October 29th 2015
The importance of having a different password for every online account has again been highlighted over the last week with a series of high profile incidents involving personal customer data of three major UK companies.
We are all aware of the TalkTalk hack, in which the details – including passwords – of a still-undetermined number of current and past customers were compromised. This was followed this week by Tuesday's news that Marks and Spencer had suspended its site after a fault had allowed customers to see each other's details when they logged into their own accounts, then the email addresses and passwords of 2,200 British Gas customers being posted online … news which broke yesterday.
The common thread running through all three incidents is that if your password has been compromised – whether maliciously or by accident – and you use the same password for other online accounts, you are gifting easy access to those accounts to potential fraudsters and identity thieves.
Any difficulty or inconvenience involved in devising and protecting different passwords for all of your accounts, could be far outweighed by the financial hardship and trauma (and often, embarrassment) resulting from unauthorised access to your other accounts.
Please take time to read our comprehensive advice on passwords on this website.