Password Security – Stop Masking P*ssw*rds

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I completely agree with this article by Mr. Neilsen:

http://www.useit.com/alertbox/passwords.html

It is one of my pet peaves when entering passwords. I type fast, but sometimes inaccurately. So often I have to retype my passwords, as I cannot see what I typed in to quickly check.

On my iPhone it takes forever to type if there is an error. If you have ever entered a security key for WiFi, you share my pain (I always type into notepad and cut/paste if I am doing a long password such as that).

I have never understood why passwords had to be starred out. It’s not like anyone is actually looking over your shoulder. If someone wants to hack your account, there are a thousand better ways including packet sniffing, keyword tracking, brute force attacks, and a variety of other methods.

So why do we still star out passwords like your email or site is Area 51?”  Habit? A false sense of security?

If we changed, would people gripe too much or think it’s less secure?”  Probably, but it would be for the better. Unfortunately, I think this is a losing battle as most people would think the site is less secure. But it would be nice if all web sites stopped starring out password boxes.

Also on this topic, is confirming passwords. Vidget Labs did a cool article on that subject here:”  http://www.viget.com/advance/password-fields-are-annoying/

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