Thursday, June 26, 2014

Security Questions? Beethoven

When Sarah Palin's email account was hacked a few years ago, the hacker used social engineering, not technical prowess. By pretending to be Palin and requesting a password reset, the hacker answered the security questions by using publicly available knowledge about Palin. You know those security questions on many sites: various questions like home town, school mascot, dog's name, first car, and so on. You may not be as famous (or infamous) as Sarah Palin, but your accounts can be hacked via security questions as well. Take a look at your friends on Facebook and notice how much information used for security questions are in their profiles.

The answer? Don't play their game, play yours. There is NEVER a good reason to put your CORRECT personal information on Facebook or anywhere else on the Internet.

Next time you see a set of security questions, use the same answer over and over and over. For instance, as a musician, I may use Beethoven for every answer. And I mean EVERY answer.

Favorite movie dog: Beethoven
Favorite musician: Beethoven
Historical figure you'd most like to meet: Beethoven.
Security Questons? Beethoven
Image courtesy of zachflanders on flikr

See, those make sense.Sometimes your chosen word will. Other times? Nonsense.

First car: Beethoven
High school mascot: Beethoven

Pick a word, name, place, or made-up word (not your password) that you can always remember. Use it for every entry on all your websites that demand security questions. After the change, no one will ever guess your security hints.

PS: The Tyler Writer's Workshop & Conference starts in two days. Here's where you SIGN UP.

No comments:

Post a Comment