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SSH: What is it?

Most of the data on the internet is transmitted as plain text, and anybody with a small amount of technical skills can capture and view it (Barrett & Silverman, 2001). To solve this problem, the SSH (Secure Shell) protocol was created to create a secure channel through which traffic between a client and server can be encrypted and transmitted without fear of a third-party capturing and reading the transmission (“OpenSSH,” 2011).

SSH replaces some established Windows and UNIX utilities in favor of its own suite of more-secure tools. Telnet is a Windows utility that facilitates remote login to a system, but it transmits all its data in clear text. SSH replaces this utility, as well as the UNIX counterpart rlogin (“OpenSSH,” 2011). Another program in the SSH suite called scp replaces the insecure FTP and rcp file-transmission commands.

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