JWT Authentication in Python

JSON Web Token (JWT) provide a means of transmitting information from the client to the server in a secured way.

Since there are 3 parts separated by a ., each section is created differently. We have the 3 parts which are:

  • header
  • payload
  • signature

Generation JSON Web Token:

  • An API endpoint that accepts username and password via JSON payload and returns access_token which is the JSON Web Token we can use.
  • We must pass the token as part of the Authorization header, like – JWT <token>.

One of the most popular library for JSON web token generation is PyJWT

$ pip install pyjwt

Creating a JWT in Python:

Here the user details are encoded for obtaining the JSON Web Token. Always try to store the encrypted password not the original one for security purpose. Here sha256 library is used for password encryption and decryption. The token which is generated is usually not in UTF-8 format. So .decode(‘utf-8) is used for the conversion.

if sha256_crypt.verify(password, hashed_password):
  # Encoding user details
  access_token = jwt.encode({'username' : username, 'hashed_password' : hashed_password}, 'secret', algorithm='HS256')
  token = access_token.decode('utf-8')
  return jsonify({
    'auth_token' : token

Decoding of the JSON Web token provides the user details as previously the user details were encoded to make the token some sense.

token = request.headers['token']
access_token = token.encode('utf-8')
user_details = jwt.decode(access_token, 'secret')
return jsonify(user_details)