By Caleb Kola Okello
Published May 31, 2015
Finally you have beaten the early morning traffic jam. Rushing down to your desk to finish up that article for submission at 10.00 AM, you sit at your desk and bam! You have forgotten the password to your computer. Quickly, you reach for your phone to call your wife for your password reminder. But your phone is off. You turn it on and key in the wrong Personal Identification Number (PIN). An error message is displayed on the screen of your phone. Two more wrong PINs and the Subscriber Identification Module (SIM) card is blocked. What next?
On a normal working day,an average worker keys in between 20 to 50 passwords to access the various accounts that they use. From home alarm systems to online banking and from the phone to the computer and social media, the reliance on passwords appears overwhelming. The continual technological advancement and shift to computer-based transactions means the 50 passwords may easily grow to more than 100.
Though password managers advise against the use of any one single password to access more than one account for security reasons, a survey done by Janrain Inc, a private technology company in the USA that provides software solutions to companies to manage their customer’s profiles revealed in 2014c that up to 30% of users think washing the washroom or solving world problems is easier than making a unique password. It is therefore not uncommon to see people use a single password to access all their accounts.
If you are the kind of person that takes advice from techies more seriously, how do you deal with the many passwords for your various accounts?
Use Browser Plug-in Password Manager
Companies have come up with various software to help users save and secure their passwords. The manager installs as a browser plug-in to handle password capture and replay. When you log in to a secure site, your details are saved. Next time you log in it automatically fills in your details. Depending on the number of accounts you save therein, the manager will give you the option to choose the account you want to access. But you still must remember the main password for that software.
Create strong but easy-to-remember password
Another way that people secure their accounts is by having a strong but easy to remember password for the accounts that they really care for and not so strong passwords for the not so important accounts. According to howtogeek.com, using a sentence of not sensible words or grammatically incorrect may make good passwords. Alternatively, using the acronym of a proper grammatical sentence is another way of a good way out. For example “passwords are an unnecessary necessary evil we live with today” could be used in creating a password like, “praunewlw2”. It’s not easy for anybody to think of such a statement and pick the initials.
Use social login
The use of social login can ease the need for numerous passwords. Social log in makes it easier for people to sign into sites through their preferred social networks or e-mails that the sites already have. It means that an individual can choose from Twitter, Facebook, Linked-in or whatever social network they want to access their accounts. The account must be linked to the site they are visiting, tough.
Use numbers that correspond with alphabetical letters
For passwords that need numbers you can make the numbers correspond with the alphabetical letters. For instance, if your password is 3679 you may use the letters CFGI to remind you of your pass code. Alternatively you can disguise it in a contact with added numbers, which you know you have to ignore.
Fortunately,corporations like Google and Yahoo are providing an option for re-setting forgotten passwords through cellphone numbers stored on their servers
Who likes passwords, anyway?