Random-Lee: Pass codes to life

Today I’m responding, in a way, to a previous article on traveling. It was actually a response to my article on traveling that got me thinking. A response that came to me personally, rather than Chadds Ford Live, because, in the words of the reader, “I wanted to respond to you on-line but I couldn’t get in because I couldn’t remember my pass code.”

Boy did that ring a bell.

Now I won’t say that I am the most techno-savvy person around, but I get by, and I do spend an awful lot of time on-line. Which means I have a lot of pass codes. Actually, I looked it up and at the moment I have 123 accounts that need a user ID and pass code. I wouldn’t mind that at all if the sites would just let you use the same ID and pass code, thus having only one to remember instead of 123…but you know how that goes.

“That ID is taken, please try another.”

“Sorry, your ID must have a combination of capital letters, lower case letters, numbers and symbols.”

“For your own security your bank requires you change your pass code every six weeks.”

And so on.

For a long time I jotted down the codes and numbers in my phone log, or on some scrap of paper on my desk, or on the account statement. No big deal. I figured I would remember the codes or where I wrote them down.  Or could try enough likely combinations to eventually get through. Or, hey, did I really need to use those sites anyway?

And then one day I realized the future was here and it was only going to get worse. So I sat down and created a word file list of every account, every ID and pass code that I could remember. And then I saved it on my computer desktop under “List.” Of course, I add to it every time I visit a new site or log into a blog that requires a sign-in, and my list is now up to the aforementioned 123 with no signs of slowing down.

But I’m not kidding myself that a list file sitting prominently on my desktop is a good long-term solution. I know it’s not secure. I know it’s easily available to anyone, and that it offers access to my bank accounts, credit cards and just about everything else in my life. And, of course, it’s not accessible when I’m not in front of my computer, unless I e-mail it to my cell phone or print and carry it with me.

So where do we go from here? I have heard through the grapevine that there are programs that deal with this modern day memory mess…but I don’t know what they’re called or where to begin to find them, or even if I want to. I know I can’t be alone in this dilemma, so my question for this week is, what do you do about this pass code mess? Do you have a program or app that keeps them for you? Is it secure? If you reply on line, maybe it will help other readers too.

* Lee Miller welcomes responses. Please email them to leemiller229@gmail.com

About Lee Miller

Lee Miller began her writing career with four books about Pennsylvania/east coast wines and the creation of Wine East magazine. She then went on to found the Chaddsford Winery with her husband Eric, where she turned her pen to promotion, advertising, public relations and marketing of their successful business venture for 30 years. Last year Lee co-wrote the new wine book, “The Vintner’s Apprentice” with Eric, and retired from the Chaddsford Winery to pursue other interests. She is currently working on a book about her life in the wine industry and exploring the retirement life. Her goal in writing a column for Chadds Ford Live is to generate dialogue and elicit reader response.

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This Post Has One Comment

  1. ChaddsFordLive

    We haven’t come up with a way to keep the Chaddsfordlive site secure from spam AND eliminate with the pass code plague. Readers will be the first to know when and if we do!

    Our best offering is password re-do at this address

    This reset link also appears right below the login box in the left column of our publication.

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