Implement Protected Routes in NextJS

Protecting Routes from unauthenticated users is a crucial part of any app.

In this blog, I’ll show you exactly how to do that with your NextJS pages using Higher-Order Components.

There can be several ways of authenticating a user like using cookies or JWT tokens.

I’ll be using JWT token as an example, where the accessToken is stored in the localStorage

Let’s consider a page “/dashboard”. This page should be only accessed by authenticated users.

In our Dashboard.jsx

// pages/dashboard.jsx
import withAuth from "HOC/withAuth.js";
const Dashboard = ({ user }) => {
  return (
    <div>
      <h1>Dashboard</h1>
      <h2>{user.name}</h2>
    </div>
  );
};

export default withAuth(Dashboard);

Notice that we are importing withAuth.jsx and exporting the page by passing it as an argument. That is all we need to do for our pages.


In our withAuth.jsx

I’ll show you two methods of implementations:

  • Method 1: We don’t verify the token
  • Method 2: We verify the token

Method 1: (We don’t verify the token)

// HOC/withAuth.jsx
import { useRouter } from "next/router";
const withAuth = (WrappedComponent) => {
  return (props) => {
    // checks whether we are on client / browser or server.
    if (typeof window !== "undefined") {
      const Router = useRouter();

      const accessToken = localStorage.getItem("accessToken");

      // If there is no access token we redirect to "/" page.
      if (!accessToken) {
        Router.replace("/");
        return null;
      }

      // If this is an accessToken we just render the component that was passed with all its props

      return <WrappedComponent {...props} />;
    }

    // If we are on server, return null
    return null;
  };
};

export default withAuth;

Method 2: We need to verify the token.

// HOC/withAuth.jsx
import { useRouter } from "next/router";
import { useEffect, useState } from "react";
import verifyToken from "services/verifyToken";

const withAuth = (WrappedComponent) => {
  return (props) => {
    const Router = useRouter();
    const [verified, setVerified] = useState(false);

    useEffect(async () => {
      const accessToken = localStorage.getItem("accessToken");
      // if no accessToken was found,then we redirect to "/" page.
      if (!accessToken) {
        Router.replace("/");
      } else {
        // we call the api that verifies the token.
        const data = await verifyToken(accessToken);
        // if token was verified we set the state.
        if (data.verified) {
          setVerified(data.verified);
        } else {
          // If the token was fraud we first remove it from localStorage and then redirect to "/"
          localStorage.removeItem("accessToken");
          Router.replace("/");
        }
      }
    }, []);

    if (verified) {
      return <WrappedComponent {...props} />;
    } else {
      return null;
    }
  };
};

export default withAuth;

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