Channel security


  • Access to Zato services is mediated through channels, i.e. it is channels that receive incoming requests
  • Channels represent a particular combination of technology and configuration specific to it, including authentication. For instance, a REST channel will contain information about what URL path or HTTP method to use but it will also include information what credentials are needed to invoke that particular channel.
  • A single security definition may be assigned to multiple channels
  • Changes to channels or to security definitions do not require any restarts

Using security definitions

  • Before it can be assigned to a channel, a security definition needs to be created
  • All types of security definitions can be found in Dashboard, in the Security menu option
  • Not all security types are applicable to all channel types, e.g. Basic Auth, JWT or Vault can be used with REST or JSON-RPC but they are not applicable to channels such as AMQP or other types
  • To assign a security definition to a channel, create a security definition in Dashboard and then create or edit a channel of the expected type, as below:


  • Working in Dashboard is quick and convenient and, for automation purposes, all Zato objects can be also exported to YAML or JSON using a tool called enmasse
  • With enmasse, it is possible to store configuration in a repository and import it from command line in an automated manner
  • In this approach, Dashboard is used only initially during development but any actual automated work makes use of enmasse for repeatable builds
  • Refer to the chapter on enmasse

Rate limiting

  • A rate limit can be assigned to a specific channel, to its service, or to a security definition
  • A single limit may specify IP addresses or IP ranges that the limit applies to, e.g. a channel may limit external users from specific IP ranges to 10k requests per day but requests from localhost may be unlimited
  • Refer to this article on rate limiting for details


  • Channels can be secured with SSL/TLS, including client certificates and certificates pinning
  • Refer to the chapter on SSL/TLS for details