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Updated on July 1, 2021

Authentication in Pega Platform ensures that only users and systems whose identity has been verified can access your applications. Authentication in Pega Platform includes user logins, platform requests to external services, and external service requests to the platform. You can also authenticate by using an external identity provider.

User logins

In a browser, a user logs in to a Pega Platform application, or a developer logs in to Dev Studio to make changes to an application. Authentication services verify these user credentials.

For more information, seeAuthentication services.

The following table lists the protocols for user logins that Pega Platform supports.

Authentication typeProtocol
SAML 2.0An external identity provider that supports the SAML 2.0 protocol, such as Microsoft Active Directory

For more information, see Web single sign-on (SSO) with SAML 2.0.

OpenID ConnectAn external identity provider that supports the OpenID Connect (OIDC) protocol
Basic credentialsA user ID and password that are stored in the Pega Platform database or in another internal or external data source
Token credentialsA token that is validated by an external identity provider or by the OAuth 2.0 authorization layer in Pega Platform (often used in offline mobile applications)
AnonymousNo verification until partway through a session

For example, an unauthenticated user can add items to a shopping cart, and enter credentials when they check out.

You can configure a custom authentication service to use information that is stored within the identity provider to determine the user roles and privileges in Pega Platform.

Make your application more secure by using simple selections in the authentication service rule form to implement policies such as multi-factor authentication. For example, each time a user logs in, the application can send an authentication code to the user by email. To log in, the user enters that code in addition to a password.

You can use authentication services (including SAML 2.0, OpenID Connect, or token credentials) to implement single sign-on (SSO) solutions. SSO solutions limit repetitive requests for credentials when users access a variety of systems or applications.

For complete control over the login process, you can define custom authentication services.

Pega Platform connectors Requests to external services from Pega Platform connectors

To invoke an external REST service to get information from an external system or application, a Pega Platform application must authenticate to that service. This type of authentication uses an authentication profile and OAuth provider data instances. The supported forms of authentication include basic credentials, NT LAN Manager credentials (NTLM), OAuth 1.0, and OAuth 2.0.

For more information, see:

External requests for execution to Pega Platform services

An external system or application can invoke a REST service that is defined in Pega Platform or within a Pega Platform application to get case information. This type of authentication uses a service type and service package instances. Supported forms of authentication include basic credentials, OAuth 2.0, and custom authentication.

For more information, see:

Session management

After the initial authentication, session management features ensure that requests for access to the system (and its data) continue to come from authenticated requestors. In Pega Platform, you can define various policies to control session time-outs, automatically terminate sessions, deactivate operators after successive days of inactivity, run cross-origin resource sharing (CORS), detect cross-site request forgery (CSRF), and so on.

  • Creating an authentication service

    To override or extend the default authentication process, create an authentication service. By creating an authentication service, you implement more specialized authentication requirements than the default, for example, to use pre-authentication and post-authentication activities.

  • Controlling access to and from external applications

    You can configure Pega Platform to access external systems to retrieve data and perform application processing. Similarly, you can allow external systems to access services in Pega Platform. By communicating with external systems, you can make use of functionality that has already been configured, and avoid the need to duplicate the same functions in multiple applications.

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