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RHEL 8 must be configured in the password-auth file to prohibit password reuse for a minimum of five generations.


Overview

Finding ID Version Rule ID IA Controls Severity
V-230368 RHEL-08-020220 SV-230368r810414_rule Medium
Description
Password complexity, or strength, is a measure of the effectiveness of a password in resisting attempts at guessing and brute-force attacks. If the information system or application allows the user to reuse their password consecutively when that password has exceeded its defined lifetime, the end result is a password that is not changed per policy requirements. RHEL 8 uses "pwhistory" consecutively as a mechanism to prohibit password reuse. This is set in both: /etc/pam.d/password-auth /etc/pam.d/system-auth. Note that manual changes to the listed files may be overwritten by the "authselect" program.
STIG Date
Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 Security Technical Implementation Guide 2022-06-15

Details

Check Text ( C-33037r809290_chk )
Verify the operating system is configured in the password-auth file to prohibit password reuse for a minimum of five generations.

Check for the value of the "remember" argument in "/etc/pam.d/password-auth" with the following command:

$ sudo grep -i remember /etc/pam.d/password-auth

password required pam_pwhistory.so use_authtok remember=5 retry=3

If the line containing "pam_pwhistory.so" does not have the "remember" module argument set, is commented out, or the value of the "remember" module argument is set to less than "5", this is a finding.
Fix Text (F-33012r809291_fix)
Configure the operating system in the password-auth file to prohibit password reuse for a minimum of five generations.

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

password required pam_pwhistory.so use_authtok remember=5 retry=3