[Homeroast] Email security ideas

Jim Carter jcarter at ambersystems.com
Tue Mar 23 16:54:39 CDT 2010

Here's something else to consider that might be a good balance between  
effective and easy-to-use.

Consider developing your own personal formula for a password. You could  
fashion a password to use for websites as follows: a string of  
alphanumerics + some portion of the domain name + another string of  
alphanumerics. e.g. "1ststringsw2ndstrinG" for sweetmarias.com. Create a  
different formula for other types of passwords.

This is better than using the same password, or a handful of them, for  
everything. Get creative with your formula. Change case. Insert numbers.  
Now, instead of somebody guessing your dog's name, or anniversary date,  
they would have to guess your formula. Of course, the risk is that you are  
establishing some sort of pattern. But, make it weird enough and it will  
be effective for most things.

Back to my "juice being worth the squeeze" comment. Adjust the complexity  
of your password scheme to the importance of the data you're protecting.  
No need to shoot a fly with a cannon.

- Jim

On Tue, 23 Mar 2010 18:39:55 -0300, Steven Van Dyke <coffee at svandyke.com>  

> It's also pretty easy to come up with a very secure password that's easy  
> to remember.
> For example, if you wanted a very secure password for the Sweet Maria's  
> Coffee Mailing list you could use:
> At 03:02 PM 3/23/2010, you wrote:
>> Jim,
>> Very nice to hear from a pro who's job it is to manage security on  
>> systems.
>> As to how much work am I willing to spend on thwarting efforts? I have  
>> been
>> the victim of ID theft more than once. As you probably know there are  
>> free
>> and very inexpensive password tools out there to generate and auto fill  
>> for
>> you so not really much effort for personal system security.
>> I am curious I just generated this password  
>> "H&vhAtL27^5E$x at 5CL9%XUt#cYC!"
>> How long would it take your best team with the best tools out there to  
>> crack
>> this 168 bit password?
>> Joe
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James B. Carter
Amber Systems, Incorporated

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