If you use different passwords on all your online accounts, my hat goes off to you — because you’re part of a small contingent of people who actually heeds the warnings of social media and banking sites that repeatedly tell us not to reuse our passwords for the sake of our own online security.
A recent study shows that over 90 percent of us know that reusing passwords is an unwise choice, which begs the question of why we continue to do so.
As it turns out, there’s a psychological reason for why so many of us reuse our passwords — and it’s a little surprising.
LastPass surveyed 2,000 adults to get to the bottom of why 61 percent of us reuse our passwords despite the fact that we know better. It boils down to our personalities and, although we all have different reasons for not changing our passwords, both Type A and Type B individuals are guilty of this behavior.
It boils down to cognitive dissonance. People with Type A personalities don’t believe they’re at risk because they have confidence in their organization systems. Meanwhile, Type B individuals think that hackers won’t target them because their accounts simply aren’t worthy of a hacker’s efforts.
Furthermore, the vast majority of respondents use the names of friends, family members, and pets as passwords — so they’re not exactly tough for hackers to guess. Again, we ignore the advice of experts who say that the strongest passwords are a minimum of 12 characters and include a combination of numbers, letters, and symbols. They also advise that we use different passwords for every single social media and financial account — personally, I’m exhausted just thinking about it.
ENTER PASSWORD.— Joey Ellis (@joeyellis) August 17, 2015
NEW PASSWORD CAN'T BE OLD PASSWORD.
sets fire to computer
So, how can we mend our ways? New apps have come to the rescue. LastPass and 1Password, Glamour mentions, are two apps that will do all the work for us by storing our passwords and making them easily accessible from both our computers and our smartphones. Downloading one of these apps is way more efficient than changing all our passwords and then forgetting them at the most inconvenient times possible, am I right?
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