Archive for May 7th, 2017

My password security fiasco: Part 3 of 3

May 7, 2017

By Matthew E. Milliken
MEMwrites.wordpress.com
May 7, 2017

The first installment of my password security fiasco is available here; the second part is available here. 

Nearly five years ago, I wrote about my propensity for opening oodles and oodles of tabs on my web browser. Those who know me will not be surprised to learn that my email accounts are similarly stuffed with tens of thousands of messages.

Every so often, I try to weed out outdated, obsolete and unnecessary emails. I was doing that the other night when I spotted a notification on my Gmail web page stating that I was using something like 2.5 gigabytes out of my 15GB allotment. I’d seen this information before, but on this particular evening, some combination of boredom and idle curiosity prompted me to click the link that said “Manage.”

That opened a new tab that had three components. One was a solicitation to buy more storage from Google (15GB is the company’s free basic offering). The second component was a pie chart showing me how much online Google storage I was using. The third thing was a reminder that my Google storage was shared by three of the company’s services: Gmail, the Google email service; Google Drive, the company’s cloud (read: online) file storage service; and Google Photos, their cloud photo storage service.

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My password security fiasco: Part 2 of 3

May 7, 2017

By Matthew E. Milliken
MEMwrites.wordpress.com
May 7, 2017

When I left off my pulse-pounding story about forgetting my master password, I was discussing the trouble I had in recovering — that is to say, guessing — my password.

One of the problems was that I couldn’t just keep entering password guesses until I found the right one. If I entered enough incorrect phrases, LastPass would lock me out for five minutes. I’d wait a few minutes, repeat the cycle, and get no closer to having my passwords. Unfortunately, there seemed to be no other options for regaining access to my account.

Because practically everything on the Internet, and at least half the things on my smartphone, involves a password-protected account, I felt paralyzed.

For weeks, I contemplated setting aside a day just so I could guess my password. But the prospect was dismal, so I never did it.

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