NPR brings attention to passwords in a recent segment of Morning Edition (text and audio). They do a nice job pointing out how haphazardly – i.e. poorly – many people approach passwords and password security by, for example:
– using really bad passwords like ‘password’ or ‘123457’ (The tricky part (not!) is supposed to be the ‘7’ instead of a ‘6’ at the end!)
– not paying attention to their answers to the ‘security’ questions used to reset forgotten passwords.
– saving passwords in an email to themselves.
– writing down passwords and having “a photocopy at home and a photocopy in the office and a couple of copies here and there.”
Some of this recklessness can be attributed to the helplessness that many people feel when they hear about hacks of companies like the recent announcement of Anthem insurance.
The result is poor password hygiene.
Neal O’Farrell from Credit Sesame: “There is so much you can do to layer yourself in security, just to make it difficult enough for hackers not to bother with you.”
That’s critical! You play a vital role in your own security.