Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Who Knows Your Passwords?

By:  Susan M. Graham, Certified Elder Law Attorney, Senior Edge Legal, Boise, Idaho

Do you have too many passwords?  Who, other than you, knows what they are or where you keep them?

Passwords are now in the news every few weeks.  We learn they are stolen and used to access our private accounts.  Even the sophisticated, technology savvy companies such as eBay and Google cannot keep the passwords of their customers safe. 

Why does this matter to you?  What if you are sick, die or just forget a password - how can you or someone you trust get into your account? 

The solution – Take a piece of paper, and for each account, write down the: 

  • Name of the account
  • User name
  • Password

Store the list in a safe place.  In addition, give a copy to someone you trust, or place a copy of the written list with your estate planning documents.  Lastly, create a reminder to update the list at least once each year.

If you take these steps to keep track of your passwords, it won’t stop hackers, but it will make it much simpler to access your accounts when necessary, should you be too ill to remember, or after you die.

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