The recent unplanned vacation (evacuation) left us in a hotel without, of all things, our Internet passwords.
We had checked and double-checked our evacuation plan list before we left the house and even added a few things to take, but the “password book” never hit our radar.
It was not until we got to our hotel and attempted to connect to Internet sites that we realized we had forgotten it.
Here is what led us to creating the “password book”: Initially, we only had a couple of Internet passwords. There were the AOL and MSN passwords. Then came the passwords for our computers and iPads.
Before we knew it, every company, like our bank, the electric company, the telephone company and any stores that we used required a login name and a unique password.
Then security and hacking became an issue so we were asked to add numbers or symbols to our words and we even started to get rated on the strength of the password: weak, strong, stronger.
Then we were asked to change our passwords on a regular basis. I know a lot of people who would use a word like Angel and then add a number. No, we were told. You have used that word before and besides, it does not have enough letters!
Or worse yet, the notice on the site reads “I’m sorry you have not logged into this site in six months and therefore you have to change your password”.
These requirements led us to purchase a business card folder. It is one of those three-ring binders that has plastic inserts for business cards. We filled it with cards and wrote the associated passwords. The constant changing of passwords every 30 days or 60 days, depending on the site, meant that the old passwords would get scratched out with a new one replacing it.
Since I have gone through all the family names, the dogs, the cats and street names, I had to succumb to words like “Kitchencounter84$” which received a STRONG rating, but was difficult to remember. It is for these reasons that the password book exists.
So now I have added another item to my checklist: the password book. And you do not have to worry about someone trying to steal our book. It is not going anywhere soon. We are still looking for the combination to the family safe.