Sunday, January 21, 2007

Yahoo! I Created One

Those of you who use in any of your mailings know there have been some articles on password security. Today I created a new password that(forgive me)passes muster. Suggested was using nine letters, numbers and symbols in some combination. Fifteen was the preferable number, as that would give hackers a bit more challenge in breaking. If my new password will take over 10 years to break, I'm home free.

One interesting read was "Password Recovery Speeds", put out by This article informs the reader how long it takes hackers to break combinations of upper case letters, lower case letters, combinations of upper and lower, using letters and numbers. I think, though, you should read Bruce Schneier's web published articles. Begin with and check the list at left. I read "Secure Passwords Keep You Safe" followed by the lockdown site mentioned earlier, which is a hyperlink in the article.

I have opted to change my password, which presently are eight differently spelled ones. However, I began looking for a root word to which I could add suffixes and prefixes. When my eyes spied the sentence saying how the hacking machines could rush through the English dictionary and numbering system to eliminate the odds of one's password being broken, I made a decision.

On my bookshelf are numerous foreign language dictionaries. So I plucked one, skimmed through the alphabet glancing quickly at words, and discovered one slightly pronounceable(without ever having heard the word before), saw its apt definition and began to play with the letters.

I tried separating the word and capitalizing a few letters; next, I added a few numbers I thought I could remember, and typed a few symbols. So if the word had been cloisonne I typed thus:

c l o i s o n n e. Then I capitalized a few: cLoiSonNE. Next, I added numbers: cLo3iSon5N9E. But not being finished I added a few symbols: cL[o3iS?o5N9#E. And that became my password. Without realizing it, I had 14 digits.

Next, I typed the final result a dozen times to be sure that I was using my right and left fingers to create the final word.

This, in essence, is how I arrived at my password. The author of the article stated that one would have to have the password in a handy place, and to be sure that a friend/relative/family member could break into your computer, you should put the password in a safety deposit box instead of pasting it on your computer. I will have mine pasted in several hiding spots around the house until I can recite this in my sleep!

Well, I taped my new password above the space on the screen so I could see it as I typed it. I've changed one email address to include this new combination. I doubt any hacker is looking at what he/she can get from my computer, but then again, I do use my credit card numbers when online shopping.

Do you use the same password for all your sign-ins? I've always had a different one. Staying informed as to what to enter when I opened Amazon, my bank, frequent online shops, etc, I kept them all on a list and guarded with my life. Now, if all of them become cL[o3iS?o5N9#E, I should be able to memorize the combo and have no need for a list.

Just in case I've misrepresented Bruce Schneier's suggestions, read the above articles for yourself. Good luck with your new, undecipherable, unbreakable password!

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