Ensure that the --token-auth-file parameter is not set (API Server)

Do not use token based authentication. The token-based authentication utilizes static tokens to authenticate requests to the apiserver. The tokens are stored in clear-text in a file on the apiserver, and cannot be revoked or rotated without restarting the apiserver. Hence, do not use static token-based authentication.

Risk Level: High
Cloud Entity: Pods
CloudGuard Rule ID: D9.K8S.CRY.05
Covered by Spectral: Yes
Category: Compute


KubernetesPod where labels contain [value='kube-apiserver'] and namespace = 'kube-system' should have spec.containers with [parsedArgs contain-none [key like 'token-auth-file']]


Follow the documentation and configure alternate mechanisms for authentication. Then,
edit the API server pod specification file $apiserverconf
on the master node and remove the --token-auth-file=<filename>


Pods are the smallest deployable units of computing that can be created and managed in Kubernetes.A Pod is a group of one or more containers (such as Docker containers), with shared storage/network, and a specification for how to run the containers.

Compliance Frameworks

  • CIS Kubernetes Benchmark v1.20
  • CIS Kubernetes Benchmark v1.23
  • CIS Kubernetes Benchmark v1.24
  • CIS Kubernetes Benchmark v1.4.0
  • CIS Kubernetes Benchmark v1.5.1
  • CIS Kubernetes Benchmark v1.6.1
  • Kubernetes NIST.SP.800-190
  • Kubernetes v.1.13 CloudGuard Best Practices
  • Kubernetes v.1.14 CloudGuard Best Practices