How to implement authorization in a React application

Published by Alex Olivier on January 16, 2024
How to implement authorization in a React application

React is a JavaScript-based framework and UI development library as opposed to a programming language. React offers a variety of extensions that make it useful beyond its best-known role as a UI development tool that handles CSS file prefixes. Implementing authorization in a React application using Cerbos produces a slew of benefits we'll get into shortly. But first, here is a simplified step-by-step guide covering how to implement Cerbos authorization into your React app.

Implement Cerbos authorization in a React application

  • Step 1: Install the Cerbos client library in your React project.
  • Step 2: Create a Cerbos client instance in a central location within the React app. Typically where you would initialize the application.
  • Step 3: Be certain that you replace 'http://your-cerbos-server-endpoint' with the endpoint of your Cerbos server.
  • Step 4: Use Cerbos to check permissions prior to rendering various components or enabling certain actions.
  • Step 5: Handle unauthorized access by creating custom responses to users who do not demonstrate the necessary permissions.
  • Step 6: Integrate Cerbos with your React router to control access to specific routes using the Cerbos hook in concert with the useHistory hook from the React router. (Note this step is optional since your React app may not use the React router for navigation.)
  • Step 7: Don’t forget to adjust the relevant code snippets in accordance with your specific needs.

For more detailed documentation covering implementation of Cerbos in React applications, please refer to the Cerbos documentation.

Benefits of implementing Cerbos authorization in a React application

Implementing Cerbos into your React app will provide a variety of benefits including:

  • Fine-grained access control: Cerbos enables you to enforce precise control based on attributes like user roles, actions, resource types and more.
  • Centralized policy management: Cerbos centralizes and simplifies policy management making it easy to define, manage and update all your access control policies on the fly.
  • More effective audit and compliance capabilities: Cerbos allows you to monitor all access control decisions thereby enhancing your ability to enforce compliance.
  • Policy as code: With Cerbos, authorization policies are defined using declarative language making it easy to understand and audit access control policies.
  • React component level authorization: The Cerbos React library enables you to implement React component level authorization which can produce a more responsive and personalized experience for the user.


In summary, when you integrate Cerbos into your React app you improve application security, flexibility and overall manageability.

Relevant links

Are you looking to improve your application's authorization logic and security? Look no further than Cerbos! Discover how Cerbos works and explore its powerful features:

  • Cerbos playground, where you can easily build and test policies in an online editor
  • Cerbos ecosystem and its seamless integrations with various SDKs, modern frameworks, and authentication providers
  • Learn more about Cerbos Hub here

Get started building your first policies with ease and join the companies that trust Cerbos in production for their authorization needs.

Book a free Policy Workshop to discuss your requirements and get your first policy written by the Cerbos team