DEV Community πŸ‘©β€πŸ’»πŸ‘¨β€πŸ’»

Cover image for Hide and Keep your API key out of GitHub repository
Marwa Said
Marwa Said

Posted on • Updated on

Hide and Keep your API key out of GitHub repository

When you upload your Android app on GitHub, you need to hide it as no one has access to it except you. It is considered a security glitch, so that’s why it is important to hide your API key. I am going to show you how you can do that easily.

Some Developers store their API key in a String variable like this.

private static final String APK_KEY = "asjsdakf4d3ggs2ytm4x";

It is not good to push your secret things into public repository as other people could use up your limited API calls. That’s probably the least concerning situation. Sharing of API keys becomes more of a concern if the API key authenticates someone for access to a subset of data.

So, let’s see how we can do that.

1- Create a file called gradle.properties in .gradle folder.

   -Drive C
    -Users folder
     -your user folder
      -.gradle folder
      Create it here
      -gradle.properties
Enter fullscreen mode Exit fullscreen mode

Then, write your APPNAME_API_KEY = "asjsdakf4d3ggs2ytm4x" inside it. Save it as PROPERTIES File by enclosing with double quotes like this "gradle.properties"

2. Next step, Go to module level build.gradle file in your project

Then, put your API key for debug and release purposes under buildTypes tree.

buildConfigField β€˜String’, β€œApiKey”, APPNAME_API_KEY

It will be like that

buildTypes {
        debug{
            buildConfigField 'String', "ApiKey", APPNAME_API_KEY
        }
        release {
            minifyEnabled false
            proguardFiles getDefaultProguardFile('proguard-android-optimize.txt'), 'proguard-rules.pro'
            buildConfigField 'String', "ApiKey", APPNAME_API_KEY
        }
}
Enter fullscreen mode Exit fullscreen mode

Sync it

3. Last Step, access your APK key in your Java file like that

private static final String API_KEY = BuildConfig.ApiKey;
Enter fullscreen mode Exit fullscreen mode

If ApiKey goes red, press Make Project button or use Ctrl+F9

Another Way to do that:

1. Add the API key to your local.properties file:

apiKey="Your Key"
Enter fullscreen mode Exit fullscreen mode

2. Add these two lines to the root level of your app-level build.gradle file:

def localProperties = new Properties()
localProperties.load(new FileInputStream(rootProject.file("local.properties")))
Enter fullscreen mode Exit fullscreen mode

3. Add this following line to your app-level build.gradle file:

android {

  defaultConfig {
      // ...   

      buildConfigField "String", "API_KEY",localProperties['apiKey']

  }   
}
Enter fullscreen mode Exit fullscreen mode

4. Sync Gradle and build the project. You can now reference the key:

String apiKey = BuildConfig.API_KEY;
Enter fullscreen mode Exit fullscreen mode

Sounds pretty easy, does it?. Whenever you upload your Android project on GitHub, the person that uses your repository will not be able to figure out what your API key is. Therefore, you are secure NOW.

Follow me on: GitHub and LinkedIn

Top comments (0)

🌚 Browsing with dark mode makes you a better developer.

It's a scientific fact.