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File Transfer Protocol (FTP) is a TCP/IP protocol which transfers files between FTP servers and clients (usually your computer.) This is what we all used for many years until the web became so malevolent. However FTP is highly vulnerable for eavesdropping, Man-in-the-Middle attacks & general hacking attempts. The biggest problem with FTP is that the server can only handle usernames and passwords in plain text.
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File Transfer Protocol Secure (FTPS) and Secure File Transfer Protocol (SFTP)* are interactive file transfer protocols similar in nature to FTP but secure. They encrypt all traffic between the client and the SFP server. In addition, most FTPS or SFTP clients support additional features such as root access, public key authentication and compression. This is what we all should be using now.
A couple free SFTP programs are:
• FileZilla SFTP
• WinSCP SFTP for Windows
* Many prefer SFTP (over FTPS) because it compresses data into packets, using less bandwidth, making it much faster.
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