I have surfed the Internet and have not found much information
about benefits of AAA.
What is AAA? Do we have to use it? Is it kind of encryption?
It is not clear to me. Who can explain?


3 Answers 3


AAA is a big topic and this forum is not the place for a full discussion. But briefly, AAA is a model for controlling access. It specifies how clients (users) are identified (Authentication), what they are allowed to do (Authorization), and how the user's actions are monitored (Accounting). It also specifies the components (functions) for controlling access.

To answer your specific questions: No, you don't have to use it. You can use simple passwords on Cisco routers, for example.

AAA is not an encryption algorithm. But encryption is often used as part of the authentication and authorization functions.

You can read more about AAA in articles like Network Authentication, Authorization, and Accounting: Part One, by Sean Convery.

  • If you want to discuss this, we can always go to chat...
    – Ron Trunk
    Jan 27, 2017 at 18:24
  • How can I access to chat? I dont know those details Jan 29, 2017 at 18:41
  • Sorry. That was directed at @ronroyston
    – Ron Trunk
    Jan 29, 2017 at 22:18

Network access control is a security mechanism for controlling admission to networks and resources. These controls enforce the security policy and employ rules about which resources can be accessed. Network access control ensures the confidentiality and integrity of the network resources. The core of network access control forms the AAA framework, which consists of the following:

■ Authentication establishes the user’s identity and access to the network resources.

■ Authorization describes what can be done and what can be accessed.

■ Accounting provides an audit trail of activities by logging the actions of the user.

Authentication, authorization, and accounting (AAA) are the network security services that help manage the network access control on your network equipment. AAA provides you with methods to secure access to network devices based on more granular techniques than just IP addressing information. For example, you might have a requirement to control access for a group of users regardless of their IP location. With AAA, you can integrate user directories such as LDAP and AD so that groups of users can have the same access levels decoupled from IP location. The implementation of AAA services requires authentication ; however, authorization and accounting are optional services.


AAA defines the model of gaining access to a network,e.g., 4gLTE connections, aDSL PPP, PPPoE cable modem, etc. AAA relates to network access (not application access, e.g. email or Facebook).

The acronym AAA is in measurable decline according to the below Google Trend Views. Note the differences from perspectives of "computers" vs "telecom".

Higher layer (Web) security implementations are trending on the Authentication front, namely SSL/TLS (aka clientless VPN). You see this as a preferred approach in WiFi and VPN access, for example (See Cisco AnyConnect Premium / "clientless SSL VPN").

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  • I really don't understand your comment. It doesn't seem to relate to the question nor your answer.
    – Ron Maupin
    Jan 29, 2017 at 23:16
  • 1
    I still cannot relate your 1099 to AAA.
    – Ron Maupin
    Jan 29, 2017 at 23:24
  • 2
    I'm not the right person, and this is not the right place, to disparage Stack Exchange model. The correct place to bring it up is meta.stackexchange.com. I wouldn't hold my breath about changing it, but I am supposed to work within it.
    – Ron Maupin
    Jan 30, 2017 at 3:56
  • But, that is the model. For instance, votes are supposed to be secret, but there are many on Stack Overflow, and other sites, who insist that every down vote requires the voter to explain the vote. That would be the antithesis of a secret vote. I have no idea who voted down on your answer, and that is the way it is intended. People vote some of my answers down, but I really don't care because that is everyone's right. You may think the voters are idiots, but everyone has the right to be an idiot. Complaining just seems to encourage that response.
    – Ron Maupin
    Jan 30, 2017 at 4:06
  • 1
    You simply cannot force people to recognize your genius, nor can I force people to vote a certain way. It is their right to vote their conscience, and beliefs. That is the underlying SE model.
    – Ron Maupin
    Jan 30, 2017 at 17:37

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