Password Generator Protocol (RFC0972)
Original Publication Date: 1986-Jan-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2019-Feb-14
Internet Society Requests For Comment (RFCs)
This RFC specifies a standard for the ARPA Internet community. The Password Generator Service (PWDGEN) provides a set of six randomly generated eight-character "words" with a reasonable level of pronounceability, using a multi-level algorithm. Hosts on the ARPA Internet that choose to implement a password generator service are expected to adopt and implement this standard.
Network Working Group F. Wancho Request for Comments: 972 WSMR January 1986
Password Generator Protocol
STATUS OF THIS MEMO
This RFC specifies a standard for the ARPA Internet community. Hosts on the ARPA Internet that choose to implement a Password Generator Protocol (PWDGEN) are expected to adopt and implement this standard. Distribution of this memo is unlimited.
Many security-conscious host administrators are becoming increasingly aware that user-selected login passwords are too easy to guess for even casual penetration attempts. Some sites have implemented dictionary lookup techniques in their password programs to prevent ordinary words from being used. Others have implemented some variant of a randomly generated password with mixed success. The problem arises from the fact that such passwords are difficult to remember because they cannot be pronounced or are based on a relatively short cycle pseudo-random number generator.
A version of the PWDGEN algorithm briefly described below has been in use for several years at a small number of sites in the Internet. Interest has recently been expressed at porting this algorithm to other sites. However, the relatively short cycle and the resulting randomness of the pseudo-random number generator available on these sites tends to interfere with the intended result of minimizing the potential duplication of passwords both within a site and across sites when a user has access to more than one site.
The PWDGEN Service described herein provides a means for sites to offer a list of possible passwords for the user to choose one from the first set, or optionally select from another set. With more than one site offering this service, it is then possible to randomly select which site to use and have multiple fallback sites should that site be unavailable.
The PWDGEN Service provides a set of six randomly generated eight-cha...