[pass] Feature proposal: secure environment variables

Renato Alves alves.rjc at gmail.com
Thu May 5 00:12:52 CEST 2016

Hi Gabe,

A simple script:

source <(pass $1)
exec "$@"

If called with:

./script.sh env/mytool/dev ./mytool.py takes_arguments

Should produce what you desire.

But as a general note I wouldn't call this "more secure" though. Once
something is added to the environment it will often remain there during
the lifetime of the process. Also true for forked processes if the
environment is not sanitized.


Gabe Mulley wrote on 05/04/2016 11:35 PM:
> I am planning on developing a patch for this feature, but wanted to run
> it by the list first. The goal of the feature is to enable more secure
> usage and development of tools that expect passwords and other sensitive
> data to be stored in environment variables.
> I want to do something like this:
> pass exec --env=env/mytool/dev ./mytool.py
> Where "env/mytool/dev" is a passfile with the following content:
> export MYTOOL_ENV=dev
> export SOME_SECURE_VAR=secret
> export ANOTHER_SECURE_VAR="another secret"
> The goal is run "./mytool.py" in a transient shell that has the
> variables defined in the environment.
> Imagine something like this (open to ideas about how to make this work
> with other shells):
> BASH_ENV=/dev/shm/password-store.sh.yhONUYbBTB8Mr/maTNsc-test bash -c
> "./mytool.py"
> Where the temporary file contains the decrypted content of the passfile.
> This could be used to store AWS keys (for example).
> What are your thoughts? Would this type of patch be accepted if I
> developed it? Is there a better way to accomplish this goal?
> Thanks,
> -Gabe
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