Never use the same password twice

We are all guilty of reusing passwords. So why is it dangerous?

The idea of someone hacking into a big secure company like Telstra and stealing my personal information is scary. What’s scarier is how many people use the same password for their email account or facebook page as for their paypal account or online banking.

When a hacker steals information from a company like Telstra one of the things they are often doing is looking for your name, your email address and your password. They then try to log in to sites such as paypal, which are often linked to your bank account, using that same email address/password combination.

A hacker won’t do this by hand – he or she will set up a program to check all the email address and password combinations for them. When someone is using the same password for everything, they give the hacker access to their bank accounts, their email accounts… essentially their entire online private life. This can then be used to steal money or for the purposes of identity theft.

The easiest way to stop this happening is to use a different password for anything that matters. Use a different password for your online banking, your email account, your paypal account, your ebay account… anything which could give someone access to your money or your personal information.

We are all guilty of using the same password more than once. Even as I am writing this I can think of one or two passwords I need to go home and change. If you are worried then write them down, and hide the list somewhere safe, away from your computer. If you think someone has seen it, change them and hide the list somewhere new.

More information
Read the news article Telstra owned website hacked to find out if your information might be in danger.





    COMMENTS

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    pate
    24th May 2012
    4:17pm
    Our bank used to ask for a new pass word every twelve months but doesn't bother these days. Maybe if I still banked with them I would complain but as I left them due to their charges each month for keeping our account, I got sick of paying for very little.
    tezziem@gmail.com
    24th May 2012
    5:55pm
    how many passwords should one have in his lifetime - pin numbers - id numbers, login names, user names, etc. How could one remember all of them. there is email passwords, facebook, bank accounts PIN numbers, websites joined, members login name, users name, medibank, medicare. I have already retired, thank goodness, otherwise I still have to remember all the work etc numbers. And when you forget any of them then you can't get any money to spend.
    aquatrek
    24th May 2012
    5:59pm
    Hi - my 2 cents worth is that any financial account like the bank MUST BE DIFFERENT from your everyday 'social' like Facebook unless there is something to 'hide' on your social website.
    Sandi (SA)
    25th May 2012
    8:00am
    I use one password for sites that it doesn't matter if anyone gains the password but for all sites that it would matter like banks,paypal etc. I use an entirely different one for each of those.
    Joybells
    25th May 2012
    4:38pm
    I have a complicated one for my bank accounts as it is the most important of any online sites I use. For other sites eg facebook, this one and social sites I keep them all the same. Too many passwords cause me confusion. I notice with Centrelink that they back up the password access with set question and answers that you have to get right.You set them up yourself when you register so I think this is a great way for extra security.If anyone wants to hack into my electricity account and maybe pay it for me good luck


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