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    SubjectRe: 2.4.22-pre7: are security issues solved?
    Herbert Xu  wrote:
    >On Wed, Jul 23, 2003 at 03:35:05AM -0700, David S. Miller wrote:
    >> If I know your password is 7 characters I have a smaller
    >> space of passwords to search to just brute-force it.
    >It's much smaller if you didn't know that it was at most 7 characters

    Yes, if I know I want to attack David Miller's password,
    and I'm going to keep trying until I succeed, then knowing
    the length of his password doesn't help much. However, if
    I'm on a multi-user system and I just want to crack any
    password for any one of the users on that system, then
    knowing the lengths of passwords does help, because I can
    focus my effort on those users with the shortest passwords.
    Thus, revealing password lengths might heighten the risk of
    password guessing (even if only by a small factor).
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