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Study: Changing Internet Passwords A Waste Of Time

Expert: If Your Identity Is Stolen, The Information Will Be Used Immediately; Make Personal Code Unique.
Reporting : Dave Carlin /NEW YORK (CBS) ―
Resetting your Internet passwords frequently is a security measure designed to keep you safe in cyberspace. However, a new study by a Microsoft researcher has found that constant changing is a giant waste of time and money and makes us no safer from identity thieves. The study concluded someone hacking into your computer and stealing your password is similar to a crook getting your house key. The crook will likely use it right away and not wait until after you've changed the locks. "As soon as they've got it, they're using it and then they're gone," said Lance Ulanoff, editor of PC Magazine. Ulanoff advises people to get stronger passwords in the first place. He said do not use your mother's maiden name or the names of your kids or pets. "Just mash a sentence together and you'll find that you'll really remember it," Ulanoff said. He used the example: "I fly through the air 23 times." Ulanoff also recommended password managers, downloaded for free, which create passwords for you. "You never have to remember a password again except for one and that's the master password," he said, adding new iris and finger scan technology will eventually replace traditional passwords. CBS 2 HD asked documentary film producer Ashley Nicole about her Internet passwords. She has 10 of them and changes them regularly. She confessed because of this she has a hard time remembering them. Even if it is useless to constantly reset them, Nicole planned to keep doing it anyway. "If it makes me feel more comfortable changing my password that's what I'm gonna do," she said. She added that now she will also take the extra time to make sure all her new passwords are tough nuts to crack. The Microsoft researcher came up with a calculation that one minute of each user's time each day equals about $16 billion a year.

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