With thanks to all who participated, here are your responses to my question … How seriously do you take your password security?
61% of respondents reported using the same password for more than one log-in or account at the office. Consider that, if someone hacks that single password, s/he also has access to any other accounts secured by the same password.
People don’t necessarily use the same password, though, for all their business accounts. Almost a quarter of respondents use three passwords at the office, and more than half of you use four or more. One reader reported using 18 different passwords at the office.
When I asked readers to rate how difficult it would be to crack your passwords, from a scale of 1 (embarrassingly easy) to 5 (challenging), 76% of you gave a rating of four or higher.
15% of respondents use one. When you look at the data below, and the total number of passwords readers use for both business and personal use, a secure app may be a good resource.
… consider switching from passwords to pass phrases, which can be more challenging to hack. 34% of respondents have already begun using pass phrases.
Do you use the same password for more than one log-in or account at the office?
How many different passwords do you use at the office?
Do you change passwords without prompting?
On a scale of 1 (embarrassingly obvious) to 5 (challenging), how difficult would it be to crack your passwords?
Between work and personal use, how many different passwords do you estimate you use in total?
Do you use a password management app?
I asked readers who use password management apps to identify them. Here’s what you said.
Do you use passwords or pass phrases as a rule?
If you’re a Twitter user, did you already know about the May 3/18 recommendation to change your password?
If you’re a Twitter user and knew about the May 3/18 recommendation to change passwords, did you do so?
A couple of weeks ago, Twitter issued a recommendation that its 336 million (yes) users change their passwords.
The recommendation was, of course, issued via tweet. “We recently found a bug that stored passwords unmasked in an internal log. We fixed the bug and have no indication of a breach or misuse by anyone. As a precaution, consider changing your password on all services where you’ve used this password.”
I wonder how many Twitter users caught this recommendation … and how many acted on it. That got me to thinking about passwords in general.
Think for a minute of how many times a day you enter a password, whether to unlock your smartphone, log on to your computer, access your voicemail, or simply enter a secured office area.
I’ve presented on cybersecurity twice in the last year, for EPAA and for Executive Secretary LIVE, and will speak again on the topic this October, when I’ll be presenting to executive assistants at the APC (Administrative Professionals Conference) in Kissimmee, Florida.
There are a number of practices you can put in place to protect digital security. Thoughtful development of passwords is among them. Regularly changing passwords is another. If you really want to make it difficult for others to lift your password, you can switch from using passwords to pass phrases.
This leads to the topic of my latest weekend poll …
Please take a couple of minutes to complete the poll below. As always, I look forward to hearing what you have to say and will publish results early next week.