Set PAM''s Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth

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Description

The PAM system service can be configured to only store encrypted representations of passwords. In /etc/pam.d/password-auth, the password section of the file controls which PAM modules execute during a password change. Set the pam_unix.so module in the password section to include the argument sha512, as shown below:

password    sufficient    pam_unix.so sha512 other arguments...

This will help ensure when local users change their passwords, hashes for the new passwords will be generated using the SHA-512 algorithm. This is the default.

Rationale

Passwords need to be protected at all times, and encryption is the standard method for protecting passwords. If passwords are not encrypted, they can be plainly read (i.e., clear text) and easily compromised. Passwords that are encrypted with a weak algorithm are no more protected than if they are kepy in plain text.

This setting ensures user and group account administration utilities are configured to store only encrypted representations of passwords. Additionally, the crypt_style configuration option ensures the use of a strong hashing algorithm that makes password cracking attacks more difficult.

Remediation

Shell script

The following script can be run on the host to remediate the issue.

#!/bin/bash

# Remediation is applicable only in certain platforms
if rpm --quiet -q pam; then

if [ -e "/etc/pam.d/password-auth" ] ; then
    PAM_FILE_PATH="/etc/pam.d/password-auth"
    if [ -f /usr/bin/authselect ]; then
        
        if ! authselect check; then
        echo "
        authselect integrity check failed. Remediation aborted!
        This remediation could not be applied because an authselect profile was not selected or the selected profile is not intact.
        It is not recommended to manually edit the PAM files when authselect tool is available.
        In cases where the default authselect profile does not cover a specific demand, a custom authselect profile is recommended."
        exit 1
        fi

        CURRENT_PROFILE=$(authselect current -r | awk '{ print $1 }')
        # If not already in use, a custom profile is created preserving the enabled features.
        if [[ ! $CURRENT_PROFILE == custom/* ]]; then
            ENABLED_FEATURES=$(authselect current | tail -n+3 | awk '{ print $2 }')
            authselect create-profile hardening -b $CURRENT_PROFILE
            CURRENT_PROFILE="custom/hardening"
            
            authselect apply-changes -b --backup=before-hardening-custom-profile
            authselect select $CURRENT_PROFILE
            for feature in $ENABLED_FEATURES; do
                authselect enable-feature $feature;
            done
            
            authselect apply-changes -b --backup=after-hardening-custom-profile
        fi
        PAM_FILE_NAME=$(basename "/etc/pam.d/password-auth")
        PAM_FILE_PATH="/etc/authselect/$CURRENT_PROFILE/$PAM_FILE_NAME"

        authselect apply-changes -b
    fi
    if ! grep -qP '^\s*password\s+'"sufficient"'\s+pam_unix.so\s*.*' "$PAM_FILE_PATH"; then
            # Line matching group + control + module was not found. Check group + module.
            if [ "$(grep -cP '^\s*password\s+.*\s+pam_unix.so\s*' "$PAM_FILE_PATH")" -eq 1 ]; then
                # The control is updated only if one single line matches.
                sed -i -E --follow-symlinks 's/^(\s*password\s+).*(\bpam_unix.so.*)/\1'"sufficient"' \2/' "$PAM_FILE_PATH"
            else
                echo 'password    '"sufficient"'    pam_unix.so' >> "$PAM_FILE_PATH"
            fi
        fi
        # Check the option
        if ! grep -qP '^\s*password\s+'"sufficient"'\s+pam_unix.so\s*.*\ssha512\b' "$PAM_FILE_PATH"; then
            sed -i -E --follow-symlinks '/\s*password\s+'"sufficient"'\s+pam_unix.so.*/ s/$/ sha512/' "$PAM_FILE_PATH"
        fi
    if [ -f /usr/bin/authselect ]; then
        
        authselect apply-changes -b
    fi
else
    echo "/etc/pam.d/password-auth was not found" >&2
fi

else
    >&2 echo 'Remediation is not applicable, nothing was done'
fi

Ansible playbook

The following playbook can be run with Ansible to remediate the issue.

- name: Gather the package facts
  package_facts:
    manager: auto
  tags:
  - CCE-85943-9
  - CJIS-5.6.2.2
  - DISA-STIG-RHEL-07-010200
  - NIST-800-171-3.13.11
  - NIST-800-53-CM-6(a)
  - NIST-800-53-IA-5(1)(c)
  - NIST-800-53-IA-5(c)
  - PCI-DSS-Req-8.2.1
  - configure_strategy
  - low_complexity
  - medium_disruption
  - medium_severity
  - no_reboot_needed
  - set_password_hashing_algorithm_passwordauth

- name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Check if /etc/pam.d/password-auth
    file is present
  ansible.builtin.stat:
    path: /etc/pam.d/password-auth
  register: result_pam_file_present
  when: '"pam" in ansible_facts.packages'
  tags:
  - CCE-85943-9
  - CJIS-5.6.2.2
  - DISA-STIG-RHEL-07-010200
  - NIST-800-171-3.13.11
  - NIST-800-53-CM-6(a)
  - NIST-800-53-IA-5(1)(c)
  - NIST-800-53-IA-5(c)
  - PCI-DSS-Req-8.2.1
  - configure_strategy
  - low_complexity
  - medium_disruption
  - medium_severity
  - no_reboot_needed
  - set_password_hashing_algorithm_passwordauth

- name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Check the proper remediation
    for the system
  block:

  - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Define the PAM file
      to be edited as a local fact
    ansible.builtin.set_fact:
      pam_file_path: /etc/pam.d/password-auth

  - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Check if system relies
      on authselect tool
    ansible.builtin.stat:
      path: /usr/bin/authselect
    register: result_authselect_present

  - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Ensure authselect
      custom profile is used if authselect is present
    block:

    - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Check integrity
        of authselect current profile
      ansible.builtin.command:
        cmd: authselect check
      register: result_authselect_check_cmd
      changed_when: false
      failed_when: false

    - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Informative message
        based on the authselect integrity check result
      ansible.builtin.assert:
        that:
        - result_authselect_check_cmd.rc == 0
        fail_msg:
        - authselect integrity check failed. Remediation aborted!
        - This remediation could not be applied because an authselect profile was
          not selected or the selected profile is not intact.
        - It is not recommended to manually edit the PAM files when authselect tool
          is available.
        - In cases where the default authselect profile does not cover a specific
          demand, a custom authselect profile is recommended.
        success_msg:
        - authselect integrity check passed

    - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Get authselect
        current profile
      ansible.builtin.shell:
        cmd: authselect current -r | awk '{ print $1 }'
      register: result_authselect_profile
      changed_when: false
      when:
      - result_authselect_check_cmd is success

    - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Define the current
        authselect profile as a local fact
      ansible.builtin.set_fact:
        authselect_current_profile: '{{ result_authselect_profile.stdout }}'
        authselect_custom_profile: '{{ result_authselect_profile.stdout }}'
      when:
      - result_authselect_profile is not skipped
      - result_authselect_profile.stdout is match("custom/")

    - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Define the new
        authselect custom profile as a local fact
      ansible.builtin.set_fact:
        authselect_current_profile: '{{ result_authselect_profile.stdout }}'
        authselect_custom_profile: custom/hardening
      when:
      - result_authselect_profile is not skipped
      - result_authselect_profile.stdout is not match("custom/")

    - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Get authselect
        current features to also enable them in the custom profile
      ansible.builtin.shell:
        cmd: authselect current | tail -n+3 | awk '{ print $2 }'
      register: result_authselect_features
      changed_when: false
      when:
      - result_authselect_profile is not skipped
      - authselect_current_profile is not match("custom/")

    - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Check if any custom
        profile with the same name was already created
      ansible.builtin.stat:
        path: /etc/authselect/{{ authselect_custom_profile }}
      register: result_authselect_custom_profile_present
      changed_when: false
      when:
      - authselect_current_profile is not match("custom/")

    - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Create an authselect
        custom profile based on the current profile
      ansible.builtin.command:
        cmd: authselect create-profile hardening -b {{ authselect_current_profile
          }}
      when:
      - result_authselect_check_cmd is success
      - authselect_current_profile is not match("custom/")
      - not result_authselect_custom_profile_present.stat.exists

    - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Ensure authselect
        changes are applied
      ansible.builtin.command:
        cmd: authselect apply-changes -b --backup=before-hardening-custom-profile
      when:
      - result_authselect_check_cmd is success
      - result_authselect_profile is not skipped
      - authselect_current_profile is not match("custom/")
      - authselect_custom_profile is not match(authselect_current_profile)

    - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Ensure the authselect
        custom profile is selected
      ansible.builtin.command:
        cmd: authselect select {{ authselect_custom_profile }}
      register: result_pam_authselect_select_profile
      when:
      - result_authselect_check_cmd is success
      - result_authselect_profile is not skipped
      - authselect_current_profile is not match("custom/")
      - authselect_custom_profile is not match(authselect_current_profile)

    - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Restore the authselect
        features in the custom profile
      ansible.builtin.command:
        cmd: authselect enable-feature {{ item }}
      loop: '{{ result_authselect_features.stdout_lines }}'
      register: result_pam_authselect_restore_features
      when:
      - result_authselect_profile is not skipped
      - result_authselect_features is not skipped
      - result_pam_authselect_select_profile is not skipped

    - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Ensure authselect
        changes are applied
      ansible.builtin.command:
        cmd: authselect apply-changes -b --backup=after-hardening-custom-profile
      when:
      - result_authselect_check_cmd is success
      - result_authselect_profile is not skipped
      - result_pam_authselect_restore_features is not skipped

    - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Change the PAM
        file to be edited according to the custom authselect profile
      ansible.builtin.set_fact:
        pam_file_path: /etc/authselect/{{ authselect_custom_profile }}/{{ pam_file_path
          | basename }}
    when:
    - result_authselect_present.stat.exists

  - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Check if expected
      PAM module line is present in {{ pam_file_path }}
    ansible.builtin.lineinfile:
      path: '{{ pam_file_path }}'
      regexp: ^\s*password\s+{{ 'sufficient' | regex_escape() }}\s+pam_unix.so\s*.*
      state: absent
    check_mode: true
    changed_when: false
    register: result_pam_line_present

  - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Include or update
      the PAM module line in {{ pam_file_path }}
    block:

    - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Check if required
        PAM module line is present in {{ pam_file_path }} with different control
      ansible.builtin.lineinfile:
        path: '{{ pam_file_path }}'
        regexp: ^\s*password\s+.*\s+pam_unix.so\s*
        state: absent
      check_mode: true
      changed_when: false
      register: result_pam_line_other_control_present

    - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Ensure the correct
        control for the required PAM module line in {{ pam_file_path }}
      ansible.builtin.replace:
        dest: '{{ pam_file_path }}'
        regexp: ^(\s*password\s+).*(\bpam_unix.so.*)
        replace: \1sufficient \2
      register: result_pam_module_edit
      when:
      - result_pam_line_other_control_present.found == 1

    - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Ensure the required
        PAM module line is included in {{ pam_file_path }}
      ansible.builtin.lineinfile:
        dest: '{{ pam_file_path }}'
        line: password    sufficient    pam_unix.so
      register: result_pam_module_add
      when:
      - result_pam_line_other_control_present.found == 0 or result_pam_line_other_control_present.found
        > 1

    - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Ensure authselect
        changes are applied
      ansible.builtin.command:
        cmd: authselect apply-changes -b
      when:
      - result_authselect_present is defined
      - result_authselect_present.stat.exists
      - |-
        (result_pam_module_add is defined and result_pam_module_add.changed)
         or (result_pam_module_edit is defined and result_pam_module_edit.changed)
    when:
    - result_pam_line_present.found is defined
    - result_pam_line_present.found == 0

  - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Check if the required
      PAM module option is present in {{ pam_file_path }}
    ansible.builtin.lineinfile:
      path: '{{ pam_file_path }}'
      regexp: ^\s*password\s+{{ 'sufficient' | regex_escape() }}\s+pam_unix.so\s*.*\ssha512\b
      state: absent
    check_mode: true
    changed_when: false
    register: result_pam_module_sha512_option_present

  - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Ensure the "sha512"
      PAM option for "pam_unix.so" is included in {{ pam_file_path }}
    ansible.builtin.lineinfile:
      path: '{{ pam_file_path }}'
      backrefs: true
      regexp: ^(\s*password\s+{{ 'sufficient' | regex_escape() }}\s+pam_unix.so.*)
      line: \1 sha512
      state: present
    register: result_pam_sha512_add
    when:
    - result_pam_module_sha512_option_present.found == 0

  - name: Set PAM's Password Hashing Algorithm - password-auth - Ensure authselect
      changes are applied
    ansible.builtin.command:
      cmd: authselect apply-changes -b
    when:
    - result_authselect_present.stat.exists
    - |-
      (result_pam_sha512_add is defined and result_pam_sha512_add.changed)
       or (result_pam_sha512_edit is defined and result_pam_sha512_edit.changed)
  when:
  - '"pam" in ansible_facts.packages'
  - result_pam_file_present.stat.exists
  tags:
  - CCE-85943-9
  - CJIS-5.6.2.2
  - DISA-STIG-RHEL-07-010200
  - NIST-800-171-3.13.11
  - NIST-800-53-CM-6(a)
  - NIST-800-53-IA-5(1)(c)
  - NIST-800-53-IA-5(c)
  - PCI-DSS-Req-8.2.1
  - configure_strategy
  - low_complexity
  - medium_disruption
  - medium_severity
  - no_reboot_needed
  - set_password_hashing_algorithm_passwordauth