Introduction to Google Cloud Identity and Access Management (IAM)

Google Cloud Identity and Access Management (IAM) is a powerful service that allows you to manage and control access to your Google Cloud resources. In this guide, we'll explore the fundamentals of Google Cloud IAM and provide a sample Python code snippet for managing IAM policies using the Google Cloud IAM API.

Key Concepts

Before we dive into the code, let's understand some key concepts related to Google Cloud IAM:

  • Identity: An identity can be a Google Account, a service account, or a Google Group. It represents a user or system that needs access to Google Cloud resources.
  • Resource: A resource is an object in Google Cloud, such as a virtual machine, a Cloud Storage bucket, or a BigQuery dataset.
  • Policy: A policy defines who (identity) has what type of access (permissions) to a resource.

Sample Code: Managing IAM Policies

Here's a sample Python code snippet for managing IAM policies using the Google Cloud IAM API. To use this code, you need to set up a Google Cloud project and install the Google Cloud IAM Python client library:

from google.oauth2 import service_account
from googleapiclient.discovery import build
# Define the resource and project ID
resource_name = 'projects/your-project-id'
project_id = 'your-project-id'
# Load the service account credentials
credentials = service_account.Credentials.from_service_account_file(
# Create the IAM service client
iam_service = build('iam', 'v1', credentials=credentials)
# Define a new member and role
new_member = ''
new_role = 'roles/editor'
# Get the current policy
policy = iam_service.projects().getIamPolicy(resource=resource_name).execute()
# Add the new member and role to the policy
if 'bindings' not in policy:
policy['bindings'] = []
'role': new_role,
'members': [new_member],
# Update the policy
updated_policy = iam_service.projects().setIamPolicy(
body={'policy': policy}
print('Policy updated:')

Replace `'your-project-id'`, `'your-service-account-key.json'`, `''`, and `'roles/editor'` with your project ID, service account key file, user email, and desired role. This code loads the IAM policy for a project, adds a new member with a role, and updates the policy.


Google Cloud IAM is a critical component of managing security and access control for your Google Cloud resources. By utilizing the provided code snippet and understanding the key concepts, you can efficiently manage and control access to your resources.