Passwords - Episode 3, A New Look
Why Episode 3? Well, Like George Lucas as he created the first Star Wars movie, I have no idea where this is going to go. Also like George, I think this is going to be a big deal
Passwords continue to be the main tool used to secure our online life. User Names and Passwords, of course, but the passwords is truly the key to unlock our digital homes. We typically choose the same or similar user name for all our accounts. And, of course, we choose different passwords for each account. Right? Different?
You don't use the same key to open your home, car, office, hidden safe, and gym locker, right? Of course not, because you know that losing that key would compromising everything
PCMag surveyed over 1000 adults in 2021.
- 21% self-report they used the same password of everything
- Another 24% report using the same password for most things
PCMag.com, "Stop Using the Same Password on Multiple Sites! No. Really"
So Why Does it Matter?
The main concern for your internet privacy and the safety of your is how well each web site protects your keys
If all or most of your possessions were locked by a single key, you would probably be hesitant to toss that key to a sketchy valet at your favorite restaurant
Unfortunately, we do not have a good sense of how sketchy web sites are, or how serious they prioritize safeguarding your data. But we do realize that it only takes one data breach, one successful hack, one company that promised to 'get started on security soon' to lose your one key and compromise most or all of your online things
I hope that is true. However, you can check at one trusty resource.
Microsoft Regional Director and respected computer researcher Troy Hunt has created a searchable database of the data breach data. You can simply enter an email or phone number, and his site Have I Been Pwned will look through over 11 billion compromised accounts to determine if your keys have been stolen, duplicated, and shared online
Click on the link above and enter an email use online
Don't panic! My email has been stolen as well. Mine was one of 69 million accounts hacked form the ElasticSearch web site. And, I don't have an account with that service. I had never hear of this site until performing this search
It is likely some other service I use has contracted with ElasticSearch to make their web site nicer...and decided to give my information (along with 69 million other users) to ElasticSearch
Because I use different passwords for each account, this breach does not worry me that all or most of my accounts are at risk
And, good news, creating unique passwords is not that hard. I have a couple of ways to create and manager all the keys you will need for you digital life
This seems like a good place to end this part of our story. The characters have been introduced. The plot has been established. And the journey has been set
Next time, I'll prove that you can memorize all of the passwords you will ever need. After that, I show you how you can create and use passwords that you will never remember