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Configure OAuth 2.0 Demonstrating Proof-of-Possession

This guide discusses how to create sender-constrained access tokens that are an application-level mechanism for preventing token replays at different endpoints.

Learning outcomes

  • Understand the purpose of Demonstrating Proof-of-Possession
  • Understand how to configure OAuth 2.0 Demonstrating Proof-of-Possession (DPoP) for your org and app

What you need


OAuth 2.0 Demonstrating Proof-of-Possession (DPoP) helps prevent unauthorized parties from using leaked or stolen access tokens. When you use DPoP, you create an application-level mechanism to sender-constrain both access and refresh tokens. This helps prevent token replays at different endpoints.

Note: The Okta DPoP feature is based on the current RFC (opens new window).

DPoP enables a client to prove possession of a public/private key pair by including a DPoP header in a /token endpoint request. The value of the DPoP header is a JSON Web Token (JWT) and is called a DPoP proof. This DPoP proof enables the authorization server to bind issued tokens to the public part of a client's key pair. Recipients of these tokens (such as an

) can then verify that binding, which provides assurance that the client presenting the token also possesses the private key.

OAuth 2.0 DPoP JWT flow

Configure DPoP

This section explains how to configure DPoP in your org, and then how to create a DPoP proof (JWT) to obtain a DPoP-bound access token. A JWT is a compact, URL-safe way to represent claims transferred between two parties. A common use case example for JWTs is to declare the scope of the access token.

Configure the app integration

Create or update an app to include the DPoP parameter.

Create an app

  1. Sign in to your Okta organization with your administrator account and go to Applications > Applications.
  2. Click Create App Integration.
  3. Select OIDC - OpenID Connect, and then Native Application.
  4. Name your application and scroll down to the bottom of the page and select Allow everyone in your organization to access.
  5. Click Save and then click Edit in the General Settings section of the page that appears.
  6. Select the Require Demonstrating Proof of Possession (DPoP) header in token requests checkbox for Proof of possession.
  7. Click Save.

Use the API

You can also use the Apps API to create or update an OAuth 2.0 client app and enable the DPoP parameter. Use the following parameters in the request:

  • response_types: This example uses the Authorization Code grant type, so code is the correct response type.
  • grant_types: This example uses authorization_code and refresh_token.
  • dpop_bound_access_tokens: This example uses true to indicate that the app accepts DPoP-bound access tokens.

Note: See the Request Body Schema (opens new window) section of the Applications API reference for more information on the new DPoP parameter.

In the POST (create the client app) or PUT (update the client app) request, add the DPoP parameter to settings.oauthClient:

  "label":"[Dev App] SPA Client",
  "settings": {
    "oauthClient": {
      "dpop_bound_access_tokens": true

Create a JSON Web Key

Create a JSON Web Key (opens new window) (JWK) for use with DPoP. A JWK is a cryptographic key or key pair expressed in JSON format. You use the generated public and private keys to sign the JSON Web Token (JWT) for use with DPoP in the next section.

Note: The JWK that's used for DPoP authentication is separate from the JWK used for client authentication.

Use your internal instance of a key pair generator to generate the public/private key pair for use with DPoP in a production org. See this key pair generator (opens new window) for an example.

Note: Use only asymmetric keys with DPoP. See Asymmetric Encryption: Definition, Architecture, Usage (opens new window).

For testing purposes only, you can use this simple JWK generator (opens new window) to generate a key pair. Follow these steps if you use the simple JWK generator:

  1. Select the following and then click Generate.

    • Key Use: Signature
    • Algorithm: RS256
    • Key ID: SHA-256
    • Show X.509: Yes
  2. Copy the Public Key, the Private Key (X.509 PEM Format), and the Public Key (X.509 PEM Format) for use in the next steps.

Create the JSON Web Token

Create a DPoP proof JWT (opens new window). A DPoP proof JWT includes a header and payload with claims, and then you sign the JWT with the private key from the previous section.

Use your internal instance to sign the JWT for a production org. See this JWT generator (opens new window) for an example of how to make and use JWTs in Node.js apps. For testing purposes only, you can use this JWT tool (opens new window) to build, sign, and decode JWTs. See Use the JWT tool.

Parameters and claims

Include the following required parameters in the JWT header:

  • typ: Type header. Declares that the encoded object is a JWT and meant for use with DPoP. This must be dpop+jwt.
  • alg: Algorithm. Indicates that the asymmetric algorithm is RS256 (RSA using SHA256). This algorithm uses a private key to sign the JWT and a public key to verify the signature. Must not be none or an identifier for a symmetric algorithm. This example uses RS256.
  • jwk: JSON Web Key. Include the public key (in JWK string format) that you create in the Create a JSON Web Key section. Okta uses this public key to verify the JWT signature. See the Application JSON Web Key Response properties (opens new window) for a description of the public key properties.

Include the following required claims in the JWT payload:

Use the JWT tool

Follow these steps if you use the JWT tool (opens new window). See the previous section for parameter and claim descriptions.

  1. Select RS256 as the Algorithm.
  2. Build the JWT header in the HEADER section. Include the public key from the public/private key pair generated in the previous section.
    "typ": "dpop+jwt",
    "alg": "RS256",
    "jwk": {
      "kty": "RSA",
      "e": "AQAB",
      "use": "sig",
      "kid": "XUl71vpgPXgxSTCYHbvbEHDrtj-adpVcxXH3TKjKe7w",
      "alg": "RS256",
      "n": "4LuWNeMa7.....zLvDWaJsF0"
  1. In the PAYLOAD section, build the JWT payload and include the following claims:
  1. In the VERIFY SIGNATURE section:

    • First box: Paste the public key (X.509 PEM format) from the previous section.
    • Second box: Paste the private key (X.509 PEM format).
  2. Copy the JWT that appears in the Encoded section.

Build the request

Your next step is to build the POST request to the /token endpoint for an access token. Two requests to the /token endpoint are necessary. The initial request obtains the dpop-nonce header value from the

authorization server. The second request includes an updated JWT with the dpop-nonce header value in the JWT payload. After you receive a nonce value from the /token endpoint, you can continue to use that value utnil you receive an error with a new dpop-nonce header.

The additional header in the initial request is DPoP. The value for DPoP is the DPoP proof JWT from the previous section.

Request example:

Note: Some values are truncated for brevity.


authorization server verifies the JWT in the request and sends back an "Authorization server requires nonce in DPoP proof" error and a dpop-nonce header and value.


authorization server provides the dpop-nonce value to limit the lifetime of DPoP proof JWTs and renews the value every 24 hours. The old dpop-nonce value continues to work for three days after generation. Be sure to save the dpop-nonce value from the token response header and refresh it every 24 hours.

Use the value of the dpop-nonce header in the JWT payload and update the JWT:

  1. Add the dpop-nonce header value as the nonce claim value in the JWT payload along with a jti claim.

    Example payload:


    • nonce: Used only once. A recent nonce value provided by the authorization server using the dpop-nonce HTTP header. The authorization server provides the DPoP nonce value to limit the lifetime of DPoP proof JWTs.
    • jti: JWT ID. A unique JWT identifier (opens new window) for the request
  2. Copy the new DPoP proof and add it to the DPoP header in the request.

  3. Send the request for an access token again. The

    authorization server should return the access token. In the following example, tokens are truncated for brevity.

          "token_type": "DPoP",
          "expires_in": 3600,
          "access_token": "eyJraWQiOiJRVX.....wt7oSakPDUg",
          "scope": "openid offline_access",
          "refresh_token": "3CEz0Zvjs0eG9mu4w36n-c2g6YIqRfyRSsJzFAqEyzw",
          "id_token": "eyJraWQiOiJRVXlG.....m5h5-NAtVFdwD1bg2JprEJQ"

Decode the access token

You can use the JWT tool (opens new window) to decode the access token to view the included claims. The decoded access token should look something like this:


  • cnf: Confirmation. Claim that contains the confirmation method.
  • jkt: JWK confirmation method. A base64url encoding of the JWK SHA-256 hash of the DPoP public key (in JWK format) to which the access token is bound.

Note: If your client has DPoP enabled, then you can't add or modify the cnf claim using token inline hooks.

Make a request to a non-Okta resource

Now that you have a DPoP-bound access token, you can make requests to DPoP-protected resources. The following example request displays the DPoP-bound access token in the Authorization header and the DPoP proof JWT in the DPoP header. Values are truncated for brevity.

curl -v -X GET \
  --header 'Accept: application/json' \
  --header 'Content-Type: application/json' \
  --header 'Authorization: DPoP eyJraWQiOiJRVX.....wt7oSakPDUg' \
  --header 'DPoP: eyJ0eXAiOiJkcG9w.....H8-u9gaK2-oIj8ipg' \

Validate token and DPoP header

The resource server must perform validation on the access token to complete the flow and grant access. When the client sends an access request with the access token, validation should verify that the cnf claim is present. Then validation should compare the jkt in the access token with the public key in the JWT value of the DPoP header.

The following is a high-level overview of the validation steps that the resource server must perform.

Note: The resource server must not grant access to the resource unless all checks are successful.

Refresh an access token

To refresh your DPoP-bound access token, send a token request with a grant_type of refresh_token. Then, include the same DPoP header value that you used to obtain the refresh token in the DPoP header for this request. Include the openid scope when you also want to refresh an ID token. In the following examples, tokens are truncated for brevity.

Example request

Example response

    "token_type": "DPoP",
    "expires_in": 3600,
    "access_token": "eyJraWQiOiJRVXlGdjB.....RxDhLJievVVN5WQrAZlw",
    "scope": "offline_access openid",
    "refresh_token": "3CEz0Zvjs0eG9mu4w36n-c2g6YIqRfyRSsJzFAqEyzw",
    "id_token": "eyJraWQiOiJRVX.....3SA6LTm7mA"