// Let’s make you logo
serverless / Blog / Guides & Tutorials / AWS Cognito: Improving System Resilience While Being Commercially Reasonable

AWS Cognito: Improving System Resilience While Being Commercially Reasonable

published Mar 04, 2024

AWS Cognito: Improving System Resilience While Being Commercially Reasonable

User data security and seamless authentication are paramount for businesses to manage identity and access effectively. This is where Cognito AWS steps in as a powerful tool. Designed to simplify user authentication and authorization processes, AWS Cognito offers a range of features that streamline user management while enhancing security measures.

Team Serverless excels in crafting AWS cloud applications, seamlessly integrating AWS Cognito for authentication and authorization processes. Whether you're looking to integrate AWS Cognito for secure user authentication or seeking expert guidance on cloud architecture, our comprehensive suite of services ensures your business thrives in the cloud-native environment.

This tutorial delves into the AWS Cognito meaning, exploring its functionalities and use case examples. Understanding AWS Cognito's basics will help you build a secure authentication system and improve user experience across various applications. Let's uncover more AWS Cognito benefits for businesses.

What Is AWS Cognito?

Amazon Web Services (AWS) Cognito definition states that it is a comprehensive service offered by Amazon that simplifies user authentication and management for mobile and web applications. 

This service enables developers to effortlessly incorporate user sign-up and authentication processes into their apps. Cognito allows even freelance tech professionals to authenticate users through external identity providers. It enables granting temporary Cognito security credentials to access backend resources in AWS or any service behind Amazon API Gateway.

One of the standout features of AWS Cognito is its compatibility with various external identity providers, including those supporting SAML or OpenID Connect, as well as popular social providers like Facebook, Twitter, and Amazon. Developers can integrate their identity provider, tailoring authentication methods to suit their specific requirements.

Beyond the Cognito authentication feature, it facilitates seamless data synchronization across a user's devices. Users have a consistent app experience regardless of device transitions or upgrades. This synchronization capability allows apps to store data locally on users' devices, enabling offline functionality and automatically syncing data once the device is back online.

AWS Cognito frees the developers from the burden of building, securing, and scaling complex user management systems. This AWS authentication service abstracts away the complexities of data synchronization, allowing developers to concentrate on delivering value to users across different platforms and devices.

You can read the official AWS Cognito documentation for more details. 


Kyrylo Kozak

CEO, Co-founder
Get your project estimation!

What is Amazon Cognito Used For?

Amazon Cognito is a robust solution for facilitating simple, secure user authentication, authorization, and user management across web and mobile applications. It streamlines the process of user sign-up, sign-in, and access control. AWS Cognito provides the flexibility to integrate various authentication methods, including username-password pairs and third-party providers such as Facebook, Google, or Apple.

With Amazon Cognito, developers can achieve the following:

  • Effortlessly add AWS user authentication: Cognito offers a built-in user interface (UI) and straightforward configuration options. It enables developers to seamlessly incorporate user sign-up, sign-in, and access control functionalities into their apps.
  • Federate identities from social providers: Developers can utilize Cognito to federate user identities from popular social identity providers. It allows users to authenticate using their existing social accounts.
  • Synchronize data across devices: Cognito AWS facilitates the synchronization of user data across multiple devices and applications. It ensures consistency in user experience regardless of the used device.
  • Provide Secure Access to AWS Services: Cognito enables defining roles and mapping users to different roles within the service. This way, developers can grant secure access to other AWS services within their apps, enhancing security measures.

Developers can focus on creating innovative applications and websites by offloading authentication requirements to Amazon Cognito. This approach accelerates the development process, shortens release cycles, and speeds up the product’s time to market and time to value.

As an integral part of the AWS ecosystem, Cognito seamlessly integrates into the AWS Management Console. It provides developers with centralized access to manage their Cognito accounts, billing information, and other services within the AWS infrastructure.

Main Benefits of Using AWS Cognito

AWS Cognito is a pivotal tool in modern app development. The core benefits that AWS Cognito offers empower developers to create secure, scalable, and user-centric applications.

AWS User Authentication and Authorization

AWS Cognito provides a secure user authentication and authorization service. Users can sign up or sign in to your app with their preferred social identity providers, such as Facebook, Google, and Amazon. The service also supports multi-factor authentication, adding an extra Cognito security layer to your application.

User Management

The Cognito system creates and manages user accounts. They can be created manually, but users also can sign up themselves. Cognito also provides APIs that enable you to manage user accounts programmatically.

Secure Access to AWS Resources

Cognito integrates with AWS IAM (Identity and Access Management) to securely access AWS resources. With Cognito, you can authenticate users and generate temporary AWS credentials to access specific AWS resources.


Amazon Cognito is designed to be highly scalable and can handle millions of users. It automatically scales to meet your application's demands and provides high availability and reliability.

Customizable User Experience

With Cognito, you can customize user experience by creating a branded sign-in and sign-up page for your application. You can also tailor Cognito's email templates to communicate with your users.


Cognito is a cost-effective solution for AWS user authentication and authorization. You only pay for what you use, with no upfront costs or minimum fees. Cognito also provides a free tier (for the first 50,000 MAUs) that allows you to get started with the service at no cost.

Integration with Other AWS Services

Cognito integrates with other AWS services, such as Amazon API Gateway, AWS Lambda, and Amazon S3. It allows you to build serverless applications that are highly scalable and cost-effective. If your organization is migrating from Azure to AWS, you can also leverage Cognito to enhance software infrastructure and facilitate a smooth transition. 

Key Features of AWS Cognito

AWS Cognito’s key features make it an indispensable tool for business owners and developers. From its robust password security measures to integration capabilities, AWS Cognito streamlines user authentication and management processes for efficient app development.

Secure Passwords

Amazon Cognito relieves developers of ensuring database protection and securely storing passwords. With compliance standards such as HIPAA, Cognito ensures that sensitive data, like Protected Health Information, remains secure.

OAuth, SAML, and More

AWS Cognito simplifies OAuth integration by providing all necessary functionality, from managing user sessions to authentication tokens, without custom code. Additionally, it handles password reset requests and account validation. Cognito supports integration with various identity providers, including Facebook, Google, and SAML.

Simple Integration

Integration with AWS API Gateway is seamless with Amazon Cognito. It reduces the time required for API validation against a Cognito pool. This streamlined process ensures secure endpoints and minimizes the cost of session validation.

Quick Startup

With AWS Cognito, developers can swiftly set up application authentication. It allows for rapid prototyping and focusing on delivering unique value. Features like Cognito's Hosted UI provide a login page conforming to OAuth standards with minimal effort for quick deployment of authentication mechanisms.

User Pools vs. Identity Pools: What Are the Differences

User pools and identity pools are two pivotal components of Amazon Cognito. The key difference lies in their functionalities. User pools manage user authentication and sign-up processes, while identity pools facilitate access to AWS services with federated identities.

User Pools

User pools are user directories with sign-up and sign-in functionalities for app users. They facilitate authentication through AWS Cognito, social identity providers like Google or Facebook, and SAML identity providers. User pools empower developers with features like compromised credentials checks, email- and phone-based verification, and multifactor authentication (MFA). It ensures stringent security measures for user accounts.

Identity Pools

Identity pools play a distinct role in granting users access to a spectrum of AWS services, from Amazon S3 to DynamoDB. These federated identities support authentication through user pools, federated identity providers, SAML identity providers, and even unauthenticated identities (guest users). Identity pools enable organizations to establish unique user identities and assign granular permissions tailored to specific AWS resources.

User and identity pools cater to different AWS user authentication and access management aspects. They can work independently or in tandem, depending on the requirements and architecture of the application. Understanding the differences between these two components enables developers to create seamless and secure user experiences in their AWS applications.

Amazon Cognito Pool Use Cases

Cognito AWS presents many use cases, allowing developers to streamline user authentication, manage user identities, and grant secure access to AWS resources. From facilitating seamless sign-up and sign-in experiences to enhancing the functionality of applications through identity pools, AWS Cognito offers versatile solutions tailored to diverse development needs.

User Pool Use Cases

Web and mobile application developers can leverage user pools in the following scenarios:

  • Embedding default sign-up and sign-in pages: Embed default sign-up and sign-in pages in client-side applications to streamline the AWS user authentication process.
  • Utilizing typical user management features: Access readily available features to manage user accounts and authentication processes efficiently.
  • Monitoring usage trends and enhancing security: Monitor usage trends and reconstruct sign-in request flows based on user device, location, and IP address.
  • Customizing authentication flows: Build custom authentication flows tailored to user management requirements for flexibility and control over the authentication process.

Identity Pool Use Cases

Web and mobile application developers can make use of identity pools for the following purposes:

  • Granting access to AWS resources: Provide authenticated users with permitted access to various AWS resources, such as Amazon S3 buckets or Amazon DynamoDB tables, for enhanced functionality of applications.
  • Providing temporary access to guest users: Grant temporary default access to unauthenticated guest users. They get limited access to specific AWS resources or functionalities.

You can also read about the use cases of AWS Lambda in our blog. 

AWS Cognito Pricing

The pricing for AWS Cognito follows the pay-as-you-go concept with no minimum charges. If you use Amazon Cognito Identity to create a user pool, you only pay for monthly active users (MAUs). A user is considered an MAU if an identity operation involving that user occurs within a calendar month, such as sign-up, sign-in, token refresh, or password change. Amazon doesn’t charge you for additional sessions or inactive users during that calendar month.

Here's a breakdown of the pricing for AWS Cognito.

Pricing Tier (number of MAUs) Price per MAU ($)
First 50,000 Free
Next 50,000 0.00550
Next 900,000 0.00460
Next 9,000,000 0.00325
Over 10,000,000 0.00250

This pricing model allows for flexibility and scalability as you only pay for the active users utilizing identity operations within your Amazon Cognito user pool.

The Company Experience

The Serverless Team brings extensive AWS cloud development services expertise, including a deep understanding of AWS Cognito. Focusing on crafting tailored applications that prioritize user experience and scalability, we utilize AWS Cognito to ensure seamless authentication and authorization processes for our clients. 

We integrate AWS Cognito into client applications to achieve several key objectives:

  • Tailored authentication flows: We utilize this AWS authentication service to create custom flows. We implement multi-factor authentication (MFA), social login options, or custom sign-up and sign-in pages. Serverless ensures the authentication process aligns perfectly with the client's branding and user experience goals.
  • Scalable user management: With AWS Cognito's user pools, we provide businesses with scalable user management solutions. From managing user accounts to handling password resets and account verifications, we utilize AWS Cognito to streamline administrative tasks and ensure a smooth user experience.
  • Integration with other AWS services: we at Team Serverless integrate Amazon Cognito seamlessly with other AWS services, such as Amazon S3 buckets or DynamoDB tables. Configuring identity pools grants authenticated users access to various AWS resources. It enhances the functionality and scalability of client applications.
  • Enhanced security: AWS Cognito helps us fortify client applications against unauthorized access and data breaches. We implement security best practices such as encryption, token-based authentication, and identity verification to safeguard user data and maintain compliance with industry standards.
  • Cross-device data synchronization: Leveraging Cognito AWS capabilities, we enable seamless data synchronization across users' devices for a consistent user experience. This feature enhances user engagement and satisfaction by allowing users to access their data through multiple platforms.

Serverless empowers businesses to build secure, scalable, and user-friendly applications that drive growth and success by utilizing AWS Cognito in cloud development.

Unlock AWS Cognito's Potential with Serverless

We explained how Cognito AWS provides businesses with secure and scalable user authentication, authorization, and management. It streamlines the sign-up and sign-in processes for seamless data synchronization across devices and access to AWS resources. Cognito enhances user experiences while reducing development time and costs.

The Serverless Team is a seasoned expert in harnessing Amazon Cognito to empower businesses. With extensive experience in AWS cloud development services, our team effectively implements and customizes Cognito to optimize user authentication, authorization, and data synchronization processes. It ensures seamless integration and enhanced user experiences for your apps.

Contact us today to explore how AWS Cognito can benefit your business.


How to use Cognito AWS?

You can use Amazon Cognito to add user sign-up and authentication functionalities to web and mobile apps. Serverless AWS developers can integrate Cognito into your applications by creating user pools or identity pools. It will allow your users to sign in with their preferred authentication method.

How to create a user pool in AWS Cognito?

Go to the Amazon Cognito console to create a user pool in AWS Cognito, choose "Manage User Pools," and then select "Create a user pool." From there, you can configure the user pool settings, including options for user sign-up, authentication, and user attributes.

Why use AWS Cognito?

AWS Cognito provides a secure and scalable solution for user authentication, authorization, and user management in web and mobile applications. It offers built-in support for various authentication methods, such as username and password, social identity providers, and federated identity providers like SAML.

Who should use Amazon Cognito?

Amazon Cognito is suitable for businesses looking to add secure user authentication and user management capabilities to their applications without building and managing these features from scratch. It is ideal for web and mobile app developers prioritizing security, scalability, and ease of integration.

What are the alternatives to AWS Cognito? 

Alternatives to AWS Cognito for user authentication and management include Auth0, Okta, Firebase Authentication, Azure Active Directory B2C, and Stormpath (now part of Okta). These platforms offer features such as social login, MFA, and user management for web and mobile applications.

Rate this article


Subscribe to our newsletter

Subscribe to our newsletter to receive the latest updates on cloud trends, best practices, and case studies, all delivered straight to your inbox.

to receive the latest updates on cloud trends, best practices, and case studies, all delivered straight to your inbox.

// contact

Give us a scoop

Once we get your text, we will email you the next steps. Or you can schedule a call with our CEO for an introductory consultation.

Kyrylo Kozak
Kyrylo Kozak
founder, CEO