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Windows 7: Advice for Updating All Passwords?

06 Jan 2015   #1
aozgolo

Windows 7 Professional 64Bit
 
 
Advice for Updating All Passwords?

Hi, I've been using computers and the internet for about 16 years now, and in that time I've signed up for hundreds of websites on the internet committing probably the worst password crime you can do...

I only use about 5 passwords, and simply vary them from site to site, even if it's a site I haven't been to in forever I can pretty easily guess my password from the small selection I use.

I want to correct this and go through all these websites and update all my passwords and create more sophisticated and personalized passwords for each. The problem is I have absolute terrible memory and won't just remember all these hundreds of passwords I use.

I am VERY leery of using any sort of password utility on my PC since it seems that any sort of security compromise on my system could spell the end for the entirety of my online accounts, I'm unsure what added level of security these types of software provide to keep your password library secure.

Also I'm curious to hear any advice people use for creating secure passwords and keeping track of them. I don't really mind using the same password or variation of it for accounts that aren't really what I view as major security issues (things like forums or image sharing sites which I mostly only use for screenshots and hold no personally identifiable info beyond my e-mail) but for secure sites like my e-mail, social networking, bank accounts, work accounts, etc. I'd like to create that added layer of security that personalized passwords provide without having the painful situation of being locked out later down the road because I've lost said password.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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06 Jan 2015   #2
Callender

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 
Passwords

The important passwords are kept in my brain and nowhere else. If I forget then there's usually a password reset button that sends a reset link to my email address.

Some people will use password managers and the like. I used to keep Dashlane installed but these days use PowerCryptor Free although it's a bit complicated to use at first.

Basics:

Generate a secure password list:

Advice for Updating All Passwords?-password-generator.jpg

Assign passwords to sites and save text file:

Advice for Updating All Passwords?-passwords-text-file.jpg

Encrypt the password file:

Advice for Updating All Passwords?-text-encrypt.jpg

If opened it looks like this:

Advice for Updating All Passwords?-passwords-text-file-encrypted.jpg

Right click to decrypt and open using password:

Advice for Updating All Passwords?-decrypt.jpg

It's an alternative to password managers anyway.


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07 Jan 2015   #3
bigmck

Windows 7 Home Premium 32-Bit - Build 7600 SP1
 
 

I keep mine on a file in MS Word. The file name is an unusual one so it can not be easily detected. This isn't fancy, but it stops me from forgetting them and is easily accessible. For websites like this one, security is not that important. I only have a few that are really important, like my bank.
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07 Jan 2015   #4
ignatzatsonic

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit
 
 

Got a favorite song?

No doubt about it? Always will be? Not public knowledge?

What's the first 15 words to it?

Write those words down and use the first letter from each word. Sprinkle in an upper case letter, a number, or maybe an odd character, like a semi-colon or something. Maybe 16 or 17 characters total.

You should be able to train your fingers to spit out those first letters to the words in the song easily.

Change it from time to time by keeping the same song, but using different upper case letters, numbers, or odd characters.

No need to use it for ordinary harmless sites like this; use it where a password breach would be a big problem for you---banks, bill paying, etc.

The CPU power required to crack passwords is getting cheaper every month. The last I read, it took thousands of dollars worth of CPU time to crack a well-constructed 15 character password. Adding another character in length significantly adds to the security.
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08 Jan 2015   #5
bigmck

Windows 7 Home Premium 32-Bit - Build 7600 SP1
 
 

That idea of a favorite song is a good one.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jan 2015   #6
Layback Bear

Windows 7 Pro. 64/SP-1
 
 

How about writing down the passwords and keeping them in your desk.
I keep mine on a Rolodex. It sits on my desk for easy access.

I usually use little sayings I can remember in most cases.

Example:
My dog took a dump.
Grandma nickers
Cold beer please
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 Advice for Updating All Passwords?




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