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RHEL 8 must ensure the password complexity module is enabled in the system-auth file.


Finding ID Version Rule ID IA Controls Severity
V-251713 RHEL-08-020101 SV-251713r810407_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. RHEL 8 uses "pwquality" as a mechanism to enforce password complexity. This is set in both: /etc/pam.d/password-auth /etc/pam.d/system-auth
Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 Security Technical Implementation Guide 2022-06-15


Check Text ( C-55150r810405_chk )
Verify the operating system uses "pwquality" to enforce the password complexity rules.

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

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

password required pam_pwquality.so

If the command does not return a line containing the value "pam_pwquality.so", or the line is commented out, this is a finding.
Fix Text (F-55104r810406_fix)
Configure the operating system to use "pwquality" to enforce password complexity rules.

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