I am using http web service to break permission inheritance for current item.for that I am using the following sequence.

1) fetching Request Digest value using following rest api endpoint:

_spPageContextInfo.webAbsoluteUrl + "_api/contextinfo"

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I am getting response code :OK for above query

2) Break Permission Inheritance using following endpoint(I am using above request digest in this query):

_spPageContextInfo.webAbsoluteUrl + "/_api/web/lists/getByTitle('listname')/items(itemId)/breakroleinheritance(copyRoleAssignments=true, clearSubscopes=true)"

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I am getting response code :Forbidden for above query

Edit :Things I have already tried

  1. activating feature "workflow can use app permissions".
  2. grant full permissions for workflow.
  3. adding action in app step.
  • Forbidden means the account making the request doesn't have permission to do that. Oct 3, 2018 at 18:20
  • What if the account is site collection admin ? Oct 3, 2018 at 18:21
  • Is it subsite or site collection where you are creating your workflow? Aug 8, 2020 at 8:39
  • Also share the XML you have used in the Permission Request XML field to grant full control permission to the workflow.. Aug 8, 2020 at 8:42

3 Answers 3


Please try enabling this site feature which will allow the workflow to make modifications to list.

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  • I have already activated this feature Oct 4, 2018 at 1:43

When I do it, I simply just use the parameter true like this:


This haven't failed me yet.

  • I am using this query in designer workflow. I have tried the above URL too. Oct 4, 2018 at 8:28
  • I do that as well. Simply replace "breakroleinheritance(copyRoleAssignments=true, clearSubscopes=true)" with "breakroleinheritance(true)" and call the endpoint like any other REST endpoint from a workflow
    – Morten K
    Oct 4, 2018 at 8:29
  • That's true. but right now I am getting "Response : {"error":{"code":"-2147024891, System.UnauthorizedAccessException","message":{"lang":"en-US","value":"Access denied. You do not have permission to perform this action or access this resource."}}" Oct 4, 2018 at 8:33
  • You also have an x-request header I normally don't use. I only use accept and content-type headers. This at least is a known working format.
    – Morten K
    Oct 4, 2018 at 8:39
  • are you using app step or form digest value ? right now I am trying with app step only. Do we need to specify form digest value for app step ? Oct 4, 2018 at 8:43

For reference I think the correct solution is to give the workflow app the necessary permissions

In summary

  • In Manage Site Feature, activate feature "workflow can use app step".
  • Now go to Site settings -> Site App Permissions , there you will find an entry for Workflow i.t|clientID@tenantID.
  • Copy the Client ID and give it full control over site/list etc. To know how to give workflow full access please follow this blog. SharePoint Blog: Item Level Permission - SPD Workflow 2013 - Part 2 . follow same steps as mentioned for SPD workflow.
    • Add the REST call into the App Step.

The reference is for Nintex but it still applies to OOTB workflows.

See https://community.nintex.com/t5/Nintex-for-Office-365/REST-API-Break-Role-Inheritance-Nintex-O365-not-working/m-p/59359


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