How Secure Are Your Security Questions???

How Secure Are Your Security Questions???

Have you ever forgotten a password? How many do you have? You have probably heard that you should avoid easily-guessed things like “password” or “123456” for your passwords, and that you should use a different password for every website, social media, gaming, school, or other online account you have. That is a lot of passwords to remember! Inevitably, sometimes people will forget passwords and need a way to authenticate, or verify, their identity in order to get back into their accounts. Some websites let you do this by answering a series of security questions, questions that ask about personal information that supposedly only you should know. If you can correctly answer all of the questions, then the website assumes it is really you and not someone impersonating you, and will restore access to your account.

However, many questions might be simple for someone else to answer. What is your mother’s name? What was your first pet’s name? What is your favorite band? Your close friends and family might be able to answer those questions easily. Even someone who does not know you at all might be able to easily guess or find the answers to the questions. They could try a common answer like “pizza” or “ice cream” for “What is your favorite food?,” check out your profile on social media sites like Facebook to find out what city you were born in, and use Google to look up public government records or a family tree website to find your parents’ names. This would allow them to go to a website , click the “I forgot my password” link, and then answer the security questions to gain control of your account. The results of getting hacked can range from embarrassing to causing financial loss.

So, it turns out that picking good security questions—and answers—is just as important as picking a good password. A strong password does not do you much good if someone can easily figure out all the answers to your security questions, but many people might not give these much thought. They might just pick a few that they know will be easier to remember, or they might not be aware of how much information is available about them online.

Article By – Harshita C. Jadhav

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