Print out my passwords? Has he gone mad? Well, perhaps, but the concept of a PasswordCard is interesting. You print out a credit-card sized paper that has rows and columns. Choose a symbol from the top row, and a row number (or colour). And choose any direction (up, left, right, etc.) When you log on to a new site, you take the card out of your wallet and literally read off your password, picking a sensible length of characters; eight or ten should do the trick. But: don’t read along with your finger, or the smudge will tell a thief where your password is.

It’s far safer to pick secure passwords and write them down, than it is to remember simple and easy to guess passwords. You already protect your wallet very well, and even if it does get stolen the thief will still not know which of the many thousands of possibilities on the card is your password.

I have far too many accounts and associated passwords, but for somebody who has fewer, this may be a rather good solution. (For the more techy, you can also use this Perl program to print out the passwords. Note: the links on that page are invisible (to me) so you’ll have to mouse-over every word.)

Security and password :: 24 Sep 2010 :: e-mail