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An Extension to HTTP : Digest Access Authentication (RFC2069)

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000002620D
Original Publication Date: 1997-Jan-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2019-Feb-16
Document File: 18 page(s) / 25K

Publishing Venue

Internet Society Requests For Comment (RFCs)

Related People

J. Franks: AUTHOR [+6]

Related Documents

10.17487/RFC2069: DOI

Abstract

The protocol referred to as "HTTP/1.0" includes the specification for a Basic Access Authentication scheme. This scheme is not considered to be a secure method of user authentication, as the user name and password are passed over the network as clear text. A specification for a different authentication scheme is needed to address this severe limitation. This document provides specification for such a scheme, referred to as "Digest Access Authentication". [STANDARDS-TRACK]

This text was extracted from a PDF file.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 10% of the total text.

Network Working Group J. Franks Request for Comments: 2069 Northwestern University Category: Standards Track P. Hallam-Baker CERN J. Hostetler Spyglass, Inc. P. Leach Microsoft Corporation A. Luotonen Netscape Communications Corporation E. Sink Spyglass, Inc. L. Stewart Open Market, Inc. January 1997

An Extension to HTTP : Digest Access Authentication

Status of this Memo

This document specifies an Internet standards track protocol for the Internet community, and requests discussion and suggestions for improvements. Please refer to the current edition of the "Internet Official Protocol Standards" (STD 1) for the standardization state and status of this protocol. Distribution of this memo is unlimited.

Abstract

The protocol referred to as "HTTP/1.0" includes the specification for a Basic Access Authentication scheme. This scheme is not considered to be a secure method of user authentication, as the user name and password are passed over the network as clear text. A specification for a different authentication scheme is needed to address this severe limitation. This document provides specification for such a scheme, referred to as "Digest Access Authentication". Like Basic, Digest access authentication verifies that both parties to a communication know a shared secret (a password); unlike Basic, this verification can be done without sending the password in the clear, which is Basic’s biggest weakness. As with most other authentication protocols, the greatest sources of risks are usually found not in the core protocol itself but in policies and procedures surrounding its use.

Franks, et. al. Standards Track [Page 1]

RFC 2069 Digest Access Authentication January 1997

Table of Contents

INTRODUCTION...................................................... 2 1.1 PURPOSE .................................................... 2 1.2 OVERALL OPERATION .......................................... 3 1.3 REPRESENTATION OF DIGEST VALUES ............................ 3 1.4 LIMITATIONS ................................................ 3 2. DIGEST ACCESS AUTHENTICATION SCHEME............................ 3 2.1 SPECIFICATION OF DIGEST HEADERS ............................. 3 2.1.1 THE WWW-AUTHENTICATE RESPONSE HEADER ..................... 4 2.1.2 THE AUTHORIZATION REQUEST HEADER ......................... 6 2.1.3 THE AUTHENTICATION-INFO HEADER ........................... 9 2.2 DIGEST OPERATION ............................................ 10 2.3 SECURITY PROTOCOL NEGOTIATION ............................... 10 2.4 EXAMPLE ..................................................... 11 2.5 PROXY-AUTHENTICATION AND PROXY-AUTHORIZATION ................ 11 3. SECURITY CONSIDERATIONS........................................ 12 3.1 COMPARISON WITH BASIC AUTHENTICATION ........................ 13 3.2 REPLAY ATTACKS .............................................. 13 3.3 MAN IN THE MIDDLE ........................................... 14 3.4 SPOOFING BY COUNTERFEIT SERVERS ..........................

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