“We’ve detected some virus activity on your account. Please change your password.”
These sorts of emails send me into a panic. What was the original password for that credit card, store, membership, account, automatic bill, newsletter, blog, or whatever else I may do online?
And what causes me more worry: What should I change it to? I’ve already run the gamut of options: my kids’ names, birthdays, pets’ names, street I grew up, a collection of house numbers, city I was born. I try to be original yet simple. My website designer insists I use something obscure with all the symbols, @#$%^&*K+=.. for example. It’s impossible to remember and means I have to find her email, copy and paste the hieroglyphics into what I need to open. Too many steps.
If you’re like me, never fear. There are online operating systems that can manage your passwords for you.
And all you need to remember is one secret mega-password that will then connect you with the rest. Whew, just what I need, another application to learn to use, another word to create and remember to unlock everything else.
I have my own password manager- a little notebook that I keep inside my desk. Very low-tech, inexpensive and for the most part, reliable, if I remember to update it and keep it where I can find it. (under the passport, pile of foreign money, old photographs, keys to various unknown places, and such. )
Yet I still have to change my passwords and struggle to find words I’ll remember. My mother uses foods. Maybe I’ll try that.
I’ve been working with a trainer, Rob, for a few months to see if I can strengthen my core and thus prevent my back from aching. In between abs and arm exercises, I complained that my children only remembered my birthday Monday after their father sent them an email. Quickly, I received three phone calls. Rob told me that when he went to college, his mother opened up a bank account for him, and made his ATM pin her birthday. Now that’s a good password!
For a fun story about password woes read this: http://www.newyorker.com/fiction/features/2013/06/10/130610fi_fiction_park