The password reset story has caught attention for more than obvious reasons and fingerpointing has become rampant, diverting the attention on Palin somewhat inappropriately. Speculation as to how her Yahoo account was compromised varies, but the VP Candidate may just be the perfect example of how common password habits can expose a common security risk. And poor password habits are not only restricted to potential Vice Presidents.
Alaska’s Governor Is Not the Only Target
Sarah Palin may have spared herself the negative public eye if she had followed the basic rules of password security: long is strong. This cannot be stressed enough but in light of the Palin email hack, strong responses to (password recovery) security questions is just as important. It’s just too easy to guess a zip code/pet’s name/mother’s maiden name – it’s rarely just guessing, all that information is usually found online.
Passpack’s notes field gives you the option of answering a rarely used, yet important security question with an obscure response:
Question: What’s your mother’s maiden name?