Last updatedMar 30, 2020

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Migration guide for Connect Apps to improve user privacy

This page provides a guide for connect app developers adopting Atlassian Connect API changes to improve user privacy in accordance with the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). These changes were announced in for Jira, Confluence, and Bitbucket. As part of this GDPR work, personal data, such as username and email address, will be removed from various locations in our APIs. Where possible, we aim to provide a migration path (as covered by this document) to help developers move away from expecting connect to send user's personal data.

The existing APIs will be available until the end of deprecation period - 29 Mar 2019. During the deprecation period app developers need to make changes to their apps to explicitly opt-in to the changes so that they can observe the new behavior of the API. This guide describes the opt-in process in details below. Where possible, to help with the transition, APIs have been extended to accept and return extra information (most notably Atlassian account IDs) in order to facilitate the transition to the new API without requiring explicit opt-in.

Some changes are still in development

We always strive to give our vendors as much time as possible to plan and do the required work. This is why we have published this migration guide before all changes have been release into production. See APIs affected by GDPR API Migration for the detailed list and implementation status of APIs changes. It is advised not enable the Connect GDPR API migration for existing Marketplace-listed production versions. We will continue to add API changes under the API migration opt-in, so apps may break. Check this page to find out when it is safe to enable the API migration for your customers.

Need some help? Head for the developer community for Confluence Cloud.

Identifying users

Until now, many Atlassian Connect APIs used personal data such as usernames and email address to identify users. These APIs are being changed and only Atlassian Account IDs will be used to identify users. As a result, apps need to use Atlassian account IDs for identifying users, in place of current identifiers. Any data stores used by the app also needs to be updated to use Atlassian Account IDs for identifying users instead of other personal data such as usernames and/or email addresses.

Opting in to the new behavior

For the duration of the deprecation period, some APIs are configured to accept both "legacy" (i.e. using personal data) and "new" behavior. This is to allow vendors the opportunity to incrementally move away from relying on personal data, rather than forcing all apps to switch to new behavior at a specific date. This also allows app vendors to test whether their apps work with the new APIs.

To enable app to communicate to connect their interest in the new APIs Atlassian Connect has introduced new API migration Opt-in mechanism. If an app does not explicitly opt into the GDPR API migration, then it will be subject to the default product behavior. This means that our APIs will continue operating as is (potentially sending and receiving personal data), until the end of the deprecation period 29 Mar 2019 after which personal data will no long be sent or accepted. Note that if an app will not be updated to handle data format free of personal data - this app will stop working. That is why an action must be taken by app vendor to update existing Connect apps even if a particular app does not use or require personal data.

Personal data visibility semantics

In order to provide users with greater control over their own personal data (PD) and to simplify the processing of identifying where user PD is stored/transfer and how it is deleted if/when a user wishes to be forgotten, Atlassian products (specifically Jira, Confluence and Bitbucket) are removing user profile data from product databases. This change affects the way user's PD is accessed. Users are given direct control over visibility of their personal data and can chose to restrict all access to it. That includes Connect Apps. By default all apps (no matter the authorization model or account type), apps just get access to PD that has been set by uses as public. Apps that use user impersonation are also subject to this changes.

If an app requires access to user's non-public PD then users can do a 3LO flow in which they explicitly consent access to their own private PD. See OAuth 2.0 authorization code grants (3LO) for apps to learn more about how it works.

It is important to mention that if app only requires access to the currently logged in user on the front-end then it might be sufficient to use AP.request(). Requestor is always the logged in user and cannot be changed by an app.

Migrating existing apps

All Connect apps regardless of their use of personal data must be updated to support new APIs and data formats. Old APIs will not be accessible after the end of migration period. Main areas affected by changes are inbound authorization (app → product) , outbound authentication (product → app), iframes, App lifecycle, Webhooks, REST API and Javascript API.

For inbound authorization

The incoming JWT now returns the account ID instead of the user key in the sub claim. See Understanding JWT for Connect apps.

For outbound authorization

User context claim of JWT currently contains user key, user name and user display name. During the deprecation period we are adding account ID here. After the deprecation period the claim will be removed altogether, since the sub claim will contain the account ID.


Standard iframe context parameters: user_id, user_key, loc, tz will be removed. Apps can currently define their URLs with context parameters and profileUser.key. A new context parameter profileUser.accountId will be introduced and old parameters will be deprecated.

Remote app themes

The context parameters username and userkey will be removed. Instead the app should use Atlassian Account Id from the JWT token.


Confluence sends some information related to the blueprint in the body of the request during the creation process. This information will not contain userKey and userLocale anymore. Instead the app should use Atlassian Account Id from the JWT token.


In order to help apps with migration to GDPR compliance, a new parameter Atlassian Account Id (if available) will be added to the set of username typed parameters. That should help app vendors to start using accountId and move away from usernames.

  • When your app opted into GDPR migration during deprecation period, the value of each username parameter will be replaced by accountId. This behaviour will be enforced after the end of deprecation period.
  • For apps that have not yet opted-into GDPR migration during the deprecation period, a temporary companion accountId is added. It can be referred to by adding a suffix .accountId to the original parameter name. For example: if your original url request parameter looks like user={user}, an extra user.accountId={user.accountId} is available for you app.

App lifecycle and webhooks

The installed and uninstalled lifecycle callbacks accidentally include the query parameter user_key. This field will be removed. Apps using JWT authentication should instead use the user context from the JWT token.


Currently the response of the license API for cloud apps contains an array of host contacts, including the email and name of each contact. The email and name of each contact will be replaced by account ID.

Javascript API

AP.user.getUser() currently returns the logged in user's ID, key and full name. This method will be deprecated and replaced by AP.user.getCurrentUser() which will simply return the Atlassian Account ID.

To help with apps migration we have already updated Atlassian connect frameworks

Migrating Atlassian Connect Express Apps

If you are using Atlassian Connect Express for your app you will need to update to the version 3.2.0 or above. New version already includes all code changes to handle Atlassian Account Id in place of user id. Note that for existing installations a data migrations (described below) is also required.

Migrating SpringBoot Apps

If you are using Atlassian SpringBoot for your app you will need to update to the version 1.5.0 or above. New version already includes all code changes to handle Atlassian Account Id in place of user id. Note that for existing installations a data migrations (described below) is also required.

Data migration

In order to migrate existing data, apps can use the Get userresource on the Atlassian application instance (Jira, Confluence, or Bitbucket) to retrieve user details, and update data in their store with the Atlassian account ID of each user. For example, here is a high level migration guide:

  • Alter the data store to add an additional field or column for the Atlassian account ID. These IDs are between 1-128 characters long, and contain alphanumeric characters as well as "-" and ":" characters.
  • Create a migration code that loops over all records in the data store that:
    • Identifies a user record by username or email address
    • For each record, makes a request to Get user with the relevant data
    • Stores the Atlassian account ID returned in the response into the data store record
  • Alter the data store to remove the username or email address field/column

API Changes

See APIs affected by GDPR API Migration for the detailed list of APIs changes.

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