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Inheriting passwords

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Friday, January 13, 2017

Virtually all of us have email and social networking accounts. Many people have blogs or even their own websites. The growing activity of all sorts of intruders looking for unknown vulnerabilities and attacking websites is forcing users to be constantly concerned about the security of their information. If a site is maintained by its owner, they have to solve the problem themselves. If you use a site maintained by a third party, the owner is supposed to keep it secure.

Let's talk about passwords once again, but this time we'll look at them from a somewhat unexpected angle. As computer hardware becomes more and more powerful and new hacking routines are invented, users have to make their passwords longer and more complex. Previously, an eight-character password comprised only of letters was enough, but now passwords of this kind are cracked instantly. And here arises a problem.

None of us is going to live forever. If, in the past, people left property and real estate to their heirs, nowadays an inheritance more often includes digital assets such as family photographs, videos, diaries, emails, and even money. Imagine that you’ve managed to mine a certain amount in a cryptocurrency and protected your online wallet with a good, strong password. If something happens to you, who will get the money? It is quite possible that it will end up in hackers' hands. Or, perhaps, no one will be able to take advantage of it. Remember what happened to Nazi gold held in banks in neutral countries?

Many owners of online services are already looking for a solution to the problem. For example, Facebook introduced a special status for the accounts of deceased people because after their owners' deaths, many accounts were compromised and used to send out spam and add likes.

We do care what people will think of us when we’re gone, right?

#password #security

The Anti-virus Times recommends

Writing passwords down on a slip of paper is a bad idea, and we write about that quite often. But the situation described above indicates that passwords must be stored in:

  • A place that criminals can't access;
  • A place where they can’t get lost (e.g., in the event you relocate);
  • A place where your heirs will be guaranteed to find them;
  • And in a form that allows them to survive in the event of any force majeure.


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