Saturday, April 10, 2010

Let's play ... PASSWORD!

Back when computer passwords first came out, the requirements were simple. The name of your favorite teacher. Your beloved childhood pet. Your sister's birthday. Nowadays, passwords have become more and more complicated — and harder and harder to remember. Six letters? Not enough. Eight letters? Add a number. Added the number? Include at least two capital letters. Decided what to capitalize? Now add a symbol. No, not THAT symbol, try another. What could be easier. Now try and remember it six months from now.

I used to have a couple of passwords I liked to rotate with various accounts. That, I can remember. But lately, businesses have been upgrading their systems and strengthening their online security. So now instead of two or three passwords, I have dozens. Can I remember then all? On a good day, I can barely remember then names of my two kids.

And the questions you need to answer now in case you forgot your password? "What's the name of the elementary school your father's next door neighbor attended?" Can I take "HELP" for $200, please, Alex.

So when I saw a four-star-rated application for the iPhone that works like a safe for all your passwords, I jumped. Spent hours meticulously entering the information. Now if only I could remember the special password I created to access it.

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