Ensure that the --basic-auth-file argument is not set (API Server)

Do not use basic authentication. Basic authentication uses plaintext credentials for authentication. Currently, the basic authentication credentials last indefinitely, and the password cannot be changed without restarting API server. The basic authentication is currently supported for convenience. Hence, basic authentication should not be used.

Risk Level: High
Cloud Entity: Pods
CloudGuard Rule ID: D9.K8S.IAM.04
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 'basic-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 --basic-auth-file=<filename>


  1. https://kubernetes.io/docs/admin/kube-apiserver/
  2. https://kubernetes.io/docs/admin/authentication/#static-password-file


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 v1.4.0
  • 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