Technology: The Surprisingly Porous Nature of Password Security Online

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Security-password-entryLast week saw some serious security breaches in the online world, as first LinkedIn, then eHarmony and finally Last.fm having user passwords spilled across the web like so much oil after a drunken tanker captain missed a warning.

What does this mean for your safety online? You're screwed basically. Let's say you went and changed your LinkedIn password the second the breach happened. The problem that cased the breach, however, hasn't been fixed. So your "new" password is, essentially, hacked too. Congratulations.

Can you even be safe online? There are levels of safety. Many people use the exact same login for every website. Argh. That's no good. Even if you use the same email address or user name, different passwords are key. Moreover, making safe passwords is hard, and there are some online sources claiming that it doesn't matter anyway.

The bottom line is that there are lots of challenges in our new digital life, so being ready for them is something you can't hope for, but have to keep an eye on. Something else to do, yeah, sorry. Welcome to the future.

[Source: LinkedIn, the Los Angeles Times, The Verge, Paul's Home Computing Blog]

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