        "lambda:GetFunction",
        "lambda:GetFunctionCodeSigningConfig"
    ],
    "Resource": "arn:aws:lambda:${Region}:${Account}:function:${FunctionName}"
},

After substituting real values for the placeholders in Resource, it looks like the following.

{
    "Effect": "Allow",
    "Action": [
        "lambda:CreateFunction",
        "lambda:DeleteFunction",
        "lambda:GetFunction",
        "lambda:GetFunctionCodeSigningConfig"
    ],
    "Resource": "arn:aws:lambda:*:123456789012:function:MyLambdaFunction"
},

This statement allows the Lambda actions to be performed on a function named MyLambdaFunction in AWS account 123456789012 in any Region (*). Substitute the correct values for Region, Account, and FunctionName in your policy.

The IAM policy editor window will automatically identify security or other issues in the generated policy. Review and remediate the issues identified in the Security, Errors, Warnings, and Suggestions tabs across the bottom of the window.

To review and remediate policy issues

  1. Use the Errors tab at the bottom of the IAM policy editor window (powered by IAM Access Analyzer policy validation) to help identify any placeholders that still need to be replaced. Access Analyzer policy validation reviews the policy and provides findings that include security warnings, errors, general warnings, and suggestions for your policy. To find more information about the different checks, see Access Analyzer policy validation. An example of policy errors caused by placeholders still being present in the policy is shown in Figure 4.
    Figure 4: Errors identified in the generated policy

    Figure 4: Errors identified in the generated policy

  2. Use the Security tab at the bottom of the editor window to review any security warnings, such as passing a wildcard (*) resource with the iam:PassRole permission. Choose the Learn more link beside each warning for information about remediation. An example of a security warning related to PassRole is shown in Figure 5.
    Figure 5: Security warnings identified in the generated policy

    Figure 5: Security warnings identified in the generated policy

Remediate the PassRole With Star In Resource warning by modifying Resource in the iam:PassRole statement to list the Amazon Resource Name (ARN) of any roles that CloudFormation needs to pass to other services. Additionally, add a condition to restrict which service the role can be passed to. For example, to allow passing a role named MyLambdaRole to the Lambda service, the statement would look like the following.

        {
            "Effect": "Allow",
            "Action": [
                "iam:PassRole"
            ],
            "Resource": [
                "arn:aws:iam::123456789012:role/MyLambdaRole"
            ],
            "Condition": {
                "StringEquals": {
                    "iam:PassedToService": [
                        "lambda.amazonaws.com"
                    ]
                }
            }
        }

The generated policy can now be saved as an IAM policy.

To save the generated policy

  1. In the IAM policy editor window, choose Next.
  2. Enter a name for the policy and an optional description.
  3. Review the Summary section with the list of permissions in the policy.
  4. Enter optional tags in the Tags section.
  5. Choose Create and attach policy.

Test this policy by replacing the existing role policy with this newly generated policy. Then create and destroy the stack again so that the necessary permissions are granted. If the stack fails during creation or deletion, follow the steps to generate the policy again and make sure that the correct values are being used for any iam:PassRole statements.

Deploy the CloudFormation role and policy

Now that you have the least-privilege policy created, you can give this policy to the cloud administrator so that they can deploy the policy and CloudFormation service role into production.

To create a CloudFormation template that the cloud administrator can use

  1. Open the IAM console, choose Policies, and then use the search box to search for the policy you created. Select the policy name in the list.
  2. On the Permissions tab, make sure that the {}JSON button is activated. Select the policy document by highlighting from line 1 all the way to the last line in the policy, as shown in Figure 6.
    Figure 6: Highlighting the generated policy

    Figure 6: Highlighting the generated policy

  3. With the policy still highlighted, use your keyboard to copy the policy into the clipboard (Ctrl-C on Linux or Windows, Option-C on macOS).
  4. Paste the permissions policy JSON object into the following CloudFormation template, replacing the <POLICY-JSON-GOES-HERE> marker. Be sure to indent the left-most curly braces of the JSON object so that they are to the right of the PolicyDocument keyword.
    AWSTemplateFormatVersion: '2010-09-09'
    
    Parameters:
      PolicyName:
        Type: String
        Description: The name of the IAM policy that will be created
    
      RoleName:
        Type: String
        Description: The name of the IAM role that will be created
    
    Resources:
      CfnPolicy:
        Type: AWS::IAM::ManagedPolicy
        Properties:
          ManagedPolicyName: !Ref PolicyName
          Path: /
          PolicyDocument: >
            <POLICY-JSON-GOES-HERE>
    
      CfnRole:
        Type: AWS::IAM::Role
        Properties:
          RoleName: !Ref RoleName
          AssumeRolePolicyDocument:
            Version: '2012-10-17'
            Statement:
              - Action:
                - sts:AssumeRole
                Effect: Allow
                Principal:
                  Service:
                    - cloudformation.amazonaws.com
          ManagedPolicyArns:
            - !Ref CfnPolicy
          Path: /

    For example, after pasting the policy, the CfnPolicy resource in the template will look like the following.

    CfnPolicy:
        Type: AWS::IAM::ManagedPolicy
        Properties:
          ManagedPolicyName: !Ref PolicyName
          Path: /
          PolicyDocument: >
            {
                "Version": "2012-10-17",
                "Statement": [
                    {
                        "Effect": "Allow",
                        "Action": "ec2:DescribeNetworkInterfaces",
                        "Resource": [
                            "*"
                        ]
                    },
                    {
                        "Effect": "Allow",
                        "Action": [
                            "iam:AttachRolePolicy",
                            "iam:CreateRole",
                            "iam:DeleteRole",
                            "iam:DetachRolePolicy",
                            "iam:GetRole"
                        ],
                        "Resource": [
                            "arn:aws:iam::123456789012:role/MyLambdaRole"
                        ]
                    },
                    {
                        "Effect": "Allow",
                        "Action": [
                            "lambda:CreateFunction",
                            "lambda:DeleteFunction",
                            "lambda:GetFunction",
                            "lambda:GetFunctionCodeSigningConfig"
                        ],
                        "Resource": [
                            "arn:aws:lambda:*:123456789012:function:MyLambdaFunction"
                        ]
                    },
                    {
                        "Effect": "Allow",
                        "Action": [
                            "iam:PassRole"
                        ],
                        "Resource": [
                            "arn:aws:iam::123456789012:role/MyLambdaRole"
                        ],
                        "Condition": {
                            "StringEquals": {
                                "iam:PassedToService": [
                                    "lambda.amazonaws.com"
                                ]
                            }
                        }
                    }
                ]
            }

  5. Save the CloudFormation template and share it with the cloud administrator. They can use this template to create an IAM role and permissions policy that CloudFormation can use to deploy resources in the production account.

Note: Verify that in addition to having the necessary permissions to work with CloudFormation, your production identity also has permission to perform the iam:PassRole action with CloudFormation for the role that the preceding template creates.

As you continue to develop your stack, you will need to repeat the steps in the Use Access Analyzer to create a permissions policy and Deploy the CloudFormation role and policy sections of this post in order to make sure that the permissions policy remains up-to-date with the permissions required to deploy your stack.

Considerations

If your CloudFormation template uses custom resources that are backed by AWS Lambda, you should also run Access Analyzer on the IAM role that is created for the Lambda function in order to build an appropriate permissions policy for that role.

To generate a permissions policy for a Lambda service role

  1. Launch the stack in your development AWS account to create the Lamba function’s role.
  2. Make a note of the name of the role that was created.
  3. Destroy the stack in your development AWS account.
  4. Follow the instructions from the Use Access Analyzer to generate a fine-grained identity policy and Review the generated policy sections of this post to create the least-privilege policy for the role, substituting the Lambda function’s role name for CloudFormationDevExecRole.
  5. Build the resulting least-privilege policy into the CloudFormation template as the Lambda function’s permission policy.

Conclusion

IAM Access Analyzer helps generate fine-grained identity policies that you can use to grant CloudFormation the permissions it needs to create, update, and delete resources in your stack. By granting CloudFormation only the necessary permissions, you can incorporate the principle of least privilege, developers can deploy their stacks in production using reduced permissions, and cloud administrators can create guardrails for developers in production settings.

For additional information on applying the principle of least privilege to AWS CloudFormation, see How to implement the principle of least privilege with CloudFormation StackSets.

If you have feedback about this blog post, submit comments in the Comments section below. You can also start a new thread on AWS Identity and Access Management re:Post to get answers from the community.

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Author

Joel Knight

Joel is a Senior Consultant, Infrastructure Architecture, with AWS and is based in Calgary, Canada. When not wrangling infrastructure-as-code templates, Joel likes to spend time with his family and dabble in home automation.

Mathangi Ramesh

Mathangi Ramesh

Mathangi is the product manager for AWS Identity and Access Management. She enjoys talking to customers and working with data to solve problems. Outside of work, Mathangi is a fitness enthusiast and a Bharatanatyam dancer. She holds an MBA degree from Carnegie Mellon University.

IAM Access Analyzer makes it simpler to author and validate role trust policies

Post Syndicated from Mathangi Ramesh original https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/security/iam-access-analyzer-makes-it-simpler-to-author-and-validate-role-trust-policies/

AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM) Access Analyzer provides many tools to help you set, verify, and refine permissions. One part of IAM Access Analyzer—policy validation—helps you author secure and functional policies that grant the intended permissions. Now, I’m excited to announce that AWS has updated the IAM console experience for role trust policies to make it simpler for you to author and validate the policy that controls who can assume a role. In this post, I’ll describe the new capabilities and show you how to use them as you author a role trust policy in the IAM console.

Overview of changes

A role trust policy is a JSON policy document in which you define the principals that you trust to assume the role. The principals that you can specify in the trust policy include users, roles, accounts, and services. The new IAM console experience provides the following features to help you set the right permissions in the trust policy:

  • An interactive policy editor prompts you to add the right policy elements, such as the principal and the allowed actions, and offers context-specific documentation.
  • As you author the policy, IAM Access Analyzer runs over 100 checks against your policy and highlights issues to fix. This includes new policy checks specific to role trust policies, such as a check to make sure that you’ve formatted your identity provider correctly. These new checks are also available through the IAM Access Analyzer policy validation API.
  • Before saving the policy, you can preview findings for the external access granted by your trust policy. This helps you review external access, such as access granted to a federated identity provider, and confirm that you grant only the intended access when you create the policy. This functionality was previously available through the APIs, but now it’s also available in the IAM console.

In the following sections, I’ll walk you through how to use these new features.

Example scenario

For the walkthrough, consider the following example, which is illustrated in Figure 1. You are a developer for Example Corp., and you are working on a web application. You want to grant the application hosted in one account—the ApplicationHost account—access to data in another account—the BusinessData account. To do this, you can use an IAM role in the BusinessData account to grant temporary access to the application through a role trust policy. You will grant a role in the ApplicationHost account—the PaymentApplication role—to access the BusinessData account through a role—the ApplicationAccess role. In this example, you create the ApplicationAccess role and grant cross-account permissions through the trust policy by using the new IAM console experience that helps you set the right permissions.

Figure 1: Visual explanation of the scenario

Figure 1: Visual explanation of the scenario

Create the role and grant permissions through a role trust policy with the policy editor

In this section, I will show you how to create a role trust policy for the ApplicationAccess role to grant the application access to the data in your account through the policy editor in the IAM console.

To create a role and grant access

  1. In the BusinessData account, open the IAM console, and in the left navigation pane, choose Roles.
  2. Choose Create role, and then select Custom trust policy, as shown in Figure 2.
    Figure 2: Select "Custom trust policy" when creating a role

    Figure 2: Select “Custom trust policy” when creating a role

  3. In the Custom trust policy section, for 1. Add actions for STS, select the actions that you need for your policy. For example, to add the action sts:AssumeRole, choose AssumeRole.
    Figure 3: JSON role trust policy

    Figure 3: JSON role trust policy

  4. For 2. Add a principal, choose Add to add a principal.
  5. In the Add principal box, for Principal type, select IAM roles. This populates the ARN field with the format of the role ARN that you need to add to the policy, as shown in Figure 4.
    Figure 4: Add a principal to your role trust policy

    Figure 4: Add a principal to your role trust policy

  6. Update the role ARN template with the actual account and role information, and then choose Add principal. In our example, the account is ApplicationHost with an AWS account number of 111122223333, and the role is PaymentApplication role. Therefore, the role ARN is arn:aws:iam:: 111122223333: role/PaymentApplication. Figure 5 shows the role trust policy with the action and principal added.
    Figure 5: Sample role trust policy

    Figure 5: Sample role trust policy

  7. (Optional) To add a condition, for 3. Add a condition, choose Add, and then complete the Add condition box according to your needs.

Author secure policies by reviewing policy validation findings

As you author the policy, you can see errors or warnings related to your policy in the policy validation window, which is located below the policy editor in the console. With this launch, policy validation in IAM Access Analyzer includes 13 new checks focused on the trust relationship for the role. The following are a few examples of these checks and how to address them:

  • Role trust policy unsupported wildcard in principal – you can’t use a * in your role trust policy.
  • Invalid federated principal syntax in role trust policy – you need to fix the format of the identity provider.
  • Missing action for condition key – you need to add the right action for a given condition, such as the sts:TagSession when there are session tag conditions.

For a complete list of checks, see Access Analyzer policy check reference.

To review and fix policy validation findings

  1. In the policy validation window, do the following:
    • Choose the Security tab to check if your policy is overly permissive.
    • Choose the Errors tab to review any errors associated with the policy.
    • Choose the Warnings tab to review if aspects of the policy don’t align with AWS best practices.
    • Choose the Suggestions tab to get recommendations on how to improve the quality of your policy.
    Figure 6: Policy validation window in IAM Access Analyzer with a finding for your policy

    Figure 6: Policy validation window in IAM Access Analyzer with a finding for your policy

  2. For each finding, choose Learn more to review the documentation associated with the finding and take steps to fix it. For example, Figure 6 shows the error Mismatched Action For Principal. To fix the error, remove the action sts:AssumeRoleWithWebIdentity.

Preview external access by reviewing cross-account access findings

IAM Access Analyzer also generates findings to help you assess if a policy grants access to external entities. You can review the findings before you create the policy to make sure that the policy grants only intended access. To preview the findings, you create an analyzer and then review the findings.

To preview findings for external access

  1. Below the policy editor, in the Preview external access section, choose Go to Access Analyzer, as shown in Figure 7.

    Note: IAM Access Analyzer is a regional service, and you can create a new analyzer in each AWS Region where you operate. In this situation, IAM Access Analyzer looks for an analyzer in the Region where you landed on the IAM console. If IAM Access Analyzer doesn’t find an analyzer there, it asks you to create an analyzer.

    Figure 7: Preview external access widget without an analyzer

    Figure 7: Preview external access widget without an analyzer

  2. On the Create analyzer page, do the following to create an analyzer:
    • For Name, enter a name for your analyzer.
    • For Zone of trust, select the correct account.
    • Choose Create analyzer.
    Figure 8: Create an analyzer to preview findings

    Figure 8: Create an analyzer to preview findings

  3. After you create the analyzer, navigate back to the role trust policy for your role to review the external access granted by this policy. The following figure shows that external access is granted to PaymentApplication.
    Figure 9: Preview finding

    Figure 9: Preview finding

  4. If the access is intended, you don’t need to take any action. In this example, I want the PaymentApplication role in the ApplicationHost account to assume the role that I’m creating.
  5. If the access is unintended, resolve the finding by updating the role ARN information.
  6. Select Next and grant the required IAM permissions for the role.
  7. Name the role ApplicationAccess, and then choose Save to save the role.

Now the application can use this role to access the BusinessData account.

Conclusion

By using the new IAM console experience for role trust policies, you can confidently author policies that grant the intended access. IAM Access Analyzer helps you in your least-privilege journey by evaluating the policy for potential issues to make it simpler for you to author secure policies. IAM Access Analyzer also helps you preview external access granted through the trust policy to help ensure that the granted access is intended. To learn more about how to preview IAM Access Analyzer cross-account findings, see Preview access in the documentation. To learn more about IAM Access Analyzer policy validation checks, see Access Analyzer policy validation. These features are also available through APIs.

If you have feedback about this post, submit comments in the Comments section below. If you have questions about this post, start a new thread at AWS IAM re:Post or contact AWS Support.

Mathangi Ramesh

Mathangi Ramesh

Mathangi is the product manager for AWS Identity and Access Management. She enjoys talking to customers and working with data to solve problems. Outside of work, Mathangi is a fitness enthusiast and a Bharatanatyam dancer. She holds an MBA degree from Carnegie Mellon University.

Use IAM Access Analyzer to generate IAM policies based on access activity found in your organization trail

Post Syndicated from Mathangi Ramesh original https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/security/use-iam-access-analyzer-to-generate-iam-policies-based-on-access-activity-found-in-your-organization-trail/

In April 2021, AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM) Access Analyzer added policy generation to help you create fine-grained policies based on AWS CloudTrail activity stored within your account. Now, we’re extending policy generation to enable you to generate policies based on access activity stored in a designated account. For example, you can use AWS Organizations to define a uniform event logging strategy for your organization and store all CloudTrail logs in your management account to streamline governance activities. You can use Access Analyzer to review access activity stored in your designated account and generate a fine-grained IAM policy in your member accounts. This helps you to create policies that provide only the required permissions for your workloads.

Customers that use a multi-account strategy consolidate all access activity information in a designated account to simplify monitoring activities. By using AWS Organizations, you can create a trail that will log events for all Amazon Web Services (AWS) accounts into a single management account to help streamline governance activities. This is sometimes referred to as an organization trail. You can learn more from Creating a trail for an organization. With this launch, you can use Access Analyzer to generate fine-grained policies in your member account and grant just the required permissions to your IAM roles and users based on access activity stored in your organization trail.

When you request a policy, Access Analyzer analyzes your activity in CloudTrail logs and generates a policy based on that activity. The generated policy grants only the required permissions for your workloads and makes it easier for you to implement least privilege permissions. In this blog post, I’ll explain how to set up the permissions for Access Analyzer to access your organization trail and analyze activity to generate a policy. To generate a policy in your member account, you need to grant Access Analyzer limited cross-account access to access the Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) bucket where logs are stored and review access activity.

Generate a policy for a role based on its access activity in the organization trail

In this example, you will set fine-grained permissions for a role used in a development account. The example assumes that your company uses Organizations and maintains an organization trail that logs all events for all AWS accounts in the organization. The logs are stored in an S3 bucket in the management account. You can use Access Analyzer to generate a policy based on the actions required by the role. To use Access Analyzer, you must first update the permissions on the S3 bucket where the CloudTrail logs are stored, to grant access to Access Analyzer.

To grant permissions for Access Analyzer to access and review centrally stored logs and generate policies

  1. Sign in to the AWS Management Console using your management account and go to S3 settings.
  2. Select the bucket where the logs from the organization trail are stored.
  3. Change object ownership to bucket owner preferred. To generate a policy, all of the objects in the bucket must be owned by the bucket owner.
  4. Update the bucket policy to grant cross-account access to Access Analyzer by adding the following statement to the bucket policy. This grants Access Analyzer limited access to the CloudTrail data. Replace the <organization-bucket-name>, and <organization-id> with your values and then save the policy.
    {
        "Version": "2012-10-17",
        "Statement": 
        [
        {
            "Sid": "PolicyGenerationPermissions",
            "Effect": "Allow",
            "Principal": {
                "AWS": "*"
            },
            "Action": [
                "s3:GetObject",
                "s3:ListBucket"
            ],
            "Resource": [
                "arn:aws:s3:::<organization-bucket-name>",
                "arn:aws:s3:::my-organization-bucket/AWSLogs/o-exampleorgid/${aws:PrincipalAccount}/*
    "
            ],
            "Condition": {
    "StringEquals":{
    "aws:PrincipalOrgID":"<organization-id>"
    },
    
                "StringLike": {"aws:PrincipalArn":"arn:aws:iam::${aws:PrincipalAccount}:role/service-role/AccessAnalyzerMonitorServiceRole*"            }
            }
        }
        ]
    }
    

By using the preceding statement, you’re allowing listbucket and getobject for the bucket my-organization-bucket-name if the role accessing it belongs to an account in your Organizations and has a name that starts with AccessAnalyzerMonitorServiceRole. Using aws:PrincipalAccount in the resource section of the statement allows the role to retrieve only the CloudTrail logs belonging to its own account. If you are encrypting your logs, update your AWS Key Management Service (AWS KMS) key policy to grant Access Analyzer access to use your key.

Now that you’ve set the required permissions, you can use the development account and the following steps to generate a policy.

To generate a policy in the AWS Management Console

  1. Use your development account to open the IAM Console, and then in the navigation pane choose Roles.
  2. Select a role to analyze. This example uses AWS_Test_Role.
  3. Under Generate policy based on CloudTrail events, choose Generate policy, as shown in Figure 1.
     
    Figure 1: Generate policy from the role detail page

    Figure 1: Generate policy from the role detail page

  4. In the Generate policy page, select the time window for which IAM Access Analyzer will review the CloudTrail logs to create the policy. In this example, specific dates are chosen, as shown in Figure 2.
     
    Figure 2: Specify the time period

    Figure 2: Specify the time period

  5. Under CloudTrail access, select the organization trail you want to use as shown in Figure 3.

    Note: If you’re using this feature for the first time: select create a new service role, and then choose Generate policy.

    This example uses an existing service role “AccessAnalyzerMonitorServiceRole_MBYF6V8AIK.”
     

    Figure 3: CloudTrail access

    Figure 3: CloudTrail access

  6. After the policy is ready, you’ll see a notification on the role page. To review the permissions, choose View generated policy, as shown in Figure 4.
     
    Figure 4: Policy generation progress

    Figure 4: Policy generation progress

After the policy is generated, you can see a summary of the services and associated actions in the generated policy. You can customize it by reviewing the services used and selecting additional required actions from the drop down. To refine permissions further, you can replace the resource-level placeholders in the policies to restrict permissions to just the required access. You can learn more about granting fine-grained permissions and creating the policy as described in this blog post.

Conclusion

Access Analyzer makes it easier to grant fine-grained permissions to your IAM roles and users by generating IAM policies based on the CloudTrail activity centrally stored in a designated account such as your AWS Organizations management accounts. To learn more about how to generate a policy, see Generate policies based on access activity in the IAM User Guide.

If you have feedback about this blog post, submit comments in the Comments section below. If you have questions about this blog post, start a new thread on the IAM forum or contact AWS Support.

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Mathangi Ramesh

Mathangi Ramesh

Mathangi is the product manager for AWS Identity and Access Management. She enjoys talking to customers and working with data to solve problems. Outside of work, Mathangi is a fitness enthusiast and a Bharatanatyam dancer. She holds an MBA degree from Carnegie Mellon University.

New! Streamline existing IAM Access Analyzer findings using archive rules

Post Syndicated from Andrea Nedic original https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/security/new-streamline-existing-iam-access-analyzer-findings-using-archive-rules/

AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM) Access Analyzer generates comprehensive findings to help you identify resources that grant public and cross-account access. Now, you can also apply archive rules to existing findings, so you can better manage findings and focus on the findings that need your attention most.

You can think of archive rules as similar to email rules. You define email rules to automatically organize emails. With IAM Access Analyzer, you can define archive rules to automatically mark findings as intended access. Now, those rules can apply to existing as well as new IAM Access Analyzer findings. This helps you focus on findings for potential unintended access to your resources. You can then easily track and resolve these findings by reducing access, helping you to work towards least privilege.

In this post, first I give a brief overview of IAM Access Analyzer. Then I show you an example of how to create an archive rule to automatically archive findings for intended access. Finally, I show you how to update an archive rule to mark existing active findings as intended.

IAM Access Analyzer overview

IAM Access Analyzer helps you determine which resources can be accessed publicly or from other accounts or organizations. IAM Access Analyzer determines this by mathematically analyzing access control policies attached to resources. This form of analysis—called automated reasoning—applies logic and mathematical inference to determine all possible access paths allowed by a resource policy. This is how IAM Access Analyzer uses provable security to deliver comprehensive findings for potential unintended bucket access. You can enable IAM Access Analyzer in the IAM console by creating an analyzer for an account or an organization. Once you’ve created your analyzer, you can review findings for resources that can be accessed publicly or from other AWS accounts or organizations.

Create an archive rule to automatically archive findings for intended access

When you review findings and discover common patterns for intended access, you can create archive rules to automatically archive those findings. This helps you focus on findings for unintended access to your resources, just like email rules help streamline your inbox.

To create an archive rule

In the IAM console, choose Archive rules under Access Analyzer. Then, choose Create archive rule to display the Create archive rule page shown in Figure 1. There, you find the option to name the rule or use the name generated by default. In the Rule section, you define criteria to match properties of findings you want to archive. Just like email rules, you can add multiple criteria to the archive rule. You can define each criterion by selecting a finding property, an operator, and a value. To help ensure a rule doesn’t archive findings for public access, the criterion Public access is false is suggested by default.
 

Figure 1: IAM Access Analyzer create archive rule page where you add criteria to create a new archive rule

Figure 1: IAM Access Analyzer create archive rule page where you add criteria to create a new archive rule

For example, I have a security audit role external to my account that I expect to have access to resources in my account. To mark that access as intended, I create a rule to archive all findings for Amazon S3 buckets in my account that can be accessed by the security audit role outside of the account. To do this, I include two criteria: Resource type matches S3 bucket, and the AWS Account value matches the security audit role ARN. Once I add these criteria, the Results section displays the list of existing active findings the archive rule matches, as shown in Figure 2.
 

Figure 2: A rule to archive all findings for S3 buckets in an account that can be accessed by the audit role outside of the account, with matching findings displayed

Figure 2: A rule to archive all findings for S3 buckets in an account that can be accessed by the audit role outside of the account, with matching findings displayed

When you’re done adding criteria for your archive rule, select Create and archive active findings to archive new and existing findings based on the rule criteria. Alternatively, you can choose Create rule to create the rule for new findings only. In the preceding example, I chose Create and archive active findings to archive all findings—existing and new—that match the criteria.

Update an archive rule to mark existing findings as intended

You can also update an archive rule to archive existing findings retroactively and streamline your findings. To edit an archive rule, choose Archive rules under Access Analyzer, then select an existing rule and choose Edit. In the Edit archive rule page, update the archive rule criteria and review the list of existing active findings the archive rule applies to. When you save the archive rule, you can apply it retroactively to existing findings by choosing Save and archive active findings as shown in Figure 3. Otherwise, you can choose Save rule to update the rule and apply it to new findings only.

Note: You can also use the new IAM Access Analyzer API operation ApplyArchiveRule to retroactively apply an archive rule to existing findings that meet the archive rule criteria.

 

Figure 3: IAM Access Analyzer edit archive rule page where you can apply the rule retroactively to existing findings by choosing Save and archive active findings

Figure 3: IAM Access Analyzer edit archive rule page where you can apply the rule retroactively to existing findings by choosing Save and archive active findings

Get started

To turn on IAM Access Analyzer at no additional cost, open the IAM console. IAM Access Analyzer is available at no additional cost in the IAM console and through APIs in all commercial AWS Regions, AWS China Regions, and AWS GovCloud (US). To learn more about IAM Access Analyzer and which resources it supports, visit the feature page.

If you have feedback about this post, submit comments in the Comments section below. If you have questions about this post, start a new thread on the AWS IAM forum or contact AWS Support.

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Author

Andrea Nedic

Andrea is a Sr. Tech Product Manager for AWS Identity and Access Management. She enjoys hearing from customers about how they build on AWS. Outside of work, Andrea likes to ski, dance, and be outdoors. She holds a PhD from Princeton University.