How to Frustrate Password Crackers: 8 Tips

Written by Mike Delaney

Some time ago, I was one ofrepparttar most prolific contributors to one ofrepparttar 132039 most popular newsgroups on Usenet. The newsgroup's purpose was to provide fraudulently-obtained, but valid, passwords for websites.

The process there is fairly straightforward: someone postsrepparttar 132040 web site address of a site that they want (free and illegal) access to. Several group members with colorful nicknames then "run"repparttar 132041 site. If a valid username/password is found, it is emailed torepparttar 132042 requestor, who in turn publicly heaps praise onrepparttar 132043 grantor, thus inflating his or her ego. My colorful nickname was "PassBandit".

Here are some tips to ensure that your account is notrepparttar 132044 weak account thatrepparttar 132045 other "PassBandit"s ofrepparttar 132046 world compromise:

1. The password is more important thanrepparttar 132047 username. Do not assume that because you have an unusual username (including e-mail addresses), you can choose a simple password.

2. Make your reminder question tough and unique -- something such as "What was my first pet's name?".

3. Do not use your username asrepparttar 132048 password. Similarly, do not use a password that "fits" withrepparttar 132049 username. The may be cute, clever, and easy to remember, but username:password combinations such as intel:inside, moody:blues, hewlett:packard, or foghorn:leghorn will be compromised very quickly.


Written by Bob Osgoodby

No, we're not talking aboutrepparttar wildfires inrepparttar 132038 western part ofrepparttar 132039 U.S., or not even something that can harm your computer.

Some times you will get an E-mail with a virus warning likerepparttar 132040 one that recently circulated onrepparttar 132041 web aboutrepparttar 132042 "A Card for You" virus.

Without checking to see ifrepparttar 132043 virus is real, many people immediately forwardedrepparttar 132044 note to everyone they know, and urged them to dorepparttar 132045 same. Many of them did so, and false information spread like wildfire aroundrepparttar 132046 web. This particular virus was exposed as a HOAX. If anyone had bothered to takerepparttar 132047 time and do a search on "A Card for You", they would have foundrepparttar 132048 web page at Symantec which clearly reports it as a HOAX.

The only thing you are accomplishing is to frighten people and cause unnecessary concern. In point of fact, you could unwittingly cause problems forrepparttar 132049 people you send them to, likerepparttar 132050 SULFNBK.EXE Warning did. This hoax urged people to search forrepparttar 132051 "sulfnbk.exe" file on their computer, and if it was found to delete it. Sulfnbk.exe, is a valid Microsoft Windows 95/98/Me utility that is used to restore long file names, and if you use any of these Windows systems, you will find it. This caused a lot of people to delete it, and then they had to scramble to restore it.

I recently received an E-mail outlining a persons experiences with viruses, and he urged everyone not to accept any E-mails with an attachment. He has set his mail reading program to automatically delete any message with an attachment. This is an over reaction. One ofrepparttar 132052 advantages ofrepparttar 132053 web isrepparttar 132054 wealth of information available onrepparttar 132055 net.

Much ofrepparttar 132056 information available includes files that are too large to read as E-mail, and are automatically converted to a file. These are text files and cannot hurt you, and neither can an image file.

Cont'd on page 2 ==> © 2005
Terms of Use