Access rights are structured authorizations of a user or an application to access communication services, programs, directories or files. In software development, access rights provide access to certain features of an object.
In companies, access to networks and systems and the applications and resources accessible via them must be regulated for security reasons as well as due to the requirements of the company organization. Most frequently, access rights for servers, services and programs are regulated by assigning passwords. The identifier and password are generally also associated with access rights to the corresponding hardware and software.
The access right includes the files and information that the access right holder can access and the type of application; whether the files can only be read or also written. Access rights are assigned according to the operational function and position in the organization. On the other hand, with the PoLP concept, Principle of Least Privilege (PoLP), there are access rights of users restricted as much as possible to increase system security.
- In programming languages, access rights ensure access to certain features of an object. Object-oriented programming languages that support access rights distinguish between private and public features. The public features of an object form the externally visible interface, while the private features are only accessible within an object. In some object-oriented languages, protected characteristics can also be defined. They differ from private characteristics in that they can be accessed in objects of derived classes. Access rights are defined in the class definition and can implement different levels of data encapsulation.