The Simple Authentication and Security Layer (SASL) is a framework for providing authentication and data security services in connection-oriented protocols via replaceable mechanisms. It provides a structured interface between protocols and mechanisms. The resulting framework allows new protocols to reuse existing mechanisms and allows old protocols to make use of new mechanisms. The framework also provides a protocol for securing subsequent protocol exchanges within a data security layer. This document describes how a SASL mechanism is structured, describes how protocols include support for SASL, and defines the protocol for carrying a data security layer over a connection. In addition, this document defines one SASL mechanism, the EXTERNAL mechanism.