A Topic Revisited: Passwords
Passwords. It’s a topic we hit on not too long ago, but in the wake of all of the passwords that have been stolen due to a number of websites being hacked recently, it probably wouldn’t hurt to touch on it again.
LinkedIn, Last.fm, eHarmony and, most recently, Yahoo! Voices are among those that have been hacked in the last few months alone, yielding hundreds of thousands of passwords being compromised. We’re not talking about janky, run-from-some-guy’s-basement websites here; these are the real deal.
Now, admittedly, these websites may not be of the utmost importance to your life or hold sensitive information, but the issue is that, if you use the same password for everything, then by association, the websites that do hold important information have also become vulnerable. Save your credit cards on Amazon? Use Paypal or online banking? Have sensitive information saved in your email? If you use the same email and password for all of these websites, the problems that can arise are obvious.
Zak Willis, a Senior Customer Service Engineer with ENA’s CTAC, wrote a blog roughly two months ago on password security, which can be found here, and I highly suggest you read it to obtain tips on creating hard-to-crack passwords. He also stresses that you should never use the same password for everything, which is something I can’t reiterate enough since so many websites seem to be having issues with keeping your passwords under wraps.
There is one final thing I would like talk about, which only applies if you’re a smart phone user. Have you considered what information you have saved on websites and apps that would be accessible should your phone be lost (and found by someone) or stolen? I suggest password protecting your phone, too, and don’t make it the same number four times!
I personally had a wake up call back in January when my information was compromised on one website and I realized I had ignorantly used the same password on most websites. Thankfully nothing serious happened, but it was certainly a frightening situation. I hope none of you go through the same thing, but if the day comes when you do, don’t say you weren’t warned.
Image courtesy of stock.xchng.