So many passwords, so many devices — how do you go about trying to remember them?

 

As demonstrated by the countless number of post-it notes on desks, cryptic scribbles in wallets and password-reset emails, remembering our online credentials is becoming increasingly problematic. Given the prevalence of this issue, it’s only logical for us to wonder whether there is a more effective way of remembering the passwords we use to access sites we visit on a daily basis.

In today’s digital world, the amount and complexity of passwords is on the rise. With social media, gaming, shopping, entertainment and banking almost exclusively conducted online, it is fast becoming a major headache to remember all the usernames and passwords that keep us connected, especially for sites that we do not visit on a daily basis.

Connecting using keyboard-less smartphones and tablets that have to be synced with our PCs is only making matters worse, coupled with the fact that many accounts now require longer passwords with special characters for extra security. With all of this in mind, it really is no wonder that we can’t keep track.

The following statistics gathered from recent surveys (our Password Management and Authentication Research in June 2011 and Norton Omnibus US Survey in March of the following year) show how widespread the problem has become:

33% of users have more than ten passwords.
25% forget three or more passwords every month.
30% use a smartphone to access online accounts.
Nearly 40% of users write down their passwords.

What are the problems posed by traditional solutions?

The methods typically used by PC users to remember their countless usernames and passwords tend to be complex, ineffective and risky. Here are some of the most commonly used password-remembering solutions followed by the problems they pose:

Memorising them: The sheer number of different passwords make it nigh on impossible to store them all in your memory.
Writing them down: Notes with passwords can fall into the wrong hands, in turn exposing you to theft and fraud.
Filing them: Making a digital file of your passwords and leaving it on your devices can be dangerous if someone gains access to your computer, smartphone or tablet.

Simplifying them: Many people use the same password for all of their different accounts, often one that is easily guessed (e.g., 123456, a birthday or a home address). If a hacker manages
to crack your password once, they can immediately use it to access all of your other accounts.
Letting your browser do it: Most browsers can remember passwords. Nevertheless, if your
passwords aren’t managed correctly, your browser might automatically log you in and
expose your accounts to anyone who uses your device or make your saved passwords accessible to outsiders.

 

The solution: A new class of tools to minimise the hassle

Looking at the information above, it’s clear to see that traditional methods are reinforcing unsafe habits. As a consequence, a number of password management products have recently been developed. More than just browser-based tools that simply save and auto-fill information, some of today’s password managers offer features that make it easy to call up passwords and access them securely and conveniently wherever and whenever needed across all your devices.

Norton Identity Safe is the latest entrant. This brand new product features cloud-based security, one-click login, and is, most importantly, very easy to use. What’s more, thanks to Norton’s reputable status as a worldwide leader in security, you can rest assured that this product will keep your passwords out of the hands of those who might misuse them.

To learn more about Identity Safe and download it for free, visit:
https://identitysafe.norton.com/?inid=hho_SecurityCenter_us_2012_Apr_IdentitySafe_PasswordArticle.