SFTP: The Secure File Transfer Protocol

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Executive Summary

The Secure File Transfer Protocol, or SFTP, is not based on the industry standard File Transfer Protocol (FTP), as defined in RFC-959. It is a completely distinct file transfer specification developed by the Secure Shell Working Group and SSH Communications Security Corp. Built on the Secure Shell (SSH) Protocol, the purpose of the protocol is to provide the ability to have secure, efficient, file transfer occurring over an SSH encrypted pipe or tunnel. The general idea is to connect to a remote SSH/SFTP server on port 22, perform a secure SSH v2 handshake with the remote server, and then all future communications would take place through the existing encrypted tunnel.

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