Let’s talk Password Security

I’m here to campaign for …….

Not national security — but PASSWORD SECURITY.

I’ve known you guys for too long and many of you have VERY insecure passwords. A website for a service that I use every day was hacked on Sunday. They got everyone’s user name, e-mail and password. Fortunately, I am not a paid member of this service so they didn’t have any financial information. Yesterday, NBC’s websites were hacked and reportedly Pay Pal was hacked. However, Pay Pal is not confirming this yet. There are millions of Pay Pal accounts and allegedly the breach only hit 28,000. Who are these hackers? They have no political agenda actually. They are anarchists and very skilled at breaking into servers and databases online — from afar — to get their hands on sensitive data.

Has it been more than 6 months since you changed your passwords for key websites, your e-mail, your online banking? You have a serious problem.

Your password should not be password and should not contain dictionary words. You should mix in symbols * $ # % — if allowed. Use a random password generator.

I have been taking my own passwords seriously for a long time and VERY seriously for about 2 years. In fact for most websites, I DON’T EVEN KNOW MY PASSWORDS.

Rather than keeping a list on paper which can be lost or found by the wrong person — I recommend using a password manager.

There are only two that I think are worth looking at.
Last Pass — LastPass.com
1Password — 1Password.com

Both will work on Mac and Windows. They are priced reasonably; Last Pass also has a free option.

I hope you vote for one of those 2 password managers today. The only way you can lose is with insecure passwords and if you don’t change yours about every 6 months.