Password Peril:  Is There a Good System?

Password Peril: Is There a Good System?

Does anyone else have trouble remembering all the sites and things you’ve signed up for?  Hmmm, can I even count all the types of sites that require passwords and username?

  • Bills – cable, internet, phone, mortgage, insurance, cell phone….
  • E-mail – I am afraid to say how many different email accounts I have! Um, including work?  6+?
  • Banks – I do all my banking on-line, and have savings accounts some places, checking accounts, kids’ accounts, credit cards….
  • Investments – My 401K from work, Ameritrade, E-trade, 529 plans
  • Websites – Ack!  Newsletters, webhosts, travel sites, domain registrations, upromise, ….

Needless to say there are countless places that I need to have a username and password.  I usually default to one primary username and password, but then sometimes that one doesn’t work and I need to add #’s or special characters.

I’ve heard other people say they have 3 sets of passwords and usernames that seem to work for any site requirements.  I have not gotten my act that together yet!  And of course, even if I were to get on board with this system, I still need to retrofit many sites due to my apparently completely random password selection process in the past!

My tracking system until about 2 weeks ago? Writing down the site, username, and password in my daytimer at work.  Yes, on paper with a pen.

But I’ve been doing a lot at home lately (since we finally got out of the dark ages and got internet).  I kept needing passwords when I was home too.  Plus I probably have 50 pages of scribbled notes – in no particular order of course.   Recently, I started an Excel spreadsheet to keep track.  I’ve had it for about 2 weeks and I already have 10 tabs!!  Insanity.

I’m sure there has to be a better way to do this. Just imagine the time and frustration it would save me to have this organized!  Does anyone have a good system they can share for keeping track of these things?  (Please don’t divulge your actual words.)

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