How to authenticate and authorize IoT Central REST API calls

The IoT Central REST API lets you develop client applications that integrate with IoT Central applications. Use the REST API to work with resources in your IoT Central application such as device templates, devices, jobs, users, and roles.

Every IoT Central REST API call requires an authorization header that IoT Central uses to determine the identity of the caller and the permissions that caller is granted within the application.

This article describes the types of token you can use in the authorization header, and how to get them.

Token types

To access an IoT Central application using the REST API, you can use an:

  • Azure Active Directory bearer token. A bearer token is associated with an Azure Active Directory user account or service principal. The token grants the caller the same permissions the user or service principal has in the IoT Central application.
  • IoT Central API token. An API token is associated with a role in your IoT Central application.

Use a bearer token associated with your user account while you're developing and testing automation and scripts that use the REST API. Use a bearer token that's associated with a service principal for production automation and scripts. Use a bearer token in preference to an API token to reduce the risk of leaks and problems when tokens expire.

To learn more about users and roles in IoT Central, see Manage users and roles in your IoT Central application.

Get a bearer token

To get a bearer token for your Azure Active Directory user account, use the following Azure CLI commands:

az login
az account get-access-token --resource https://apps.azureiotcentral.com

Important

The az login command is necessary even if you're using the Cloud Shell.

The JSON output from the previous command looks like the following example:

{
  "accessToken": "eyJ0eX...fNQ",
  "expiresOn": "2021-03-22 11:11:16.072222",
  "subscription": "{your subscription id}",
  "tenant": "{your tenant id}",
  "tokenType": "Bearer"
}

The bearer token is valid for approximately one hour, after which you need to create a new one.

To get a bearer token for a service principal, see Service principal authentication.

Get an API token

To get an API token, you can use the IoT Central UI or a REST API call. Administrators associated with the root organization and users assigned to the correct role can create API tokens.

In the IoT Central UI:

  1. Navigate to Permissions > API tokens.

  2. Click + New or Create an API token.

  3. Enter a name for the token and select a role and organization.

  4. Select Generate.

  5. IoT Central displays the token that looks like the following example:

    SharedAccessSignature sr=5782ed70...&sig=dvZZE...&skn=operator-token&se=1647948035850

    This screen is the only time you can see the API token, if you lose it you need to generate a new one.

An API token is valid for approximately one year. You can generate tokens for both built-in and custom roles in your IoT Central application. The organization you choose when you create the API token determines which devices the API has access to. Any API tokens created before you add any organizations to your application are associated with the root organization.

You can delete API tokens in the IoT Central UI if you need to revoke access.

Using the REST API:

  1. Use the REST API to retrieve a list of role IDs from your application:

    GET https://{your app subdomain}.azureiotcentral.com/api/roles?api-version=2022-05-31
    

    The response to this request looks like the following example:

    {
      "value": [
        {
          "displayName": "Administrator",
          "id": "ca310b8d-2f4a-44e0-a36e-957c202cd8d4"
        },
        {
          "displayName": "Operator",
          "id": "ae2c9854-393b-4f97-8c42-479d70ce626e"
        },
        {
          "displayName": "Builder",
          "id": "344138e9-8de4-4497-8c54-5237e96d6aaf"
        }
      ]
    }
    
  2. Use the REST API to create an API token for a role. For example, to create an API token called operator-token for the operator role:

    PUT https://{your app subdomain}.azureiotcentral.com/api/apiToken/operator-token?api-version=2022-05-31
    

    Request body:

    {
      "roles": [
        {
          "role": "ae2c9854-393b-4f97-8c42-479d70ce626e"
        }
      ]
    }
    

    The response to the previous command looks like the following JSON:

    {
      "expiry": "2022-03-22T12:01:27.889Z",
      "id": "operator-token",
      "roles": [
        {
          "role": "ae2c9854-393b-4f97-8c42-479d70ce626e"
        }
      ],
      "token": "SharedAccessSignature sr=e8a...&sig=jKY8W...&skn=operator-token&se=1647950487889"
    }
    

    This response is the only time you have access to the API token, if you lose it you need to generate a new one.

You can use the REST API to list and delete API tokens in an application.

Use a bearer token

To use a bearer token when you make a REST API call, your authorization header looks like the following example:

Authorization: Bearer eyJ0eX...fNQ

Use an API token

To use an API token when you make a REST API call, your authorization header looks like the following example:

Authorization: SharedAccessSignature sr=e8a...&sig=jKY8W...&skn=operator-token&se=1647950487889

Next steps

Now that you've learned how to authorize REST API calls, a suggested next step is to How to use the IoT Central REST API to query devices.