The saddest thing I found is that many of the passwords in there were mostly names, dictionary words, or a combo with a few token numbers through in for good measure.
People, this is not smart.
Whenever you register for any site, you’re trusting them to protect your information, but not all site administrators are created equal. Some are diligent and will keep track of current security trends, apply security patches as they come out, use strong passwords to prevent brute force attacks and utilize strict access controls to keep people from gaining access to their systems.
Others just slap a server up, turn on auto-update and hope for the best.
Writers with accounts at Writersspace found out today the value of a good system administrator.
The problem this affects these users far beyond Writerspace. Especially if they used those e-mails and passwords for other accounts. Which a lot of people who aren’t technically, or security, inclined tend to do. Now they’ll have people they don’t know posting very damaging things online from their accounts who they thought would be safe.
We’ve seen how easy it is to destroy a reputation online. And that’s just from someone posting the wrong thing. Imagine if someone posted all sorts of wrong things on your behalf! The only way to keep this from happening is to to protect yourself.
Here are some ways as a writer you can do this:
1. Use a different password for every site you are on: This way if a site is compromised like Writerspace, then you won’t have to worry about other people accessing your other accounts.
2. Use long, random passwords: By having your passwords randomly generated by your computer, it will be almost impossible for people to figure them out. Even better if the generator is using a combination of numbers, letters, and punctuation marks.
3. Get a password manager: If the idea of managing your own passwords seems daunting, use a password manager like 1Password or RoboForm to manage your passwords securely. They make it easy to have separate passwords for each site and can also generate difficult to guess passwords.
If you follow those three steps when something like Writerspace occurs the only thing you need to worry about is the compromised password on that site and not everything else in your life.