Filling in the GNAP

How Are These All Related?

OK, so there’s GNAP, but now you’re probably asking yourself what’s the difference between GNAP and XYZ, or TxAuth, or OAuth 3.0. With the alphabet soup of names, it’s certainly confusing if you haven’t been following along the story in the last year.

The GNAP Protocol

Not only is GNAP an official working group, but the GNAP protocol has also been defined in an official working group draft document. This draft represents the output of several months of concerted effort by a design team within the GNAP working group. The protocol in this document is not exactly the same as the earlier XYZ/TxAuth protocol, since it pulled from multiple sources and discussions, but there are some familiar pieces.

The Immediate Future

Now that GNAP is an active standard under development, XYZ will shift into being an open-source implementation of GNAP from here out. As of the time of publication, we are actively working to implement all of the changes that were introduced during the design team process. Other developers are gearing up to implement the gnap-00 draft as well, and it will be really interesting to try to plug these into each other to test interoperability at a first stage.



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Justin Richer

Justin Richer


Justin Richer is a security architect and freelance consultant living in the Boston area. To get in touch, contact his company: