AWS Blog

Enhanced Identity Support for Amazon Cognito

by Jeff Barr | on | in Amazon Cognito, Mobile Development | | Comments

Amazon Cognito, as you may already know, simplifies the task of authenticating users and storing, managing, and syncing their data across multiple devices. We launched Cognito this past summer with support for three public identity providers. The identity providers (Google, Facebook, and Amazon) are used to create unique Cognito identifiers (there’s also support for unauthenticated guest users). This allows new users to start using your app without taking the time to register a new identity. You can read my blog post, New AWS Mobile Services, to learn more about Cognito and its role as an identity provider.

Enhanced Identity Support
Today we are making Cognito even more flexible by allowing you to make use of the user identity system of your choice. You can use this feature to allow your users to create an identity that is separate and distinct from their existing social identity.

With today’s launch, Cognito takes an identifier that you supply and uses it to manufacture unique Cognito IDs for each person who uses your app. You can use this identifier to save and synchronize user data across devices and to retrieve temporary, limited-privilege AWS credentials through the AWS Security Token Service.

To use this new facility, you must first implement a backend identity provider of your own. Then you call the new GetOpenIdTokenForDeveloperIdentity function and supply it with the name of your identity pool. The function will return a unique Cognito ID and an OpenID connect token. To learn more about how to do this and to see some sample code, read the post Amazon Cognito: Announcing Developer Authenticated Identities on the AWS Mobile Development Blog.