Password Frenzy

Paul Morrone |

Password Frenzy

So how many passwords do you have? There are passwords for everything these days. It used to be if you had an ATM card that was a really important item to protect. Prior to ATM cards you just went into the bank and made a deposit or withdrawal or whatever banking you needed to do was done by the teller. Even now when you go into the bank, you need to swipe your card and enter a PIN. It is a bit crazy what we need to go through to prove we are who we say we are.

With identity theft being so prevalent there are necessary steps that we all should take to protect ourselves from being hacked.  Security questions are one of those steps. One of the most common security questions asked is “mother’s maiden name”? I always thought that was pretty creative but that does not even come close to the layers of security that need to be answered before you “get in” to whatever you are trying to get into. There may be other questions other than the one I already mentioned such as:

Name of first pet, High School mascot, college mascot, town where you met your spouse, street name where your first house was, town you were born in, favorite movie (my favorite movie changes every time I see my new favorite movie so I can never use this one). The list continues with other questions such as first name of your first girlfriend/boyfriend, name of oldest male cousin (too much thought required for that one), model of your first car, father’s middle name and so on. I want to add a few of my own such as, what do you yell when you hit your thumb with a hammer, do you know how to use a matchbook with an 8 track tape player, do you put the toilet paper over or under, do you put on a shoe and a sock or socks then shoes? Well you get the idea. It can be crazy.

Online access to various accounts may have the periodic security questions but also have the painful username and password combination. They can’t be the same and have to be a mix of upper and lower case letters, symbols and numbers and have to be at least a certain length but not too long either. Of course certain websites require the password to be changed every so many days. I have so many darn passwords, usernames and security answers that I have to keep an Excel spreadsheet that itself is password protected. Of course when attempting to login to something, I get cocky and think I remember what the combination is and get that dreaded red screen “incorrect, please try again”. So of course I try again with what I think the combination is and get the same error message. Then the “forgot password link” is the next step.

There must be an easier way but in this day of technology where everything is at your fingertips, passwords are here to say. Not before too long, all technology will have some kind of voice, facial recognition and who knows what else.  Good luck everyone keeping your passwords safe.

Until the Next Tom’s Take…………