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Explicit Encryption

On this page

  • Overview
  • Use Explicit Encryption
  • Create a ClientEncryption Instance
  • Encrypt Fields in Read and Write Operations
  • Automatic Decryption
  • Server-Side Field Level Encryption Enforcement
  • Learn More

Learn how to use the explicit encryption mechanism of Queryable Encryption. Explicit encryption lets you specify the key material used to encrypt fields. It provides fine-grained control over security, at the cost of increased complexity when configuring collections and writing code for MongoDB Drivers.

Explicit encryption is a mechanism in which you specify how to encrypt and decrypt fields in your document for each operation you perform on your database.

Explicit encryption is available in the following MongoDB products:

  • MongoDB Community Server

  • MongoDB Enterprise Advanced

  • MongoDB Atlas

ClientEncryption is an abstraction used across drivers and mongosh that encapsulates the Key Vault collection and KMS operations involved in explicit encryption.

To create a ClientEncryption instance, specify:

  • A kmsProviders object configured with access to the KMS provider hosting your Customer Master Key

  • The namespace of your Key Vault collection

  • If you use MongoDB Community Server, set the bypassQueryAnalysis option to True

  • A MongoClient instance with access to your Key Vault collection

For more ClientEncryption options, see MongoClient Options for Queryable Encryption.

You must update read and write operations throughout your application such that your application encrypts fields before performing read and write operations.

To encrypt fields, use the encrypt method of your ClientEncryption instance. Specify the following:

  • The value to be encrypted

  • The algorithm used, either Indexed or Unindexed

  • The ID of the Data Encryption Key

  • The contention factor (if you are using the Indexed algorithm)

  • If performing a read operation, set the query type defined for your field (if you are using the Indexed algorithm)

Note

Query Types

The query type only applies to read operations.

To learn more about query types, see Query Types.

Use the Indexed algorithm if you specify a queryType on the field.

Indexed supports equality queries. Indexed fields require an index on the server. The index is created by specifying the encryptedFields option in db.createCollection().

To decrypt fields automatically, configure your MongoClient instance as follows:

  • Specify a kmsProviders object

  • Specify your Key Vault collection

  • If you use MongoDB Community Server, set the bypassQueryAnalysis option to True

Note

Automatic Decryption in MongoDB Community Server

Automatic decryption is available in MongoDB Community Server. Automatic encryption requires MongoDB Enterprise or MongoDB Atlas.

Specify Fields for Encryption to enforce encryption of specific fields in a collection.

Indexed fields require an index on the server. The index is created by specifying the encryptedFields option in db.createCollection().

If your MongoDB instance enforces the encryption of specific fields, any client performing Queryable Encryption with explicit encryption must encrypt those fields as specified. To learn how to set up server-side Queryable Encryption enforcement, see Field Encryption and Queryability.

To learn more about Key Vault collections, Data Encryption Keys, and Customer Master Keys, see Keys and Key Vaults.

To learn more about KMS providers and kmsProviders objects, see KMS Providers.

←  Encrypted Collection ManagementKeys and Key Vaults →