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Tuesday, July 29, 2014

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One Step Ahead: Almanac Security Tips - 2014

In each issue, Penn's Journal of Record, The Almanac publishes helpful tips and hints for dealing with information security and privacy matters. This page is a collection of all those published thus far.
New! You can now receive new One-Step-Ahead Security and Privacy Tips automatically!
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Table of Contents (view all)

Heartbleed OpenSSL Vulnerability
Security and Privacy Tips for World Travelers
Filing Taxes Online This Year? Take Steps to Protect Your Information!
If your computer runs Windows XP, you must update it now!
Why Should You Report Security Incidents? And How Do You Report One?
Photo and Video Privacy Issues
The Password is Dead, Long Live the Password!
Data Privacy Month: NSA Surveillance Panel at the National Constitution Center
Protecting Your Finances During This Year’s Holiday Shopping Season
Beware of Phishing E-mails in the Wake of Typhoon Haiyan
No E-mail from Penn Will Ask For Your Username/Password or SSN
The Children's Online Privacy Protection Act: Does It Apply to Your Website?
October: National Cyber Security Awareness Month; Free Secure Disposal of Paper and Electronics
What Basic Rules Protect Student Information at Penn? (September 2013)
Protecting Privacy and Security on Penn + Box

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Tagged with passwords

Tuesday, November 13, 2007 - Almanac Vol. 54, No. 12

Passwords, Passwords Everywhere

Though much progress has been made in recent years in providing more secure methods of gaining access to computing resources, the primary authentication method remains the combination of a username and password. Of course, as we continue to open new accounts on websites like, do our banking online, and perform other useful but confidential work, the number of account names and passwords multiplies as well, and it’s difficult for the average human being to remember all of them.

“Password vault” programs are one solution to this problem. These programs are essentially a database for all your usernames, passwords, and other similarly sensitive information that is encrypted and protected by a single, strong “master” password of your choosing. Simply open the database with the master password to decrypt and look up the account info you need –- much safer than post-it notes on your monitor! If you are using Mac OS X, you already have one called Keychain. A Google search on “password vault” will yield a wide assortment of Windows-based vault programs, such as PowerKeeper (by Symark) and PasswordVault (by Lava Software), though you should compare features and check consumer ratings before buying.

A final caution: Don’t use the “Remember My Password” checkboxes often found on websites and in applications–they are risky for many reasons. If “password proliferation” is giving you a headache, a vault program is a much safer alternative.


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