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Role Based Access Control for Slack-Bolt applications

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Role Based Access Control for Slack-Bolt Apps

Role Based Access Control (RBAC) is a term applied to limiting the authorization for a specific operation based on the association of a User to a "role". For example:

As an application developer, I want to ensure that only specific Users in a
given User-Group are allowed to execute the "bounce port" command.

The Slack Platform does not natively support the concept of "User Groups", but it does support the standard protcol: System for Cross-domain Identity Management (SCIM). A method for implemeting RBAC in Slack can be accomlished using the Slack SCIM API feature. For example:

As an IT administrator of Okta, I will create SCIM groups that will designate
the specific RBAC User-Groups I want to use in Slack.

This slack-scim-rbac repository provides a Slack-Bolt middleware class.

As a developer using the SCIM protocol, you must obtain a SCIM Token from your Slack administrator and export the environment variable SLACK_SCIM_TOKEN.

The following code snippet is take from the example. In this example the User that entered the "bounce port" message must be a member of the SCIM group "ChatOps-foo". If they are not, then an error message is reported to the User.

from slack_scim_rbac.middleware import AsyncSlackScimRBAC

    re.compile("bounce port", re.I),
async def app_bounce_port(request: BoltRequest, context: BoltContext, say: Say):
    await say(f"bouncing port for you <@{context.user_id}> ... standby")

Customizing the Error Response

As a developer you will want to customize the error response to the User. There are two ways to do this. The first way is to provide an error_response function to middleware addition. For example this code will trigger a Modal when the User triggers the /rbacker command that contains the text "bounce port" when they are not part of the "ChatOps-nofuzz" SCIM group.

async def is_bounce_port_command(command: dict):
    return "bounce port" in command["text"]

async def modal_no_you_cant(client: AsyncWebClient, body: dict, context: AsyncBoltContext):
    msg = f"Nope! Sorry <@{context.user_id}> but you cannot do that!"

    view = View(title="Permission Denied!", type="modal", close="Bummer")
    view.blocks = [SectionBlock(text=MarkdownTextObject(text=msg))]
    await client.views_open(trigger_id=body["trigger_id"], view=view)

async def slash_rbacker_bounce_port(ack: Ack, say: Say, context: Context):
    await ack()
    await say(
        f"Already then, <@{context.user_id}>, let's get to bouncing that port for ya!"

The other approach is to sub-class the AsyncSlackScimRBAC class and overriding the error_response method.

Customizing the RBAC Validation Process

By default the validate process checks the Slack User groups (name) membership in any of the required group names. You can override this behavior (for example if you have a default "admin" group that you want to always allow but not require in each listener declaration) by sub-classing AsyncSlackScimRBAC and overriding the is_member method.


This slack-scim-rbac repository implements middleware for asyncio mode only. A sync implementation should be straightforward, but has not been done since it is not what I needed. If you do, please open an issue (or a PR). Thanks!


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