Saturday being the first day of Spring, I wanted to get out and start my spring rituals of getting the yard sorted out and pulling out the outdoor tools from the back corner of the garage.
Well, I didn’t get as far with that as I would have liked it was a useful start. At the end of the day, with a week of productivity hints in my head, I took to cleaning up some of my online life. Like replacing the batteries in the smoke detector, I think its past time to get into the habit of rotating online passwords.
I’m a total convert to 1Password from the good folks at Agile Solutions. That is a great password keeper for a number of purposes. (Note: If you need a look at some password keeper solutions see this Lifehacker article) I still was in the bad habit of using the same password in multiple places. And there were still some passwords that weren’t as strong as they need to be.
1Password has a good password generator, frequently I base my password on their suggestions but make the odd change to make it more likely that I might remember it. However, the real step was to stop pretending I could remember them all. At one point you need to trust in an encrypted archive of passwords. It does have a sense of ‘all the eggs in one basket’ behind a single master password. However the threat is more likely is a phishing attack or compromised web service. So diverse and complex passwords are the best defence for the most likely security compromise.
In reality, the folks with a little black book of passwords may have had a good idea. I wouldn’t recommend that but I wouldn’t recommend the 2 or 3 standard passwords that I used everywhere for a couple years. There are simply too many places and too many services of various quality to rely on their security for your password.
So please consider taking the equinox (spring and fall) or the solstices, or all of these, as a time to change up the keys to your online life. I like the spring, I’m hoping my brain and fingers will adapt a little faster but there is a to-do on my calendar for this fall to do it all again.