Gartner Research

Modern Identity and APIs: Mobile, OpenID Connect, OAuth, JSON and REST

Published: 30 July 2015

ID: G00277246

Analyst(s): Mark Diodati


For developers and enterprise architects, OpenID Connect 1.0 (2014) and OAuth 2.0 (2012) are the clear choices for application authentication and authorization. Furthermore, a best practice for developing user management applications has emerged — JSON over REST — which has industry support.

Table Of Contents


  • OAuth Versus OpenID Connect
  • Application Usage of the OpenID Connect ID Token
  • Mobile Platform Challenges and Developments
    • Two Separate User Interfaces
    • OS Enhancements
    • SSO
  • JSON Over REST: A Modern User Management Protocol
  • Strengths
  • Weaknesses


  • Choose the Right Protocol
  • Don't Build Your Own
    • OpenID Connect Providers
    • OAuth Resource Servers
  • Use Multifactor Authentication
  • Use Privileged Access Management
  • Select the Right Authorization Focus for OAuth Services
  • Practice Good Security
  • Use JSON Over REST for Your User Management Service
  • Monitor Protocol and OS Developments
    • Intermediate Browser Capabilities
    • Broader Adoption of the ID Token
    • Productized Dynamic Client Registration

The Details

  • OAuth 2.0
    • Session Management
  • OpenID Connect
    • ID Token
    • Dynamic Client Registration
    • User Information Endpoint
    • Provider Discovery
  • Client Registration
  • Commonly Used Endpoints
  • Authentication Flows
    • Resource Owner Password Credentials and Client Credentials
    • Authorization Code
    • Implicit
    • Hybrid Flow
  • Scopes
    • OAuth
    • OpenID Connect
  • Code and Token Protection
    • PKCE
    • Proof of Possession
    • Custom URI Definition
  • Separation of Authentication and Application Interfaces
  • JSON Over REST User Management Services

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