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Table Of Contents  CertiGuide to Network+
 9  Chapter 1000:  Security in the Real World

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VI  Passwords

Sending passwords over the network is a recognized security risk, since passwords can be viewed by anyone using a network analyzer to inspect packet contents, yet many user authentication systems still do this – most, fortunately, in an encrypted form. Today, most authentication schemes allow for encrypting the password before sending it over the wire, or using some sort of challenge/response system that doesn’t require transmitting the password at all. Some legacy technologies like telnet logins, however, do not encrypt the password prior to transmission.

Yes, telnet really does send the password out onto the Internet without encrypting it. This is one reason that vanilla telnet and rlogin logins, common when dealing with Linux and UNIX systems, are being phased out in favor of ssh (Secure Shell) logins.

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