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Keeping Track of Online Security Information

When I started making online purchases many years ago, I was faced with the problem of trying to remember my passwords and i.d.’s for multiple websites. Why is it that you always think that you can remember all of your passwords when you know it is impossible? Furthermore “simplying” things and having only one password for every site, bank account or credit card site, is very reckless.

A few years ago I came across an old spiral address book that someone had given me. I almost threw it out as I felt it had no real purpose in my techie life. After all, my cell phone kept the phone numbers, snail mail addresses and e-mail addresses of all my friends and family. But I took a second look at that address book and decided that it would be perfect to use to keep all of my online “security” information in. I was right.

I have been using this system for many years and have never had a problem. I list alphabetically every site that requires a password and/or user name. For example, for Amazon, I write down under the A’s – Amazon, E-mail address used (I have 3 e-mail addresses) and the password to access my account. If I forget my password, I simply refer to my “security” address book. I always leave plenty of space for crossing out and changing the passwords for the sites as needed. As a rule I change my passwords once a month. For some people this may seem excessive but I feel that instead of waiting for the possibility of someone hacking into my account, I prefer to take matters into my own hands and protect my security.

I keep my security address book in a safe place, a locked security box in my home. It is easily accessible to me, yet it is also secure.

Someone asked me why I don’t just type this information in a Word document and keep it in my computer. What if someone hacked into my computer or what if my computer crashed or what if, what if, what if? You get the idea. Handwritten documentation can’t be hacked into and in my opinion is quite secure for this purpose.

Each month I change passwords and log them into my security address book. I am very conscious of using passwords that have no personal information in the password itself. Lately I have been using the first letter from the titles of my favorite songs or the first letter from the first line of the lyrics of my favorite songs. For example, “Love, Soft As An Easy Chair” translates into LSAAEC and I usually add a memorable number to this mix.