One of my friends had his AOL account hacked this week. Unfortunately, I have had many friends to whom this has happened. Some people say it is weak security at AOL, but most experts would say the problem is a weak and or old password.
Make a New Year’s Resolution to get a password manager and clean up and organize all your passwords. You will sleep better and avoid the hassle of being hacked. There are many password managers available. I recommend 1Password. I have been using it for more than seven years.
1Password creates, stores, remembers, and automatically logs you into your websites. All of my passwords and those of my wife, more than 600 in total, are stored in the 1Password cloud. They are encrypted so if someone broke into the 1Password cloud and stole the passwords, the thief would not be able to use them. Our passwords are long, ugly, and impossible to remember.
Here is an example of one of my passwords:
I don’t think anyone will be guessing it.
1Password will identify any passwords which are old and those which are duplicates. It is best to have no duplicate passwords. If one of the sites you use gets hacked and the bad guys get your password, you want to be sure it can’t be used at any of your other websites. It is easier to have a simple password like abc123 or something equally trivial. However, if you can remember it, it is not secure. I wrote a post about my experience with passwords five years ago you might find interesting (see Password Hell). Please put getting a password manager high on your list of New Year’s resolutions. If you want to compare some of the best password managers, take a look at PC Magazine‘s nice comparison chart called The Best Password Managers for 2020.