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When you create an AWS account, AWS assigns you a pair of related security credentials:
Access Key ID (a 20-character, alphanumeric sequence)
For example: 00627471SOVYZEXAMPLE
Secret Access Key (a 40-character sequence)
For example: 8Jhi60+EWUUbbUShTEsjTxqQtM8UKvsM6XAjdA==
These are your AWS Security Credentials.
Your Secret Access Key is a secret, which only you and AWS should know. It is important to keep it confidential to protect your account. Store it securely in a safe place. Never include it in your requests to AWS, and never e-mail it to anyone. Do not share it outside your organization, even if an inquiry appears to come from AWS or Amazon.com. No one who legitimately represents Amazon will ever ask you for your Secret Access Key.
Never embed your Secret Access Key into client-side applications.
The Access Key ID is associated with your AWS account. You include it in AWS service requests to identify yourself as the sender of the request.
The Access Key ID is not a secret, and anyone could use your Access Key ID in requests to AWS. To provide proof that you truly are the sender of the request, you must also include a digital signature. AWS uses the Access Key ID in the request to look up your Secret Access Key and then calculates a digital signature with the key. If the signature AWS calculates matches the signature you sent, the request is considered authentic. Otherwise, the request fails authentication and is not processed. For more details, see HMAC-SHA Signature.