OK, boys and girls. It’s time to change your passwords because hackers have compromised 2 MILLION accounts.
I know, I know…. it’s too hard to keep up with all your passwords, so you chose to use the same one for all of your websites. I know… I’ve done that, too.
According to news reports, accounts on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Yahoo, and Gmail (perhaps others?) have been compromised and the hackers may use the passwords to access your accounts.
You may ask, “So what if my Facebook password is compromised? I don’t have any important info there anyway.” If you’re using the same password across multiple accounts, a hacker could use your Facebook or Gmail username and password to access your bank account or other sensitive accounts.
What that means is that if you have an account with any of these services, you need to run (not walk) to your accounts’ settings and change your passwords — change the passwords on *ALL* of these accounts. And don’t change them all to the same password (the most popular are “password1”, “1234567”, etc.). Even if you don’t have an account with any of these services, it’s important that you regularly change your passwords on your other accounts, as well.
So how do you come up with (and manage) different passwords?
I’m glad you asked!
I have recently begun using a platform-independent (PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone, Android) and browser-independent (Chrome, Firefox, IE, Safari, etc.) password manager that encrypts the information, and keeps it securely in the “cloud”. It’s called LastPass and it may be the last password you will ever need to remember, as it is capable of generating impossible-to-remember passwords for each of your accounts. It’s called LastPass. There are free and paid versions, but I doubt you’ll need the $1 per month version.
After you install LastPass, remember to change your passwords periodically. Even an impossible-to-remember password can be compromised by a highly-determined hacker.
Again, log into your accounts and change your passwords. Do it now. You have been warned.