There are two incompatible versions of the sftp package:
Both are used in a very similar way.
sftp allows the transfer of file, using interactive commands very similar to ftp. The entire sftp session is encoded, as are the login/password tokens.
The basic commands are the same as those of the ftp command: cd, get/mget, put/mput, help, quit are all used the same way as their ftp counterpart.
sftp ignores .netrc.