Happy National Identity Fraud Prevention Week

OK, I realize it’s not as much fun as Talk Like a Pirate Day, but this is National Identity Fraud Prevention Week, at least in the UK. And there are some pretty scary stats (from a survey by McAfee) in this article, including:

  • 43% of respondents never change their password
  • 24% use the same password to access all online accounts
  • 59% ‘always’ or ‘mostly’ use the same password for everything
  • 30% of respondents surveyed use passwords of only one-to-six characters in length
  • 22% use only alpha characters

While I don’t believe everything I read on the internet, and I do understand that surveying a few thousand McAfee users isn’t the most representative group, the numbers are still pretty alarming.

Strong passwords, changed frequently, aren’t that hard to use. They’re hard to remember, but tools like eWallet mean that you don’t have to. eWallet – and other password managers – will safely store, and even generate, all your passwords.

Whether you use eWallet or not (and of course I hope you do), you should use good security – both online and off. Identity theft and other fraud is becoming more and more common, and it’s a real problem. Using good passwords, and shredding your paper info are two of the easiest and most effective way to protect yourself.

If you’re using passwords that are easy to crack, or haven’t changed them in a while, or use the same one too many places, change them now. Don’t put it off.

And to encourage and help everyone to use strong passwords, we’re giving half off eWallet (Professional Edition) until Monday, October 15. Use the following links to purchase eWallet at this special price for your: Pocket PC, Windows Mobile Smartphone, or Palm OS handheld. Remember, these come with the Windows PC version as well, so start protecting yourself now!

9 thoughts on “Happy National Identity Fraud Prevention Week

  1. Mark Jones

    How Weird. This morning I was just thinking about how vulnerable all my online banking was and how I needed to buy eWallet. (I’m serious!) The days tasks (kept by listpro :-)) made me forget until I read the blog. And Lo and behold, eWallet is half price!

    And you are right about security. I’ve been lax and many others have too and have paid for it. I feel much, much better now!

    Thanks very much,
    Mark

  2. Brandon

    Now if only I had a solution for my iPhone to have a decent wallet app … (hint hint).

    Pretty soon you lovely folk on that side of the pond will have the iPhone too … and complex passwords will be a thing of the past since there’s no way to keep track of them one you pickup the iPhone.

    I’d love to go back to using WM – but I just can’t do it. It’s like going from Windows XP to Windows ME. You just wanna throw it out the window after about 5 minutes :)

    Thanks for cutting 1/2 off the price though!! If I didn’t already own it I’d be buying it right now!

  3. NewsBreaker

    Those habits sound too familiar to me as well. It taes some time and discipline to keep things secure, and the threat just doesn’t seem looming at times, although I know it’s real and ID theft could cause some real headaches and wallet breaks.

  4. shinyplastic

    Perhaps eWallet should (optionally) track and remind users to change passwords? I also like some sites / programs graphical representation of password security red (weak) to yellow (OK) to green (strong). I realise its not for all, but it might remind some their passwords are very weak.

    There is also the flip side of fully encrypted passwords (I honestly only know one password and a few PIN numbers, eWallet has EVERYTHING randomly generated – I just copy and paste) … but if that file every got corrupted or lost … I can’t imagine the consequences :(

    Incrementally copy all encrypted files _regularly_ … Don’t just syncronise them to an external HD, if you corrupt the original and then sync (well you can guess the result). It’s often impossible to recover an encrypted file/disk, as one corruption can render the file unreadable (I am sure eWallet takes every precaution opening/closing to minimise the risk!). So as well an encrypting your life .. BACK IT UP!!

  5. Geoffrey Campey

    I’m the worst for this: I have a 6-digit all-lowercase password that is a person’s real-name that I have been using since 1997. Admittedly I use it for accounts that I don’t use for anything that will cause problems if someone hacks it, but still. As for more important details such as net banking, I’m lucky that at work my company has a policy that the passwords have to be changed every 8 weeks. Whenever I have to change my passwords for work, I use that wonderful little Passbuilder thats bundled with eWallet and create new passwords for my net banking and other sensitive passwords. Then I just cut and paste into ewallet and I’m ready to go.

    This is particularly important for me because I do a lot of travelling and end up having to use sensitive passwords on unsecured net connections (and even net cafes!) so its great for me to have a nice system in place to combat my inherent laziness.

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  7. Fantacy

    This kind of situation you mentioned is really getting worse,especially here in China. Most of the people who always surfs the Internet has the experience of losing their Internet account or password. As the Internet has expended in recent years, cybercrime has also. Your products are always good, easy to use, and have a nice interface! I’m using NewsBreak now! Always support you! Also thank you for making such effort to protecting people’ PASSWPRDS!;)

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