Amazon SQS security best practices - Amazon Simple Queue Service
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Amazon SQS security best practices

Amazon provides many security features for Amazon SQS, which you should review in the context of your own security policy. The following are preventative security best practices for Amazon SQS.


The specific implementation guidance provided is for common use cases and implementations. We suggest that you view these best practices in the context of your specific use case, architecture, and threat model.

Make sure that queues aren't publicly accessible

Unless you explicitly require anyone on the internet to be able to read or write to your Amazon SQS queue, you should make sure that your queue isn't publicly accessible (accessible by everyone in the world or by any authenticated Amazon user).

  • Avoid creating policies with Principal set to "".

  • Avoid using a wildcard (*). Instead, name a specific user or users.

Implement least-privilege access

When you grant permissions, you decide who receives them, which queues the permissions are for, and specific API actions that you want to allow for these queues. Implementing least privilege is important to reducing security risks and reducing the effect of errors or malicious intent.

Follow the standard security advice of granting least privilege. That is, grant only the permissions required to perform a specific task. You can implement this using a combination of security policies.

Amazon SQS uses the producer-consumer model, requiring three types of user account access:

  • Administrators – Access to creating, modifying, and deleting queues. Administrators also control queue policies.

  • Producers – Access to sending messages to queues.

  • Consumers – Access to receiving and deleting messages from queues.

For more information, see the following sections:

Use IAM roles for applications and Amazon services which require Amazon SQS access

For applications or Amazon services such as Amazon EC2 to access Amazon SQS queues, they must use valid Amazon credentials in their Amazon API requests. Because these credentials aren't rotated automatically, you shouldn't store Amazon credentials directly in the application or EC2 instance.

You should use an IAM role to manage temporary credentials for applications or services that need to access Amazon SQS. When you use a role, you don't have to distribute long-term credentials (such as a username, password, and access keys) to an EC2 instance or Amazon service such as Amazon Lambda. Instead, the role supplies temporary permissions that applications can use when they make calls to other Amazon resources.

For more information, see IAM Roles and Common Scenarios for Roles: Users, Applications, and Services in the IAM User Guide.

Implement server-side encryption

To mitigate data leakage issues, use encryption at rest to encrypt your messages using a key stored in a different location from the location that stores your messages. Server-side encryption (SSE) provides data encryption at rest. Amazon SQS encrypts your data at the message level when it stores it, and decrypts the messages for you when you access them. SSE uses keys managed in Amazon Key Management Service. As long as you authenticate your request and have access permissions, there is no difference between accessing encrypted and unencrypted queues.

For more information, see Encryption at rest in Amazon SQS and Amazon SQS Key management.

Enforce encryption of data in transit

Without HTTPS (TLS), a network-based attacker can eavesdrop on network traffic or manipulate it, using an attack such as man-in-the-middle. Allow only encrypted connections over HTTPS (TLS) using the aws:SecureTransport condition in the queue policy to force requests to use SSL.

Consider using VPC endpoints to access Amazon SQS

If you have queues that you must be able to interact with but which must absolutely not be exposed to the internet, use VPC endpoints to queue access to only the hosts within a particular VPC. You can use queue policies to control access to queues from specific Amazon VPC endpoints or from specific VPCs.

Amazon SQS VPC endpoints provide two ways to control access to your messages:

  • You can control the requests, users, or groups that are allowed through a specific VPC endpoint.

  • You can control which VPCs or VPC endpoints have access to your queue using a queue policy.

For more information, see Amazon Virtual Private Cloud endpoints for Amazon SQS and Creating an Amazon VPC endpoint policy for Amazon SQS.