Mastery in the Art of Passwords

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Passwords are extremely vital and important while we use any sort of software. Today we do not have any sufficient substitutes for passwords. The available alternatives are fingerprint readers, retina scanners, voice identification, and USB tokens, but these choices to a large extent are not practicable or not user friendly. The conventional keystrokes remain as simple, inexpensive and acceptable.


Network managers and web services often give much simpler and easier methods of passwords management to avoid difficulties in this significant sector. We also pay great attention to avoid the reuse of passwords on various sites to prevent standard password-cracking techniques from guessing them quickly.

As far as the daily users of network services are concerned they may need to remember at least half-dozen hard-to-guess passwords along with user ID’s and e-mail addresses and it may cause difficulties in handling network services properly for regular users. The population of IT professionals in our country is growing and many of these professionals need to access several secure systems and which troubles one’s memory.

There are methods to remember hard-to-guess passwords such as to note down these passwords into a paper and can be recorded them as encrypted text files or we can adopt techniques for memorizing these complicated passphrases. Understanding these technical hitches we are introducing a brand new memorization approach before the users, struggling to memorize the tricks of passwords.

The pros and cons of password managers

By using an effective password manager majority of the users of network services can solve the issues pertaining to the security of passwords and while using this password manager we can store up our passphrases either in the cloud or on a local drive often on a USB thumb drive or other portable storage device. You should pay attention to keep this drive and another palpable risk involving in it is the hacking of vendor’s server.

Last May, there was a breach scandal LastPass password-management service reported a breach and the user’s apprehension was that the service providers may reveal these passwords and withstanding every rumours ‘LastPass’ CEO Joe Siegrist declared that people who used strong master passwords were not threatened. LastPass is accessible as a Firefox add-on and as an extension for Internet Explorer, Chrome, and other browsers. The monthly expense of version for mobile devices is $1. The major advantage of this password manager is that it stores your passwords on a web server. The recently published study reports of The Tech Support Alert site compared several free password-management programs, including LastPass, RoboForm, and KeePass and underline the growing popularity of these password managers.

The hard-copy approach to password management

The possible choices in front of you are to note down complicated passphrases or to memorize them when you fail to spot the techniques of password-manager. Even though we are preserving a shortcut to our passwords it is so vulnerable to others to intrude into our private accounts.

However despite its understandable drawbacks experts are advocating to jot down these passphrases into a paper and to safeguard such data. According to a researcher for security firm Damballa, Gunter Ollman, recording your passwords on paper is out of harm’s way and its one of the best methods to preserve your complicated passwords; more hazardous are reusing past passwords, setting your software to remember passwords, using the same password at multiple sites, using an easy-to-guess password and failing to change passwords habitually.

Similarly, Micro soft executive Jesper Johansson advocated the merits of record your passwords on paper method and famous computer expert Bruce Schneier emphasized its advantages for promoting the use of hard-to-guess passwords on his blog Schneier on Security.

The greatest peril involving in the paper method is that someone can easily find your paper and can access your network services using your passwords. You have to do the recover-password-by-e-mail two-step for each network and service you need to access if you lose the paper.

The wetware approach to password storage is still the safest

Many people expressed their opinion about Mr.Schneier’s 2005 post recommending that you write down your passwords conveyed their dissatisfaction with the suggestions of Schneier and elucidated their own techniques to remember their hard-to-guess passwords. From these comments we are sure, the users are not happy with the paper approach and we need to find effective methods for password-management.

Password crackers are eagerly waiting for additional information pertaining to password-management with an eye to employ these newer techniques into their cracking efforts. The most important thing is to change your passwords frequently and it needs your creative intervention such as using family members’ first names, place names from your past, song lyrics etc.

It is time to rethink about an effective alternative in password-management. When you buy a quality product from a well-known brand, the product should have a prominent model or serial number and while using a book we can find out an ISBN number on its back cover. Likewise, we can jot down fake and easily noticeable passphrases instead of the actual one as in the above mentioned instances; we can add or subtract two or three numbers or letters to our passwords. For instance, if “1158748562”is the password then it becomes “3370960784,” and “BCGA1339” becomes “DEIC3551.”

Another problem in memorizing the password is the mixing up of upper and lower cases during password creation. Though there is an option “Forgot your password?” and we can recover our passwords through e-mails, most of the users do not to go after these complex procedures. How Secure Is My Password suggests that passwords of 12 to 16 random alphabetic characters (found in no dictionary and following no discernible pattern) are more efficient than an eight-character password that meets Apple’s and other site’s requirements. Yet Apple’s and other network manager’s contributions in enforcing effectual password-creation policies, are sizeable.

The great hopes are the progressing endeavours for a competent password-manager and let’s hope a secure alternative to passwords will arrive before our memories give out. CNET contributor Lance Whitney stated last week, Microsoft’s immediate aim is to improve the password-management capabilities of Windows 8 and Internet Explorer 10.

Now, users have to wait to securely store their sign-in credentials in their systems’ software or on a service’s Web server. The best possible way for password management is user’s own password-mnemonic creations. Let’s hope for an effectual and efficient password-manager resolving the frets and hassles of users all over the globe…