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Index management security

Using the security plugin with index management lets you limit non-admin users to certain actions. For example, you might want to set up your security such that a group of users can only read ISM policies, while others can create, delete, or change policies.

All index management data are protected as system indices, and only a super admin or an admin with a Transport Layer Security (TLS) certificate can access system indices. For more information, see System indices.

Basic permissions

The security plugin comes with one role that offers full access to index management: index_management_full_access. For a description of the role’s permissions, see Predefined roles.

With security enabled, users not only need the correct index management permissions, but they also need permissions to execute actions to involved indices. For example, if a user wants to use the REST API to attach a policy that executes a rollup job to an index named system-logs, they would need the permissions to attach a policy and execute a rollup job, as well as access to system-logs.

Finally, with the exceptions of Create Policy, Get Policy, and Delete Policy, users also need the indices:admin/opensearch/ism/managedindex permission to execute ISM APIs.

(Advanced) Limit access by backend role

You can use backend roles to configure fine-grained access to index management policies and actions. For example, users of different departments in an organization might view different policies depending on what roles and permissions they are assigned.

First, ensure your users have the appropriate backend roles. Backend roles usually come from an LDAP server or SAML provider. However, if you use the internal user database, you can use the REST API to add them manually.

Use the REST API to enable the following setting:

PUT _cluster/settings
  "transient": {
    "plugins.index_management.filter_by_backend_roles": "true"

With security enabled, only users who share at least one backend role can see and execute the policies and actions relevant to their roles.

For example, consider a scenario with three users: John and Jill, who have the backend role helpdesk_staff, and Jane, who has the backend role phone_operator. John wants to create a policy that performs a rollup job on an index named airline_data, so John would need a backend role that has permissions to access that index, create relevant policies, and execute relevant actions, and Jill would be able to access the same index, policy, and job. However, Jane cannot access or edit those resources or actions.