Role-Based Access Controls

Explanation of Ghostwriter's role-based access controls

In Ghostwriter <= v3.x, the role-based access controls described on this page apply only to the GraphQL API. In those older versions, user privileges are equivalent to every account having the manager role.


User roles are the primary authorization mechanism. There are three user roles:

  • User

  • Manager

  • Admin

A Ghostwriter administrator sets a user's role in the admin panel. All accounts are assigned the user role by default.

If you look in the Hasura GraphQL console, you will also see a public role. Only Hasura uses this role. An unauthenticated request (i.e., any request that lacks a valid JWT in a request's Authorization header) is considered to have the public role. Specific webhook endpoints (e.g., login) are accessible to this role.

The roles carry the following privileges:

User Role Privileges

The user role can only access client and project data if they:

  • have been assigned to the project

  • have been invited to access the client

  • have been invited to access the project

Otherwise, this role has the standard permissions you might expect. They can edit or delete their comments, update their profiles, and view the shared information in the various libraries (e.g., findings, domains).

When viewing the project history for a domain, an account with the user role will only see project details if they can access the project or the related client.

Augmenting User Permission

An admin can augment user permissions in the admin console. By default, the user role cannot edit, update, or delete entries in the Findings or Observation libraries.

Manager Role Privileges

The manager role can view all clients and projects. The role can also:

  • invite others to access client data

  • invite others to access project data

  • assign others to a project

  • edit report templates flagged as protected

If an account is flagged as a Django Superuser that account will automatically inherit the manager role.

Client and project invitations must be created via the admin panel (/admin/rolodex/clientinvite/ and /admin/rolodex/projecttinvite/). Access to the admin panel requires an account with admin role.

A future release will add an option to invite users from the client and project pages for the manager role.

Admin Role Privileges

The admin role is only used by the GraphQL API. This role has complete access to everything available via the API. This role can create and manage users and modify fields not exposed to other roles.

Use great care when assigning this role to an account. In general, a user should only ever be a manager or a user.

Last updated