Biscuit Python 0.2.0

Posted June 21, 2023 by clementd ‐ 3 min read

Biscuit support in python has been released

Biscuit is a specification for a cryptographically verified authorization token supporting offline attenuation, and a language for authorization policies based on Datalog. It is used to build decentralized authorization systems, such as microservices architectures, or advanced delegation patterns with user facing systems.

Following the stable release of biscuit-rust and the update of biscuit-wasm, we are pleased to announce that a first version of biscuit-python has been released as well.


Biscuit-python is available on pypi, pre-compiled for several GNU/Linux distributions, MacOS (x86 and Apple Silicon) and Windows, as well as a source distribution.

pip install biscuit-python

A dedicated documentation website is available: It features detailed examples and a complete API reference.

Biscuit-python provides a pythonic layer on top of biscuit-rust: token parsing, datalog parsing, datalog evaluation are handled by the rust library.

The current library grew out of a proof-of-concept started by Josh Wright.

A few bites of biscuit-python

When working with biscuit, most of the work is about manipulating datalog snippets. Same as with SQL, manually building datalog snippets by concatenating strings is discouraged, as it can be the cause of security issues through injections.

All biscuit libraries provide a way to bind parameters within datalog by referencing values from the host language, and biscuit-python is no exception:

from biscuit_auth import Authorizer, Biscuit, BiscuitBuilder, Fact, PrivateKey, PublicKey, Rule
from datetime import datetime, timedelta, timezone

# you can start with a single datalog snippet
builder = BiscuitBuilder("""
  check if time($time), $time < {expiration};
    'user_id': '1234',
    # datetimes are supported if they have an explicit timezone
    'expiration': = timezone.utc) + timedelta(days = 1)

# facts can be dynamically added
for file in ['file1', 'file2']:
  builder.add_fact(Fact("""right({file}, "read")""", { 'file': file}))

token ="23d9d45b32899eefd4cde9a2caecdd41f0449c95ee1e4c6b53ef38cb957dd690")).to_base64()


authorizer = Authorizer("""
  allow if user($u), right({file}, "read");
    'time': = timezone.utc),
    'file': 'file1'

parsed = Biscuit.from_base64(token, PublicKey.from_hex("9e124fbb46ff99a87219aef4b09f4f6c3b7fd96b7bd279e38af3ef429a101c69"))


authorizer.add_token(Biscuit.from_base64(token, PublicKey.from_hex("9e124fbb46ff99a87219aef4b09f4f6c3b7fd96b7bd279e38af3ef429a101c69")))


user = authorizer.query(Rule("user($user) <- user($user)"))

Next steps

Biscuit-python is not yet at feature parity with biscuit-rust and biscuit-wasm. Since it is based on biscuit-rust, it is more a matter of exposing features rather than implementing them, but it is not done yet (as of 0.2.0).

What should come next:

  • appending third-party blocks (verifying tokens with third-party blocks is already supported)
  • saving and extracting snapshots
  • sealing tokens

If you want to contribute to biscuit-python, adding these features would be a good way to get started.

Another thing on our radar is integration with web frameworks like flask or django. If you're an experienced pythonista, we want to hear from you!