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Cloud permissions

The operator and the bank-vaults CLI command needs certain cloud permissions to function properly (init, unseal, configuration).

Google Cloud

The Service Account in which the Pod is running has to have the following IAM Roles:

  • Cloud KMS Admin
  • Cloud KMS CryptoKey Encrypter/Decrypter
  • Storage Admin

A CLI example how to run bank-vaults based Vault configuration on Google Cloud:

bank-vaults configure --google-cloud-kms-key-ring vault --google-cloud-kms-crypto-key bank-vaults --google-cloud-kms-location global --google-cloud-storage-bucket vault-ha --google-cloud-kms-project continual-flow-276578


The Access Policy in which the Pod is running has to have the following IAM Roles:

  • Key Vault All Key permissions
  • Key Vault All Secret permissions


Enable IAM OIDC provider for an EKS cluster

To allow Vault pods to assume IAM roles in order to access AWS services the IAM OIDC provider needs to be enabled on the cluster.


# Enable OIDC provider for the cluster with eksctl
# Follow the docs here to do it manually
eksctl utils associate-iam-oidc-provider \

# Create a KMS key and S3 bucket and enter details here
AWS_ACCOUNT_ID=$(aws sts get-caller-identity --query "Account" --output text)
OIDC_PROVIDER=$(aws eks describe-cluster --name ${BANZAI_CURRENT_CLUSTER_NAME} --query "cluster.identity.oidc.issuer" --output text | sed -e "s/^https:\/\///")

cat > trust.json <<EOF
  "Version": "2012-10-17",
  "Statement": [
      "Effect": "Allow",
      "Principal": {
        "Federated": "arn:aws:iam::${AWS_ACCOUNT_ID}:oidc-provider/${OIDC_PROVIDER}"
      "Action": "sts:AssumeRoleWithWebIdentity",
      "Condition": {
        "StringEquals": {
          "${OIDC_PROVIDER}:sub": "system:serviceaccount:${SERVICE_ACCOUNT_NAMESPACE}:${SERVICE_ACCOUNT_NAME}"

cat > vault-policy.json <<EOF
    "Version": "2012-10-17",
    "Statement": [
            "Effect": "Allow",
            "Action": [
            "Resource": [
            "Effect": "Allow",
            "Action": [
            "Resource": [
            "Effect": "Allow",
            "Action": "s3:ListBucket",
            "Resource": "arn:aws:s3:::${BUCKET}"

# AWS IAM role and Kubernetes service account setup
aws iam create-role --role-name vault --assume-role-policy-document file://trust.json
aws iam create-policy --policy-name vault --policy-document file://vault-policy.json
aws iam attach-role-policy --role-name vault --policy-arn arn:aws:iam::${AWS_ACCOUNT_ID}:policy/vault

# If you are having a ServiceAccount already, only the annotation is needed
kubectl create serviceaccount $SERVICE_ACCOUNT_NAME --namespace $SERVICE_ACCOUNT_NAMESPACE
kubectl annotate serviceaccount $SERVICE_ACCOUNT_NAME  --namespace $SERVICE_ACCOUNT_NAMESPACE"arn:aws:iam::${AWS_ACCOUNT_ID}:role/vault"

# Cleanup
rm vault-policy.json trust.json

Getting the root token

After Vault is successfully deployed, you can query the root-token for admin access.

# Fetch Vault root token, check bucket for actual name based on
aws s3 cp s3://$s3_bucket_name/vault-root /tmp/vault-root

export VAULT_TOKEN="$(aws kms decrypt \
  --ciphertext-blob fileb:///tmp/vault-root \
  --encryption-context Tool=bank-vaults \
  --query Plaintext --output text | base64 --decode)"

The Instance profile in which the Pod is running has to have the following IAM Policies:

  • KMS: kms:Encrypt, kms:Decrypt
  • S3: s3:GetObject, s3:PutObject, s3:DeleteObject on object level and s3:ListBucket on bucket level

An example command how to init and unseal Vault on AWS:

bank-vaults unseal --init --mode aws-kms-s3 --aws-kms-key-id 9f054126-2a98-470c-9f10-9b3b0cad94a1 --aws-s3-region eu-west-1 --aws-kms-region eu-west-1 --aws-s3-bucket bank-vaults

When using existing unseal keys, you need to make sure to kms encrypt these with the proper EncryptionContext. If this is not done, the invocation of bank-vaults will trigger an InvalidCiphertextException from AWS KMS. An example how to encrypt the keys (specify --profile and --region accordingly):

aws kms encrypt --key-id "alias/kms-key-alias" --encryption-context "Tool=bank-vaults"  --plaintext fileb://vault-unseal-0.txt --output text --query CiphertextBlob | base64 -D > vault-unseal-0

From this point on copy the encrypted files to the appropriate S3 bucket. As an additional security measure make sure to turn on encryption of the S3 bucket before uploading the files.

Alibaba Cloud

A CLI example how to run bank-vaults based Vault unsealing on Alibaba Cloud:

bank-vaults unseal --mode alibaba-kms-oss --alibaba-access-key-id ${ALIBABA_ACCESS_KEY_ID} --alibaba-access-key-secret ${ALIBABA_ACCESS_KEY_SECRET} --alibaba-kms-region eu-central-1 --alibaba-kms-key-id ${ALIBABA_KMS_KEY_UUID} --alibaba-oss-endpoint --alibaba-oss-bucket bank-vaults


The Service Account in which the bank-vaults Pod is running has to have the following Roles rules:

- apiGroups: [""]
  resources: ["secrets"]
  verbs:     ["get", "create", "update"]