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The /etc/passwd file must be owned by root.


Finding ID Version Rule ID IA Controls Severity
V-217877 RHEL-06-000039 SV-217877r505923_rule Medium
The "/etc/passwd" file contains information about the users that are configured on the system. Protection of this file is critical for system security.
Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6 Security Technical Implementation Guide 2020-09-03


Check Text ( C-19358r376646_chk )
To check the ownership of "/etc/passwd", run the command:

$ ls -l /etc/passwd

If properly configured, the output should indicate the following owner: "root"
If it does not, this is a finding.
Fix Text (F-19356r376647_fix)
To properly set the owner of "/etc/passwd", run the command:

# chown root /etc/passwd