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Security in FastAPI: Best practices to protect your application (Part I)

When it comes to web development, security is a major concern for all developers. With cyber-attacks and online threats on the rise, it’s essential to implement robust security measures to protect web applications. In this article, we’ll explore best practices for securing a FastAPI application, focusing on authentication, authorization, session management and protection against common attacks.

Authentication and authorization :

Authentication and authorization are two fundamental aspects of web application security. Authentication verifies a user’s identity, while authorization controls the actions a user is authorized to perform.

FastAPI offers several options for managing authentication and authorization within an application. One of the most common approaches is the use of JSON Web Tokens (JWTs). JWTs are cryptographically secure tokens that can be used to represent a user’s authentication information in a compact, secure way.

Here’s an example of code illustrating the use of JWT for FastAPI authentication with also HTTP Basic :

Create your project folder, create your virtual environment (env) and install these packages :

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Now create a file with your choosing name for example, copy and paste this code or write it for more understanding

import jwt
import secrets
import bcrypt
from fastapi import FastAPI, Depends, HTTPException, status
from import get_redoc_html, get_swagger_ui_html
from fastapi.openapi.utils import get_openapi
from import HTTPBasic, HTTPBasicCredentials, HTTPBearer
from pydantic import BaseModel
from passlib.context import CryptContext
from datetime import datetime, timedelta

# Declaration of the HTTP Basic Authentication method
security = HTTPBasic()

# Declaration of the Bearer schema for token-based authentication
protocol = HTTPBearer(auto_error=False, scheme_name="Bearer")

# Initialization of the FastAPI application
app = FastAPI(
    title="API SECURITY TEST",
    description='This is SECURITY TEST API',

# Function to get the current username (It's a basic http login)
def get_current_username(credentials: HTTPBasicCredentials = Depends(security)):
    correct_username = secrets.compare_digest(credentials.username, "securityapi")
    correct_password = secrets.compare_digest(credentials.password, "testpassword")
    if not (correct_username and correct_password):
        raise HTTPException(
            detail="Incorrect username or password",
            headers={"WWW-Authenticate": "Basic"},
    return credentials.username

# Route to get Swagger documentation
@app.get("/docs", include_in_schema=False)
async def get_swagger_documentation(username: str = Depends(get_current_username)):
    return get_swagger_ui_html(openapi_url="/openapi.json", title="docs")

# Route to get Redoc documentation
@app.get("/redoc", include_in_schema=False)
async def get_redoc_documentation(username: str = Depends(get_current_username)):
    return get_redoc_html(openapi_url="/openapi.json", title="docs")

# Route to get the OpenAPI JSON schema
@app.get("/openapi.json", include_in_schema=False)
async def openapi(username: str = Depends(get_current_username)):
    return get_openapi(title=app.title, version=app.version, routes=app.routes, description=app.description)

# Configuration of encryption parameters
SECRET_KEY = "your-secret-key"

# Example of a registered user (for testing)
fake_users_db = {
    "user": {
        "username": "user",
        "full_name": "Test User",
        "email": "",
        "hashed_password": "$2b$12$vJGN.aAs5mV.KWC2Czt3PujQHXy.SVeC1UIINSGBLD0vmTfVuiGgC",  # Password: testpassword
        "disabled": False,

# Class to represent access token data
class Token(BaseModel):
    access_token: str
    token_type: str

# Class to represent user data
class User(BaseModel):
    username: str
    email: str
    full_name: str

# Class to represent user data stored in the database
class UserInDB(User):
    hashed_password: str

# Class to represent user login data
class UserInLogin(BaseModel):
    username: str
    password: str

# Object for password encryption and hashing
pwd_context = CryptContext(schemes=["bcrypt"], deprecated="auto")

# Function to verify if the password is correct
def verify_password(plain_password: str, hashed_password: str) -> bool:
    return bcrypt.checkpw(plain_password.encode("utf-8"), hashed_password.encode("utf-8"))

# Function to hash the password
def get_password_hash(password: str) -> str:
    salt = bcrypt.gensalt()
    return (bcrypt.hashpw(password.encode('utf-8'), salt)).decode('utf-8')

# Function to generate a JWT access token
def create_access_token(data: dict, expires_delta: timedelta):
    to_encode = data.copy()
    expire = datetime.utcnow() + expires_delta
    to_encode.update({"exp": expire})
    encoded_jwt = jwt.encode(to_encode, SECRET_KEY, algorithm=ALGORITHM)
    return encoded_jwt

# Function to authenticate the user
def authenticate_user(fake_db, username: str, password: str):
    user = fake_db.get(username)
    if not user or not verify_password(password, user.get("hashed_password")):
        return False
    return user

# Function to get the current user
async def get_current_user(token: any = Depends(protocol)):
    credentials_exception = HTTPException(
        detail="Unable to validate credentials",
        headers={"WWW-Authenticate": "Bearer"},
        payload = jwt.decode(token.credentials, SECRET_KEY, algorithms=[ALGORITHM])
        username: str = payload.get("sub")
        if username is None:
            raise credentials_exception
    except Exception as e:
        raise credentials_exception
    return username

# Route for authentication and access token generation"/login", response_model=Token)
async def login_for_access_token(username: str, password: str):
    user = authenticate_user(fake_users_db, username, password)
    if not user:
        raise HTTPException(status_code=401, detail="Incorrect username or password")
    access_token_expires = timedelta(minutes=ACCESS_TOKEN_EXPIRE_MINUTES)
    access_token = create_access_token(data={"sub": user["username"]}, expires_delta=access_token_expires)
    return {"access_token": access_token, "token_type": "Bearer"}

# Route for current user information
@app.get("/users/me/", response_model=User)
async def read_users_me(current_user: str = Depends(get_current_user)):
    user = fake_users_db.get(current_user)
    return user
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Here is this the final result after launching the api with command : uvicorn main:app — reload

HTTP Basic Login

API Documentation

In this example, we used the Pydantic library to define data models, the Passlib library for password encryption, and the PyJWT library for JWT manipulation. We also used the HTTPBasic, HTTPBasicCredentials and HTTPBearer objects to manage authentication in FastAPI.

User authentication is verified by comparing hashed passwords stored in a dummy database with passwords supplied by users. If the authentication information is valid, a JWT access token is generated and returned to the user.

Using this authentication mechanism, you can secure your application’s routes simply by adding the Depends(get_current_user) decorator to your endpoints.

In the second part of this article, we’ll look at session management and protection against common attacks. Stay tuned!

Conclusion :
In this article, we’ve explored best practices for securing a FastAPI application by implementing authentication using JSON Web Tokens (JWT). By following these security practices, you can protect your application against unauthorized access and data breaches. In the next part of this article, we’ll look at session management and protection against common attacks.

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