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OL 8 systems below version 8.4 must ensure the password complexity module in the system-auth file is configured for three retries or less.


Finding ID Version Rule ID IA Controls Severity
V-252658 OL08-00-020102 SV-252658r818770_rule Medium
Use of a complex password helps to increase the time and resources required to compromise the password. Password complexity, or strength, is a measure of the effectiveness of a password in resisting attempts at guessing and brute-force attacks. "pwquality" enforces complex password construction configuration and has the ability to limit brute-force attacks on the system. OL 8 utilizes "pwquality" as a mechanism to enforce password complexity. This is set in both: /etc/pam.d/password-auth /etc/pam.d/system-auth By limiting the number of attempts to meet the pwquality module complexity requirements before returning with an error, the system will audit abnormal attempts at password changes.
Oracle Linux 8 Security Technical Implementation Guide 2022-12-06


Check Text ( C-56114r818768_chk )
Note: This requirement applies to OL versions 8.0 through 8.3. If the system is OL version 8.4 or newer, this requirement is not applicable.

Verify the operating system is configured to limit the "pwquality" retry option to 3.

Check for the use of the "pwquality" retry option in the system-auth file with the following command:

$ sudo cat /etc/pam.d/system-auth | grep pam_pwquality

password required pam_pwquality.so retry=3

If the value of "retry" is set to "0" or greater than "3", this is a finding.
Fix Text (F-56064r818769_fix)
Configure the operating system to limit the "pwquality" retry option to 3.

Add the following line to the "/etc/pam.d/system-auth" file(or modify the line to have the required value):

password required pam_pwquality.so retry=3