Say goodbye to your email password 13



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When it comes to passwords, sometimes it feels like you simply can’t win: pick one password for all websites, and you’ll run the risk of losing everything, should somebody guess or steal it.

Choose a different password for every website, on the other hand, and it becomes extremely difficult to keep track. Is this really the right system for securing our most important data? Or is there a better way?

We’ll soon find out: Yahoo has just announced its plans to phase out passwords altogether.

Those who use Yahoo for email will be the first to benefit. All you’ll need is a smartphone (iPhone or Android) with the Yahoo Mail app installed.

If you sign in on your computer, a message will pop up on your phone asking permission to log in. Simply tap “yes” or “no”, and you’re in.

If you lose your phone, you can instead verify your identity through another email account or phone number.

Many industry experts are praising the decision, suggesting this idea could mark the beginning of a world without passwords. However, it might be a while yet before they’re gone entirely.

“I think passwords are going to be around for a little while,” said Satnam Narang from Symantec, the security company behind Norton Antivirus.

“I don’t think they’re going away as soon as we’d like them to. They’re so ingrained in everything we do from banking to email to shopping, you name it,” he said.

While he called this new system “a step above the password”, he still believes there are more secure options.

“Two-step authentication” is still considered the gold standard for protection, and is offered by many services such as Gmail and Paypal. This requires two separate pieces of information to log in: often a traditional password followed by an SMS confirmation.

Password management programs like 1Password are LastPass are also very effective tools that can securely “remember” your passwords for you – although they can be a little high-maintenance until you get used to them.

As with all internet security, it’s a delicate balancing act between safety and convenience. Here’s hoping this new development catches on – we may eventually get to enjoy the best of both worlds.

How good are you at remembering passwords? Would you be happy to see the end of it?

Starts at 60 Writers

The Starts at 60 writers team seek out interesting topics and write them especially for you.

  1. Stupid idea IMO. It is bad enough having to have a mobile phone beside me when to receive a code when paying bills online, but to have it at hand just to check emails?

    2 REPLY
    • Agree Anne – I get set up at computer to pay on-line, then have to go find the mobile – in about 5 seconds !!!

    • Rhonda O’Keefe Mine is usually in my handbag in my bedroom. By the time I get it the site has “timed out” and I have to start again. It is almost easier to revert to writing cheques.

  2. Although I have a yahoo account, I can’t say I’m fond of this idea I guess I will have to wait and see.

  3. Back in my working life some of the jobs I did in the airforce passwords were changed daily. In my last job passwords were changed weekly and old ones could not be used for 13 weeks. These days I use a different method. B|

  4. I only use my mobile (for hearing impaired) for emergencies if I’m out on the gopher. Not sure if it can install an app.

  5. NOPE. time to delete my yahoo email, aside my IP logged, this is all the information I want associated to my email address.
    This believed security, is also weighing on the believe that everyone has the capacity to sms.

    “All you’ll need is a smartphone” is the fail in this whole concept.

  6. I have two cell phones, neither of which I have ever bothered to learn to use. Nor will I. I like my privacy when I’m out and about. I don’t want to talk to anybody. This is my special time. Leave a message after the bee, and I’ll put my money under the mattress..

  7. no way! i hate having my phone linked to everything. besides it’ll make ten times easier for someone to break into your accounts. all they’ll need is to pinch your phone.

  8. Have I ever remembered one would be a better question. I write them down and then forget where I wrote them, pick one I think I will remember and then it’s not suitable have to add a number or a capital, they are the Bain of my life.

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