No matter what kind of site you register for it’s always best to keep in mind that unless two-step authentication is activated your only line of defense against having your account compromised is a memorable yet strong password. Still, many people had to learn the hard way that it is important to take good care of your passwords.
But when it comes to being compromised either by hacking, the service provider’s negligence or the user’s own incompetence, there is nothing else to do but learn from our mistakes and make sure that this problem never happens again. If your password isn’t strong, it might well end up on a list like this…
You may have your own opinion about the Trump administration, but if there is one thing we are all sure about the presidency of Donald Trump is that it’s very trigger… sorry, Twitter happy: need to be reminded of the infamous ‘covfefe’ incident? But it wasn’t the 45th President of the United States that ran into the biggest security blunder, instead it was former press secretary Sean Spicer (no, not Melissa McCarthy). In January 2017 he accidentally used a messaging app that, instead of sending out a password as a regular text message, included it in a Twitter post.
Welcome to the States, Passports and Passwords, Please!
If you thought that the travel ban on citizens from seven countries with Muslim majority was outrageous, the following proposed changes are part of President Trump’s “extreme vetting” measures and will definitely make your blood boil. According to those plans, border officials will be entitled to force visitors from a foreign country (including Muslim countries and even our closest allies) to hand over unlocked phones and/or provide social media passwords so a thorough scan of contacts and other personal information could be performed. So basically complete strangers could take a look at your most precious and secret information without your consent – under the disguise of so-called counter-terrorism.
We know it wasn’t the web developer’s intention, but still, this hit needs no further comment…
Using people’s gullibility to steal passwords is always a nasty trick, but it’s even nastier if your computer is infected. On August 10 2017 LMNTRIX warned internet users of a dangerous Trojan disguising itself as ‘Facebook Password Stealer’: instead of being able to hack into other people’s accounts (for whatever reason), the victims unwillingly give up their own login credentials and, as an additional ‘extra’, downloaded a malware program in the process. No wonder these researchers gave this malicious program the nickname ‘Instant Karma’…
I Ain’t Use Password Hints!
Unless you use handy password managers or you have a foolproof way of storing your passwords in a safe and easy-to-reach place, chances are that eventually you will forget what your password was. This is where most websites help you out by displaying a hint or a question you can answer with ease. But not even these sites can save you from such cockiness.
I Was Wrong, Sorry Everyone…
No matter where we go, it’s always the same shtick: your password must be a certain amount of characters long and contain a capital letter, two numbers, a symbol, an inspiring message, a magical spell… you get the deal. It is pretty annoying, since you are forced to do this over and over again with all your accounts. Well, guess what: according to Bill Burr, former manager at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the man behind that jumbled mess we call a password told The Wall Street Journal that this method is actually a load of nonsense.
Granted his intentions were good, but the idea of using a random combination of characters came from the time before the internet. So it’s not surprising that users are recommended to use long passwords that are easy to memorize rather than those random things password generators spit out.
How Strong Is Your Password?
Regular watchers of Jimmy Kimmel Live! are well aware that the late night show host likes to troll a lot – and his victims are not always celebrities. In reaction to the infamous Sony PlayStation hacking he conducted a simple test by asking random people on the street about their passwords. The funny (and sad) thing is that the interviewees initially refused to tell the reporter their passwords but after a series of seemingly innocent questions the passwords were easily uncovered.
Best Password Managers of 2019
|Editor's Choice 2019|