June 14, 2005
Dear CNET members,
Overall, I'm a pretty simple person living a fairly simple life, but when it comes to passwords, my world is complex. Here's why: A few years ago, a friend had his bank account password hacked; I've never seen a person lose weight so fast from stress. If you think this could never happen to you, pay attention, because that was the attitude I had until it hit close to home. Today, I'm a changed person. I am absolutely meticulous about changing my passwords monthly--especially for anything to do with my financial info--and making them difficult to hack. As for storing passwords, I use traditional pen and paper, and I never store them electronically--ever. Call it paranoia, but I'd rather be safe than sorry. But let me stop here so that you can read the great tips provided in Senior Editor Robert Vamosi's column, Security Watch: Writing down passwords. And if you've ever had your password hacked or have unique tips or a great way to create and store passwords, share them with your community of members in the TalkBack section. Hopefully, armed with your experiences and tips, we'll all have a smarter and safer way to keep those passwords secure.
This week's hot topic:
Picking your passwords
Is it better to have one complex password you use everywhere or a bunch of basic passwords that are site specific? After reading the latest Security Watch column, you had lots of helpful tips to share.
Seek professional help
Several of you recommended using RoboForm to securely handle all your password management. As CNET member FNicodem pointed out, the software remembers passwords and personal data such as credit card numbers, as well as guarding against phishing attacks.
Read FNicodem's full post in CNET TalkBack
Make friendly reminders
CNET member Visualdude opts to use a unique password for each site he accesses. But rather than trying to remember them all, he writes down each site and a reminder of what each password is, rather than the password itself.
Read Visualdude's full post in CNET TalkBack
Just say no
CNET member Llantha simply doesn't care if anyone figures out his passwords because he chooses not to do anything important online. He never saves his credit card numbers on retail Web sites and does all of his banking and bill paying offline.
Read Llantha's full post in CNET TalkBack
How do you store, remember, and create unique passwords--or do you use the same ones over and over? Read "Writing down passwords," then speak up in the TalkBack section.
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