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Brigade Docs

Securing Brigade

The execution of Brigade scripts involves dynamically creating (and destroying) a number of Kubernetes objects, including pods, secrets, and persistent volume claims. For that reason, it is prudent to configure security.

  • Isolate Brigade in a namespace: It is best to run Brigade in its own namespace. For example, when installing Brigade via its Helm chart, do helm install --namespace brigade ....
  • Multiple tenants in Brigade: Brigade supports multiple projects per Brigade server instance, but it must be mentioned that users within Brigade can usually see (read) all projects on that instance, though they might not necessarily have the role necessary to write to them. If this presents a concern, each tenant should have its own Brigade instance. For more info, see the Authentication document.
  • Events should hold no sensitive data: Because Brigade routes events to interested parties (projects) based on a subscription model, events should never contain secrets/sensitive information. Always assume that anyone in your cluster could be subscribed to any event that a gateway creates.

API Server Security

If Brigade’s API server will be exposed to the internet either via a service of type LoadBalancer having a public IP or via an ingress controller, care should be taken to secure inbound communication. Minimally, TLS should be enabled and SSL certificates should not be self-signed.

For more details on deploying Brigade securely, see the Deployment doc.

How RBAC Is Configured

Brigade requires and assumes that the underlying Kubernetes cluster is RBAC-enabled. Without RBAC, the risk that user-defined workloads may accidentally or maliciously manipulate the Kubernetes cluster itself is high, so such a configuration is strictly not supported.

The Helm chart for Brigade creates numerous RBAC-related resources that are necessary for Brigade to function properly. These include ServiceAccounts and applicable ClusterRoleBindings for each of Brigade’s components (API Server, Observer, Scheduler, etc.) By default, the ClusterRoles referenced by those ClusterRoleBindings are also created. If more than one instance of Brigade is being installed in a given cluster, only the first to be installed must include these ClusterRoles. For the installation of subsequent Brigade instances in the same cluster, creation of those ClusterRoles can be disabled if their pre-existence proves problematic. To disable the creation of ClusterRoles, set rbac.installGlobalResources to false at the time of installation. Disabling this does not disable RBAC, but merely indicates the pre-existence of cluster-scoped resources.

Brigade itself manages ServiceAccounts and other RBAC-related resources for each Brigade project in each project’s own namespace.

Project Security

Brigade is opinionated about configuring projects and storing data like credentials. Sensitive information relevant to a project should be set as Secrets on that project. In turn, project secrets are stored in a Kubernetes secret, so care should be taken in preventing unauthorized access to these resources.

  • Out-of-the-box, credentials should be stored as project secrets
  • A project’s credentials are accessible to any script running in that project, regardless of event.
  • For SSH-based Git clones, the SSH key should be stored as a project secret. The key for this secret must be gitSSHKey.

Script Security

Brigade scripts can indirectly create pods, secrets, and persistent volume claims. Brigade does not evaluate the security of the containers that a pod runs. Consequently, it is best to avoid using untrusted containers in Brigade scripts. Likewise, it is not recommended to inject secrets into a container without first auditing the container.

Gateway Security

In Brigade, a gateway is any service that translates some external prompt (webhook, 3rd party API, cron trigger, etc.) into a Brigade event.

Gateways are the most likely service to have an external network connection. We suggest the following features of a gateway:

  • A gateway should use appropriate network-level encryption
  • A gateway should implement authentication/authorization with the upstream service wherever appropriate.
    • In most cases, auth requirements should not be passed on to other elements of Brigade.
    • The exception is alternative VCS implementations, where the git-sidecar may be replaced by another sidecar.

See more info in the Gateways doc. There you’ll find links to official Brigade gateways and guidance for writing your own.