Policy Decision Point

The Policy Decision Point is responsible to evaluate if users and systems is authorized to perform the requested operation on a resource.

The Policy Decision Point is implemented in the access control component that is deployed to Altinn Platform.

The Policy Decision Point follow eXtensible Access Control Markup Language (XACML) Version 3.0.

This mean that the rules are defined in XACML Policies files and PDP evalutes request based on the rules.

The PDP evaluates the Context Request based on standard XACML 3.0 behaviour. There is no specific Altinn behaviour.

Policy Decision Point exposes a method that authorize the decision request.

PDP uses the configured Context Handler to enrich the decision request with attributes about the subject, resource and environment.

If instanceID or dataID is used as Resource ID PDP will use the Context Handler to identifiy the correct appId, the instance workflow state and the reporteId for the existing resource.

For request for non existing instances the appId will be used and the reportee is a required input.

PDP flow

The diagram below show the detailed flow.

PDP flow
PDP flow

Flow explained

  1. Decision Request is sent to context handler for enriching
  2. Context handler call PIP for resource attributes
  3. Context handler call PIP for subject attributes
  4. PRP Identifies the correct policy based on resource attributes in enriched decision request
  5. PDP identifyes matching rules
  6. PDP checks if there is any matching rules and returnes interderminate if not
  7. Matches the rules with subject attributes
  8. Verify match and return indeterminate if not
  9. Evaluate any conditions in policy
  10. If condiation does not match return indterminate
  11. Add any obligations to the result
  12. Return the decsion result

XACML 3.0 Conformance

The PDP tries to follow XACML 3.0 standard and have implemented some conformance tests. The goal is to fully implement all conformance test.

There exist no official XACML 3.0 conformance test but AT&T research made som available for OASIS in this thread.

See our tests here.

Testdata for conformance tests is found here, and official description of tests here.

See Github 2818 for status on conformance test coverage

Implementation and construction details

Details about the implementation of PDP is found under construction components for PDP.