In the current day, privacy and data integrity have become one of the most talked about areas of computing. It seems like almost everyday somebody has been cracked or a new security hole has been found in an application you once trusted.
The encrypting of data sessions has become almost common place amongst computer users. Every reputable e-commerce site uses SSL to protect a users data while transmitting personal information such as credit cards and home addresses.
The most common type of crack found on a machine isn't a crack at all. In fact, it is usually just an unsuspecting user, utilizing a protocol such as POP or FTP to transfer information over the Internet. By using these protocols the user has unknowingly transmitted their login and password in clear text over the Internet. The passage of clear text data such as login names and passwords through the Internet means that anybody using a sniffer program could potentially gain access to your most personal information.
In the world of databases this is no different. If you connect to PostgreSQL without the use of an encryption technology there is potential for misuse among crackers on the net. If a cracker was using a sniffer on your network, they could gain access to the information that is stored within PostgreSQL.